And you are right: there is a difference between Witchcraft and Wicca. Buckingham is a Witch and Cunningham was a Wiccan. To be absolutely honest with you, I had trouble with Cunningham's books. He was a good writer, but I kept getting the feeling that he was talking down to Witches, because it is folk magick, whereas Wicca is more concerned with ritual. I just felt that he saw Wicca as a higher/better path than Witchcraft. That may be way off base for others, but that is my view of him.
You can practice both Wicca and Witchcraft. There are people who call themselves Wiccan Witches. Some people call themselves Wiccan simply because they don't want to use the word "Witch" because of all the negative connotations with the word. Wicca focuses on ritual, while Witchcraft focuses on magick and healing. There are Wiccans who don't practice any magick at all. It all depends on what you are comfortable with. Back when I was a practitioner I called myself a Witch more than I called myself a Wiccan, because that's what I preferred.
CL of May-December Relationships
Both the Dummies books and the Idiot's Guides are really good. I've looked through them, but they were published long after I'd been a Pagan. However, if I was a new one I'd definitely purchase the books because they present everything in a clear way. There is a lot to Paganism and it's very easy to become overwhelmed.
Ok, on to your questions. 1). Witchcraft definitely casts circles, because it is a religion that is based on magick. Wiccans don't always cast circles, because not all Wiccans practice magick, though a lot of them do use circles in ritual and magick. 2). Both use altars and special tools. However, a lot of times Witchcraft uses simple tools, especially if you're a kitchen Witch or focus mainly on healing or hearth magick. 3). Yes, both use special candles. Most 101 books will have correspondence tables which tell you what colors to use for different purposes. It is not absolutely necessary to use those specific candle colors. You can always just use white ones. 4). Witchcraft focuses on magick, while many Wiccans, but not all, use magick. 5). The particular Deities are a matter of choice. If you belong to a coven, you will, of course, follow the Deities of the coven in group ritual, but you might follow different Deities in private ritual. Both Witchcraft and Wicca have Deities, though not all of them follow the all-encompassing Divine as well as other Deities. Some are monotheistic, in that they follow one Deity, usually one Goddess. Some are pantheistic, in that they see the Divine in everything and see the Universe or the Divine as the most important. Some are duotheistic in that they follow a God and a Goddess. Sometimes They have particular names and other times They are known as the Lord and the Lady or the God and the Goddess. And there are polytheists, like myself, who follow many Gods and Goddesses. 6). Both Witchcraft and Wicca follow the main holidays and the moon phases. However, not all Pagan paths will do so. Some have different holidays and names for them and not all of them follow the moon phases. 7). Both can use a BoS. 8). Witches definitely use herbs. Not all Wiccans will, but the ones who practice magick do. Herbs can be used in spells, to make essential oils, to make incense, for healing, to use on altars, to use as offerings, to use in decorations and crafts, etc.
As for where everyone else is, the longer you're here the more you'll see that this board can be rather hit or miss. Sometimes it is an active board but a lot of times it can also be very quiet, like it's been lately.
Merry Meet Jackie.
Just thought I would pass on a little bit of advice, if thats ok with you.
Out of the books you have listed I have only read Cunninghams, & I tend to agree with sisterhoney's opinion on his beliefs. As I live in