Rune Casting for Beginners: 5 Books on Runes to Get You Started

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Rune casting is a form of divination that focuses on exploring the subconscious and getting advice, not so much on “seeing” the future. Sure, you can use the runes to guide your decisions, but the future is perceived as something that is influenced by our past and present actions and so it can be changed by them constantly.

If you are ready to begin exploring unknown aspects of yourself, then reading runes is a great way to start. Rune casting layouts can be as easy or as complicated as you feel comfortable with: from a simple yes or no question to three, four, five or even nine rune spreads for the most seasoned learners.

First, grab a rune set that speaks to you or make it yourself. If you don’t want to break the bank or don’t have all the tools on hand, check out this basic set perfect for beginners or get your hands on this DIY kit. Once you have your set, it’s time to start reading and practising!

My Top 5: Best Books on Runes and Rune Casting

Book of Runes Recommendations
My recommendations to get you started on rune reading

You might have been exploring the internet and while it’s a great place to find information about how to do a rune reading… it can also be very overwhelming! I’m a practical person, so I feel like having a good book on hand is still be more convenient than getting lost in a sea of distractions.

These are my recommendations to get you started with nordic rune readings, in no particular order:

  1. A practical guide to the runes by Lisa Peschel
  2. Nordic Runes: Understanding, casting and interpreting the ancient Viking oracle by Paul Rhys Mountfort
  3. Rudiments of Runelore by Stephen Pollington
  4. Taking up the Runes by Diana Paxson
  5. Runes for Beginners by Lisa Chamberlain

You don’t need to buy all of these books to start rune casting, but of course, the best way to learn in the long term is to read from as many sources as possible!

BONUS: For those who want to dig deeper on Rune Magic…

Elder Futhark Rune Set
Learn even more about the elder futhark alphabet

If you want to learn even more about the elder futhark runes’ history and their magical uses, get your hands on the following books:

  1. The Beginner’s Guide to Runes by Josh Simonds
  2. The Book of Runes by Ralph H. Blum (this edition includes a rune set with the book!)
  3. Modern Runes by Vervain Heldsdottir

Lastly, don’t get too overwhelmed by the number of books available, just pick one or two to start and most importantly: practice, practice and practice!

Are you ready to start your rune casting journey? Then you may want to make your own rune set! Click here to learn how


  1. This has been super helpful! I appreciate that you’ve left sources to help out! Thank you and many blessings <3

  2. This was extremely helpful. Thank you for the resources that you had posted. This will help me on my journey to relearning my runes.

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I’m glad you found the resources useful 🙂

  3. Thank you so much for sharing your recommendations for books on Rune stones. I been searching and it became overwhelming. I just recently became interested in Runes and Bind Runes. You’re website has also been very helpful as well.

  4. I consider myself a fairly seasoned rune caster (but still…always!…learning!) and this is a pretty comprehensive list!

    I love your advice on not becoming overwhelmed…that happened to me often early-on (especially with really lengthy and detailed descriptions). You’ll see slight variations on the interpretations, just work on learning the overall “theme” of each rune (what all the various interpretations have in common)—eg wealth for Fehu, joy for Wyn, ancestors/home for Odal, then when casting focus on that theme and let the runes themselves tell you the details!

    Many years ago I came across a website by Oswald the Runemaker and he had the BEST descriptions of the runes. He presented them as steps on a journey, and moving through the aetts like elevating levels of consciousness…sort of equating them to the journey of our mundane and spiritual lives. That was the most helpful to me as it showed not only the individual runes, but how they were all part of a greater whole and finally made them relatable in an almost tangible way. I looked for that site recently and it seems it’s not available any longer, but if anyone finds it, it’s a MUST read.

  5. This is a very helpful list, some of which I have and others that are totally new to me. Yes but of course I ordered two, ok three – LOL You are so correct. Practice, practice, and I will add develop, and explore. Many thanks for posting.

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