Guiley is a respected, prolific author of reference books for the New Age. Her output includes the "Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft" (1989), "Harper's Encyclopedia of Mystical and Paranormal Experience" (1991), and the "Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits" ["RBB" O 15 92]
She writes in the introduction that "my purpose in writing this book is to help others discover the treasure in their own dreams." She goes on to say that "the definitions of symbols provided in this book are drawn from myth, alchemy and modern dreamwork." The result is a do-it-yourself dream manual anchored in symbols primarily from the Western tradition
Part 1 contains essays on the science of dreams, cross-cultural beliefs, nightmares, dreams and the paranormal, dreams and alchemy, and working with dreams. Part 2 lists dream symbols and their interpretations. For example, dreaming of oats symbolizes "sexual energy or activity." The approximately 1,000 entries are arranged alphabetically and vary in length from a phrase to several paragraphs. Adequate cross-references are provided. A bibliography of recommended reading contains 125 titles, the majority published in the 1980s
There are many books on the interpretation of dreams, but most of them are not arranged for quick lookups. With current interest in New Age topics and the continuing interest in dreams, this title will be a good addition to reference and circulating collections in public libraries.