Although this survey covers much the same ground as Gregor's Amulets, Talismans, and Fetishes (1975) with more specifics, the information is poorly organized and unevenly detailed. Where Gregor was content to include a chart of zodiacal and birth stones, here there is a long chapter, listing their physical properties, market values, and supposed powers. But for all these facts, we're often left wondering why and how the stones are supposed to work. The rest of the book breaks down into a kind of overstuffed shopping list of ""queer"" amulets and talismans by regions and peoples, which sacrifices a more complete understanding--psychological aspects, similarities in diverse cultures--for a mere data blitz. While there are sections of some interest, as on New Orleans voodoo and modern-day charms like mood rings, for overall clarity and restraint stick with Gregor.