Book Review of Shadows: Naked Witch by Fiona Horne
Fiona Horne’s extraordinary journey through a metaphysical-laced material world has all the breathtaking twists, turns, perils, redemption and enlightenment of a fantasy novel merged with Siddhartha and Entertainment Weekly.
It’s the late 70s and a 10-year-old girl builds an altar in the bushland of suburban Sydney. Stones, leaves and flowers are offerings for her animal friends and the mystical creatures of her imagination. Hidden from the real world the girl feels accepted, and safe. Alone in the bush she is a little pagan.
Fast forward to the 90s and Fiona Horne is now the face of modern Witchcraft, best-selling author, radio and TV personality, and founding member of chart-topping Aria nominated electro-rock group Def FX. She has Hollywood and the world at her fingertips. But simmering beneath the sparkling surface the demons lie in wait . . .
At once heartbreaking and inspirational, you will wonder how one person could pack all this into one life. Maybe she really is a Witch . . . – Goodreads.com
Wow. Honestly, this book is a wild ride. Inspiring, sad, shocking, beautiful, funny, and so so honest. Fiona has seemingly lived multiple lives in a short span of time, and it’s all due to a hell of a survival instinct and the drive and ability to burn it all down and build it back up. It’s no wonder she dances with fire, Fiona is a phoenix who’s risen from the ashes more times than seems possible. I gobbled up this book in 2 days and had a hard time dragging myself away.
The book is written in a comfortable tone – like you’re listening to her tell you her life story over a cup of tea. I often found myself comparing it to my favourite memoir of all time, I’m With the Band by Pamela Des Barres, which I also couldn’t put down and left me feeling like I had gained a soul sister. By the end of the book, I felt a little tired but also felt so inspired. As someone who’s going through their own issues with my mental state and the direction of my life, watching Fiona grapple with the same things and come out on top (LITERALLY. SHE’S A PILOT NOW!) left me feeling excited.
The design of the book reflects everything I learned about Fiona by reading it. The cover is gorgeous and provocative, the photos of her smiling with rock stars like Gene Simmons and Gwen Stefani, or next to the plane she flies on aid missions through the carribbean exude love and pride, and her punny titles made me laugh out loud. I absolutely loved having those photos to expand on all of her stories and experiences. In one story she talks about feeling cleansed by the rain in the french quarter in New Orleans and the accompanying photo shows both the pain she was holding back and the beautiful cleansing from the rain. This was probably my favourite part of the book.
Scratch that, my favourite part was when SHE HAD A FRIENDSHIP AND FLING WITH TOM JONES. TOM JONES. IT’S NOT UNUSUAL, SEX BOMB, CARLTON DANCE TOM JONES. I screamed I was so excited. I didn’t see it coming at all! Fiona’s experiences in love and relationships show that true love has no gender or sex or real orientation. She fell in love with people, and they loved her back to the beautiful soul she is.
Throughout the book, Fiona details her struggles with a difficult upbringing, her magical experiences in the Australian bush, her time as the kickass lead singer of Def FX, her immersion in the Hollywood glam of 90s witchcraft and show business, and all of her issues with self-esteem and self-hatred. It’s painful to read about how much she hated herself, how ugly she thought she was, and how much she had to struggle because it’s obvious right away that she’s a loving and beautiful person with a good heart. (Plus she’s still a hot witch!)
As a previous 90s witch I read some her books growing up (they were at the local library!) and as it turned out I definitely watched her music videos in the middle of the night when MTV got a little harder. This book is a great bit of nostalgia for the era of the glam 90s witch, but it doesn’t stop there and neither did Fiona.
That’s really my favourite thing about naked Witch, Fiona’s unrelenting drive to survive and recreate herself. More than once she could have given up and given up on who she is, but she never did. When you get right down to it, Fiona is Fiona. She is the Naked Witch without the trappings of fame, the synthetic dreads and vinyl pentacles, and all of the baggage that comes with witchcraft and stardom – and it’s beautiful.
You can find Fiona all over social media and learn more about her books, her life, Def FX, and even the aid missions she flies throughout the carribbean! Read the book, and let her now how much you loved it!
Visit her website – fionahorne.com
Fiona Horne on Facebook
captainfifi on Instagram
@fionahorne on twitter
Def FX on Facebook
#TheNakedWitch #FionaHorne #LongLiveTheWitch
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The Fat Feminist Witch – 18 February, 2018