Over the last thousand years there have been several distinct streams of Western magical practice. Running parallel are the grimoires, which focus on preparation and complex procedures to produce effective communication and interaction with spiritual beings, and the Books of Secrets, full of simple techniques using easily available ingredients. Both of these traditions have influenced many of the more recent magical traditions and practices that have developed in recent centuries. However, until recently the importance of the early Book of Secrets tradition has been largely ignored. Here magician David Rankine explains the rich, magical history behind these books.