Witches of America (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

While working on a documentary about fringe religions, Alex Mar found herself drawn to paganism and witchcraft, and now she's written a book! Witches of America is a memoir-slash-ethnography; it explores modern-day paganism through Mar's firsthand experience—participating in rituals, attending conventions, and even training in a specific pagan tradition. I found Mar's experience and research absolutely fascinating; her exploration of faith and religion will engage and inform all readers.

— From Emma


Witches of America is a memoir of Alex Mar's immersive five-year trip into the occult, as both a journalist and someone searching for her own faith. She explores modern Paganism--from its roots in 1950s England to its present-day American mecca in the San Francisco Bay Area; from a gathering of more than a thousand witches in the Illinois woods to the New Orleans branch of one of the world's most influential magical societies--and decides to train in a coven herself. With keen intelligence and wit, Mar illuminates the world of witchcraft while grappling in fresh and unexpected ways with the question underlying every faith: Why do we choose to believe in anything at all? Whether evangelical Christian, Pagan priestess, or atheist, each of us craves a system of meaning to give structure to our lives. Sometimes we just find it in unexpected places.

About the Author

Alex Mar is a writer based in New York City, her hometown. Her work has recently appeared in The Believer, the Oxford American, Elle, The New York Times Book Review, and The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2015. Mar is also the director of the documentary feature film American Mystic. Witches of America is her first book.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780374536435
ISBN-10: 0374536430
Publisher: Sarah Crichton Books
Publication Date: October 11th, 2016
Pages: 288
Language: English