Beginners: A Simple Way to Read Your Chart, by Joann Hampar. Llewellyn Publications, 240pp,
This book is a primer for the beginning astrologer.
It is a quick read and very easy to understand.
Ms. Hampar has the ability to pack a lot
of information in a very small space.
She goes through the usual signs, houses, elements, qualities, planets in houses,
aspects, etc., and has a special space for the sign on the ascendant (also known
as the rising sign). She goes through the sequence of the signs and the framework
of the horoscope.
Even though this is a very basic beginning text, it
is not boring even to a seasoned astrologer.
She leads the student through a very complex study in a natural progression
explaining the planets in the houses and signs and the meaning of
aspects formed between planets.
The most interesting part of the book to me was
the explanation of how to look for the patterns
formed by the sequence of the planets around
the chart and the seven basic chart patterns.
She points out the importance
of knowing the meaning of the patterns such
as the “splash” pattern,
where each planet is in a different sign and
house and has multiple aspects. She gives
the key words for a quick read of this pattern i.e. versatility—universality.
The “bundle” pattern whose signature is planets all within
120 degrees of each other—keywords concentration
and focus. She moves through all seven possibilities
and then describes the hemispheres (North, South,
East and West) and what they mean in terms of
how the individual with this hemisphere emphasis experiences life,
processes information, and behaves based on this particular focus
This book is a quick read for the interested layperson
or the very beginning student of astrology. The
more experienced astrologer will be pleased with
the descriptions of the chart patterns which
are not always included in beginning texts.