I have started to read this book many times and this requirement gave me the push I needed to actually finish it. Drawing Down the Moon is one of those books that a lot of people say they have read, but I don’t know that many actually made it all the way through. Even though it has been several years since the last update, I still find the book relevant. It speaks to the struggle of Pagans in the present, after the Witchcraft laws have been repealed, but Pagans must still live with prejudice. Adler draws on a myriad of sources from a wide range of traditions in this book but it has a bit of a “Wiccan” bent. This book is an easy read, but is rather long and if you have an issue with controversial views, you probably won’t enjoy it.
I think Drawing Down the Moon now serves as a contemporary history book. I found it interesting to compare and contrast the way Paganism is portrayed in the book to the way I see it existing around me. There seems to be more of an intermingling of traditions in the area in which I live. There are more solitaries than covens, though the solitaries may meet on high days, or for a workshop or esbat, they still do the majority of their workings on their own. There also seems to less emphasis on lineage and whether or not you are initiated into a certain tradition and more on overall ability and knowledge. There seems to be less emphasis on keeping knowledge secret. The Pagans I regularly encounter are more interested in sharing and growing knowledge collectively than hording that knowledge for a select few.
This is a book that I would encourage all pagans to read, especially newcomers. It gives you a chance to see the opinions and thought of those who may now be considered “Elders” and realize that they too were, and are, still trying to figure things out.