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      AMANDA YATES GARCIA discusses her debut memoir INITIATED with PAM GROSSMAN in Los Angeles

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      October 26, 2019

      Saturday   6:00 PM

      1818 N Vermont Avenue
      Los Angeles, California 90027

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      AMANDA YATES GARCIA discusses her debut memoir INITIATED with PAM GROSSMAN

      Initiated: Memoir of a Witch (Grand Central Publishing)


      Smoke Gets in Your Eyes meets Women Who Run With The Wolves in this "gorgeously written, fierce, political, personal, and deeply inspiring" (Michelle Tea) memoir about finding meaning, beauty, and power through a life in witchcraft.

      An initiation signals a beginning: a door opens and you step through. Traditional Wiccan initiates are usually brought into the craft through a ceremony with a High Priestess. But even though Amanda Yates Garcia's mother, a practicing witch herself, initiated her into the earth-centered practice of witchcraft when she was 13 years old, Amanda's real life as a witch only began when she underwent a series of spontaneous initiations of her own.

      Descending into the underworlds of poverty, sex work, and misogyny, Initiated describes Amanda's journey to return to her body, harness her power, and create the magical world she longed for through witchcraft. Hailed by crows, seduced by magicians, and haunted by ancestors broken beneath the wheels of patriarchy, Amanda's quest for self-discovery and empowerment is a deep exploration of a modern witch's trials - healing ancient wounds, chafing against cultural expectations, creating intimacy - all while on a mission to re-enchant the world. Peppered with mythology, tales of the goddesses and magical women throughout history, Initiated stands squarely at the intersection of witchcraft and feminism. With generosity and heart, this book speaks to the question: is it possible to live a life of beauty and integrity in a world that feels like it's dying?

      Declaring oneself a witch and practicing magic has everything to do with claiming authority and power for oneself, of taking back our planet in the name of Love. Initiated is both memoir and manifesto calling the magical people of the world to take up their wands: stand up, be brave, describe the world they want, then create it like a witch.

      Praise for Initiated

      "A journey through wild beauty and deep wounds, Initiated is the book we need right now-it is an embrace, an awakening, a forging by flame and an enchanted rallying cry." --Jade Chang, author of The Wangs vs. the World

      "To read Initiated is to undergo your own. Amanda's wisdom and insight into the heart of the witch is complimented by her ability to weave together a story that is also a spell. Somewhere between a memoir and a grimoire, this book invites the reader to reflect on their own cycles of life and death as well as their own relationship to the witch. All in a way that's uplifting, engaging, feminist as fuck and so unapologetically fierce. No one else could have written this story, and whether you identify as a witch or not, you'll leave obsessed." --Gabriela Herstik, author of Inner Witch: A Modern Guide to the Ancient Craft

      "Early on in her beautifully written memoir, Amanda Yates Garcia says of her sister, 'I decided to love her forever.' That is precisely how I felt about this gorgeous memoir that refuses to be labeled or to fit inside any kind of box. Part history, part mythology, part poetry, part prose; but mostly: magic. Which is to say: this is a book about love. A book which challenges the reader to a deeper understanding of what it means to be human in a complicated and beautiful world. My copy is dog eared and highlighted and I plan to pass it on to all my friends. This book reminds us that we all are powerful with the capacity to change the world, one witch at a time." --Jennifer Pastiloff, author of On Being Human

      "This bold and transporting story of one woman's awakening into her own spiritual power reads as a metaphysical coming of age, bearing gifts for anyone seeking her own alignment in the world." --Amelia Gray, author of Isadora

      "As much as witches are warriors, we are also guardians-of a history, culture, and practice that's been erased and persecuted for millennia. Recently, I've watched with apprehension as witchcraft, in a much-needed renaissance, has also become a lifestyle trend on Instagram, ahistorical and commodified. I've been hoping for a visibility that cannot divorce witchcraft from its insurrectionary origins, its lineage of liberation, its blood memory that connects us to its feminist fire. As Initiated luminously testifies, Amanda Yates Garcia is the kind of warrior and guardian witches need: subversive and scholarly, empowered and devoted, a magician and a firebrand." --Johanna Hedva, author of On Hell

      "You don't need to be a witch to be enchanted by Initiated. Because this book casts a spell on all of us, asking us to summon our own mythologies, powers, and voices. With oppressive regimes and violence against the planet and our people at our every turn, Amanda Yates Garcia's Initiated peers within the abyss, creating magic and meaning despite - and as a reaction toward - the darkness. In these pages, a battle cry. A mythic celebration of inner power. And a meditation on healing and justice - not just for the self, but, as Garcia says, "for all beings." --Lisa Marie Basile, author of Wordcraft Witchery and Light Magic for Dark Times

      Amanda Yates Garcia is a writer, artist, professional witch, and the Oracle of Los Angeles. Her work has been featured in The MillionsThe LA TimesTime Out, LA Weekly, GOOP, GlamourThe London Times, CNN, Salon, as well as a viral appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight. She has led classes and workshops on magic and witchcraft at UCLA, UC Irvine, MOCA Los Angeles, The Hammer Museum, LACMA, The Getty and many other venues. Co-host of the popular Strange Magic podcast, Initiated is her first book.

      Author photo by Sarah Soquel Morhaim

      Pam Grossman is the creator and host of The Witch Wave podcast and the author of Waking the Witch: Reflections on Women, Magic, and Power (Gallery Books) and What Is A Witch (Tin Can Forest Press). Her writing has appeared in such outlets as the New York TimesThe Atlantic,, Sabat Magazine, and her occulture blog, Phantasmaphile. She is co-founder of the Occult Humanities Conference at NYU, and her art exhibitions and magical projects have been featured in such publications as ArtforumArt in America, and the New Yorker. You can find her at and @Phantasmaphile.

      Categories: Literary & Books

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