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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Alchemy

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  97 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
More than magic...

Where else can one combine chemistry and philosophy to turn base metal into gold while discovering a magical elixir to prolong life? Here's a simple and straightforward guide to alchemy that explains its basic principles. Written by one of the world's few practicing alchemists, it's a concise reference guide that provides easy-to-follow information so tha
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Paperback, 336 pages
Published April 1st 2008 by Alpha (first published 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jasmine
Oct 02, 2010 Jasmine rated it did not like it
Do you know know what is wrong with this book?




The idiots who read it.

Alchemy is
Alchemy, derived from the Arabic word al-kimia, is both a philosophy and an ancient practice focused on the attempt to change base metals into gold,
according to wikipedia.

Where else can one combine chemistry and philosophy to turn base metal into gold while discovering a magical elixir to prolong life?
according to this book.




Books like this cause interactions like this:

customer:
Is there a place other than new
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B.  Barron
Jun 23, 2011 B. Barron rated it really liked it
Its a good book, very enlightening on the subject – though perhaps not in the way the author seems to have intended. Still it certainly merits the 4-star rating based on the wealth of information it provides. It does drag at points.

I am a huge, flaming skeptic when it comes to things mystical and magical and miraculous. I want to believe in these things, and in point I really do believe in them – just not the way most do. There is magic in this old, dark world of ours – but its not what the pedd
...more
Taliesin Mcknight
Jan 30, 2015 Taliesin Mcknight rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I have my reservations about this book, I still give it 4 stars because this is a really good general introduction to the subject of alchemy. It explores the general history of the subject, the different types of alchemy, and basic symbolism. This is good for someone who would like just a brief overview of the subject. However, as it goes into many different aspects, it doesn't give much detail in any one aspect of the subject. Also, it would be nice if it gave more instructions on prac ...more
Alex Dunn
Oct 15, 2016 Alex Dunn rated it it was amazing
I don't normally like these Idiot guides but this one was really good, I've read a few other books by this author and he's excellent at explaining very complex subjects and alchemy is a complex as it can get (sorry for the unenlightened it's not as simple as J K made out).

If you want to learn more about alchemy read this first, then go onto the other books.
Ron
Mar 08, 2011 Ron rated it liked it
Arcane. Occult. Occasionally pragmatic. Some parts fascinating, others not so much. Not everyone's cup of tea. I found his discussions about Jung's attraction to alchemy to be illuminating, and I appreciated his clear explanation of the different possible foci (dimensions?) of alchemy, including the psychological.
Bridger Montana
Nov 24, 2013 Bridger Montana rated it it was amazing
If this is a topic you are interested in, this was an amazing read that opened my eyes to the wonder of the world around me, as well as helped me to understand what I thought to be a dead art. I loved this book.
Brad
Apr 03, 2011 Brad marked it as to-read
Yup. It exists. I bought it at a Borders that was closing. It's for research for my young adult novel!
Bryan Corradino
Oct 15, 2012 Bryan Corradino rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Excellent guide, simple but very much detailed at the same time. It helped me a lot when i took the Trinity exam (my topic was about alchemy).
Shinynickel
Oct 05, 2010 Shinynickel marked it as to-read
Holy shit, I have to read this.
K.A. Stewart
Aug 26, 2010 K.A. Stewart rated it liked it
For research!
Sheila Coldiron
Nov 02, 2012 Sheila Coldiron rated it it was amazing
I read this book in preparation for a seminar on the "Emerald Tablet." It is an excellent book and I learned a lot from it. If you have no previous experience or knowledge of Alchemy.
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