As a practicing Faery witch and lifelong lover of magic, Halo Quin is also a devotee of Freya and the Faery Queen, so it’s easy to see where the impetus for Crimson Craft: Sexual magic for the Solo Witch comes from! One of my favorite sections of this book is at the beginning of Chapter 1. Titled “Foreplay”, this small section is a warning to those who might not be ready to tackle the very intimate topics covered. Starting off with a bit of cheek is absolutely delightful, and perfectly suited to Quin.
The book is separated into a variety of chapters that are logically and well thought out in terms of pacing. The first chapter deals with how to use the book, with sections on safety considerations, including mental health support, as well as a note about ethics that talks about consent. While this is a book targeting solo practitioners and assisting with healing wounds associated with the erotic self, the inclusion of consent is completely appropriate.
Separated into parts which then house individual chapters, Quin has deftly taken a number of topics and expanded on them in a detailed way. In “Part II Laying the Foundation”, Quin talks about sensual magic and provides insight into how to prepare for the various practices described. Interestingly, it’s acknowledged that not all things need to be healed all at once and the reader is cautioned to take their time and check in with themselves. Quin explains:
“Our bodies hold the memories of all we have lived through, and some of us have lived through quite painful things. We might need support to heal, or release, some things. If you encounter something like that within yourself, I invite you to consider what kind of support might be the right choice for you and seek it out when you are ready.”1
Quin has spent a great deal of time ensuring that this book is approachable and written in a way that is helpful and not divisive. You will find no earth shattering practices in here, unless you count taking responsibility for your own healing particularly sensational. This is not to mean that the book isn’t worthy of being on the shelf alongside other popular books of this ilk; rather, I would suggest starting with this book before those others. The tone is soft and gentle and might be a better entry into this sort of practice for those who are new to this. It isn’t easy healing sexual wounds no matter how much therapy might have been done, and this book is in line with many parameters around self-care with respect to the numerous calls to perform self check-ins along the way.
Having said that, the section on erotic divinities absolutely got my full attention. In fact, I jumped ahead to it as soon as I saw the table of contents. Who wouldn’t? I mean, I guess some people have patience and read through the whole book in order the way it was meant to be read but that person is not me.
Quin states that “Magic. Sex. War. Love. The deities of passion hold all these things in their grasp. The Goddesses of Passion are known by many names and many faces.”2 Quin continues by naming a few: Inanna, Aphrodite, Lilith, Freyja, Venus, and Babylon, all of whom have their own stories and embody the Goddess persona in very different ways, depending on which stories you subscribe to.
Quin connects love and righteous war saying that they are two sides of the same coin, which is apparent in that goddesses of love are often also warrior women as well. It’s an interesting concept, and one that is found often when reading about goddesses in this context. Quin explains why there is such a deep connection between love and war within the context of love goddesses, stating, “Perhaps because love is a passion, love is a feeling that fills one with fire. Whether that fire is the gentle hearth or the roaring bonfire, it is akin to the fire that can be used to protect the ones we love from darkness.”3
Not only does Quin talk about the goddesses, but the gods of passion are mentioned as well. It’s a bit tricky to navigate this particular space when there is much talk of reclaiming the divine feminine, but Quin magnificently sidesteps the drama and gets right to the point. Quin says:
“Each one of us, regardless of gender, has to learn to temper our passions, and to know when to let them pour out into the world. And so, the gods of love are so often depicted as wild and kind in equal measure…with their passions held in balance in service of their love. And here is the lesson of the gods of passion; where the goddesses can teach us about boundaries of self, the gods can teach us about the boundaries of community and family. Passion is both expression and protection, and is this not love?”4
Recognizing that gender can produce more stress in specific instances, I feel that this book would be more helpful than harmful for those looking to reclaim their sexual sovereignty. There are exercises included throughout the book that assist with healing in the form of journaling, meditation, spellcasting, and others. I would recommend Crimson Craft to absolutely anyone looking to start down the path of healing, regardless of whether the harm being dealt with is sexual or not. This is a valuable addition to any library, and I know it’s going on my shelf.
Sarrah October Young is a writer and practising witch who wished she could do stand-up comedy. When she isn’t writing or witching, she can be found posting about her cats on IG @therealoctober.