- Category: Reviews
Sex Magic Beyond Vanilla
by Taylor Ellwood & Lupa
Immanion Press, 2007
Taylor Ellwood and Lupa have attracted attention for their smart, sophisticated writing in books like Lupa’s Field Guide to Otherkin and Ellwood’s Pop Culture Magick. Here they combine forces for Kink Magic: Sex Magic Beyond Vanilla, a frank, mature, cutting-edge discussion of sexuality, magic, and their various intersections which should prove useful and entertaining whatever your pleasure or perversion.
When it comes to gender, kinky doesn’t necessarily equal cluefull. Lupa and Ellwood offer some much-needed information on gender, gender identity, and gender roles. That homophobic misogynist at your local fetish club should be chained up in a closet with a reading light and a copy of chapters four and five; the end result might be enlightening (or at least entertaining) for all. The authors also provide lots of advice on communication and establishing boundaries: even those who have no interest in bondage arts could benefit from learning how to say “no” effectively and how to discuss one’s needs, wants, and emotional triggers.
Some Witches try to live down those salacious rumors about Sabbath orgies; others wonder where they are held, and how they can acquire an invitation to attend. Those who wish to add others into their sexual rituals will find plenty of useful material here. So will those who are voluntarily or involuntarily single: Kink Magic discusses masturbatory work with nary a Beavis & Butthead snicker. While Ellwood and Lupa both presume their readers have some basic familiarity with BDSM and sex magic, they include a helpful bibliography and list of resources for those who lack that experience or knowledge.
Like any other worthwhile spiritual endeavor, kink magic can be hazardous to one’s physical and emotional health. Smart magicians will minimize these risks: following the advice given in Chapter Seven, the bluntly titled “Reducing the Chance of ‘Oh, F*ck’’s”, will go a long way toward that goal. Lupa and Taylor make an important distinction between hurting (causing pain in a consensual situation) and harming (deliberate, malicious infliction of damage). Conscientious BDSMers may whip, cut, shock, and beat whom they will — but they make sure that their actions harm none. Kink Magic is an invaluable addition to the magical and sexual canons: there is ample material here for the leather-clad domme and the milquetoast missionary alike. Highly recommended.
RATING: 5 Broomsticks
» Originally appeared in newWitch #17
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