Best Astrology Bookstore in the United States:
Please note: I have no connection with astroamerica.com other than that this is where I get my astrology books. The service is excellent, and the owner has gone to much trouble not just to sell you books in an extremely pleasing manner, but to educate you through his comments so that you can be sure of knowing what it is you are ordering. This is, without a doubt, one of the very best book sites on the internet. (I have an extensive library on many subjects and 2 and 2/3 degrees in Literature, so I do know something about books and about buying them.)
This is not an exhaustive list of the astrology books I have read, or possess. It is rather
a list distilled from my study and my use of the books in my own astrology library, which I
started building in 1970.
For those with time, but not enough money for a course (see below), read on:
Books I highly recommend for teaching yourself:
Keep in mind that I value books that cover the subject thoroughly, do not aim to entertain where I have come to learn. Are not cute, or make attempts to be cute. I can tell the difference between bad prose and good prose, and it matters greatly to me. I always prefer a strong index and bibliography.
Here follows my exceedingly personal list of books necessary for erecting charts
and interpreting them on your own.
First -- a warning page about a real problem in astrological study.
Second -- know that I am a firm believer in learning how to calculate a chart
yourself. So learn to do it, and ignore the fact that a computer can do it
in the blink of an eye. Your study will benefit greatly.
Required: an Ephemeris
These fascinating books of tables tell you exactly where in the sky every planet is located on any given day -- at midnight or noon. They also track the moon. These books are not specific to astrology -- they are used by astronomers and any student of navigation. I would make my first one inclusive of the years in which most of my friends were born. You can branch out later. I would also suggest you accept the recommendation of Dave at astroamerica.com. I have many ephemeri but my preference is for the first one I ever got, and might not be a happy choice for you. I also look forward to acquiring the yearly Raphael's Ephemeris. It is one of the small delights in publishing--a perfect little book with reams of information, well printed, a pleasure to use. (As a corollary to this, Dave also sells How to read Raphael's Ephemeris -- bottom of the page, under the listing at http://www.astroamerica.com/calendar.html)
The American Atlas
The International Atlas
These are both books of time chages, i.e., when war time, or daylight savings time began each year for a particular area. You simply can't hope to erect an accurate chart without knowing this information. And, accuracy is everything in astrological calculations.
Placidus Table of Houses - Rosicrucian Fellowship
You use this book to calculate the cusp of the Houses. (If you are just beginning, don't be put off by these strange terms. At this point, just know that this book is necessary for finding astrological information that is specific to the person's place and time of birth.) (See Warning.) http://www.astroamerica.com/const2.html
Strongly recommended books of introduction:
<Astrology - R. Davison - This should be your first book. Long out of print, it is once again available, BUT it is WAY WAY down on the page!
The Modern Text Book of Astrology - Margaret Hone. Long out of print, has
been revived by AstroAmerica. (Scroll down a bit on that page to get to the book!) Clear, careful,
sound application with no airy-fairy approaches or digressions. Teaches
the Equal House System. (This is my preference. See My House-warning note.)
(Story of my acquisition of this book.)
Acceptable substitutions for these and easier to find, would be
- Astrology: An Introductory Guide to the Influence of the Stars on your Life
Janis Huntley, 2000.
This is a rough equivalent to the Davison book in that it teaches you chart calculation as well as basic interpretation.
- Natal Charting - John Filbey, 1981.
This is a wonderful book for the mathematically intrepid. A season with this book will make you conversant with all phases of chart calculation -- it will make you comfortable with the basis for astrological calculation, your ticket to the black hole which computer calculation prevents you from entering. It does not go into any interpretive factors at all.
- Astrology, Psychology, and the Four Elements - Stephen Arroyo, 1975.
This book might be a good way into the charts you've learned to create using the previous book. Many people often feel overwhelmed when they think on the prospect of learning to interpret the moon and all the planets, plus the moon's nodes and the Ascendant and Mid-heaven against their appearance in any of twelve houses, any of four Elements, three quadruplicities, and in relation to each other (The variations *are* daunting.) However, this book concentrates on how the four elements--Fire, Earth, Air, and Water-- are activated in the chart. A very basic, but exceedingly valuable approach. (No index -- my only complaint.)
- Chart Interpretation Handbook - Stephen Arroyo, 1989.
This is another possible companion with the Natal Charting book. This one provides short, excellent interpretations of all the major factors in a natal chart. Again, there is no chapter on calculation. (Again no index, but for this type of book, only a good table of contents is necessary, and that exists.)
Digestion of these last three books will put you well on the road to the serious study of astrology.
I recommend highly, all these books by Stephen Arroyo:
Astrology, Psychology and the Four Elements
Relationships and Life Cycles
Practicing the Cosmic Science
Astrology, Karma, and Transformation
MISCELLANEOUS ASTROLOGY REFERENCES
- Astrological Societies
The Astrological Association of Great Britain
NOTE: Excellent publications, and web site.
- The American Federation of Astrologers
(NOTE: Slow, unappealing web site design.)
History of Astrology - very brief web introduction:
- In depth history:
A History of Horoscopic Astrology:
From the Babylonian Period to the Modern Age -- James Herschel Holden
Through, copious footnotes, excellent index. A fine attempt at taming the beast.
(NOTE: This is good. I wouldn't bother with Dell Horoscope.)
- An academic anomaly:
History of Astrology and Science - at least it's on the charts!
Course at Brown
- Distance Learning:
If you are serious and want the most thorough guided education available in astrology look into the diploma course offered by the Faculty of Astrological Studies:
CAVEAT EMPTOR: The Faculty courses require a great deal of time and work. They are not for the faint-of-heart or for the "just curious." If you are not both determined and serious, you will
be wasting your money (a great deal of it). If you are both of these, you will reap the benefits that this marvelous institution has to offer.
If you have less money and time, take a look at
The SuperStar Course in Natal Astrology. Ignore the silly name; take the course.