Archive for the ‘**Reviews – Tarot Decks’ Category

The Sharman Caselli Tarot Deck

Part of me thinks I should recuse myself from reviewing this deck considering that Juliet Sharman-Burke is one of my favorite Tarot writers and was also one of the first I ever read decades ago when I first began exploring the Tarot.  In my mind, she can do no wrong.

I was eager to review this deck, however and very excited to get it in my hot little hands.  I am less familiar with Giovanni Caselli’s work unless you consider the other Giovanni Caselli – small factoid here – who invented the first fax machine around 1856.  

The deck is reminiscent of the many decks put out by Lo Scarabeo (which this is not) in that the majority of the figures in the cards are fairly expressionless and the color themes are mostly in pastels.   

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Mystic Dreamer Tarot – by Heidi Darros & Barbara Moore

Penned by Llewellyn’s new “Go To” girl for Tarot writing, Barbara Moore, this deck takes the traditional themes of Tarot decks (based on the Pamela Coleman Smith designs from the Rider-Waite deck) and brings them to life using actual photographs of real people modeling the scenes inherent to the cards.  It truly is like stepping into a dream filled with various imagery and symbolism.  Each card warrants a careful study to quietly take in all that the card says and represents. 

Although this deck, especially given the easy to follow instructions provided by Moore in the 200+ page accompanying manual, would be completely suitable for a novice reader, it is equally appropriate for the seasoned professional Tarotologists due solely to its evocative and complex imagery.  Unlike many in this time of mass marketed Tarot decks, The Dreamer’s Tarot appears to be the result of an artist who took their time to carefully consider what the pictures would reflect. 

I love the format of the book on a purely aesthetic level.  It’s very pretty and has the look of a personal journal.  Ms Moore gently nudges the reader with special sections at the end of each interpretation titled, “Use Your Intuition,” that encourage interpretation beyond the written word and classic meaning, instead pulling from the reader’s own experiences and impressions.  This is a practice I wholly endorse for those who wish to study the Tarot.

While certainly not a flippant deck that one would use to toss out a simple reading, it is entirely suitable for readers of all skill levels provided they are able to relax into the complexities of the deck and allow their own subconscious to come forward and become an active participant in the reading.

Enchanted Oracle Review – by Jessica Galbreth & Barbara Moore

As a long time fan of the artwork of Jessica Galbreth, I was tremendously excited to hear of an oracle deck featuring the work of this wonderful artist.  I was more intrigued to know that the text of the accompanying manual was written by Barbara Moore who penned the book for The Mystic Dreamer Tarot, also distributed by Llewellyn. 

True to my hopes, these ladies teamed up to make a lovely divinitory kit.  The 36 card deck does not attempt to play off as a Tarot deck in disguise, but does an apt and appreciative job of standing alone as a card-based oracle.  The art work is definitely some of Galbreth’s finest and each card features a title that is evocative and inspirational, leading the reader to draw upon their own psychic and stream of consciousness impressions.  Alone, the cards would still be a very effective tool for gaining insight into the self and situations. 

Barbara Moore has outdone herself with the text, however and like the deck, it is highly enjoyable as a stand alone product.  The interpretations and explorations of each card are just long enough to be engaging and interesting without belaboring the discussion as so many books are wont to do.  It’s a challenge to find the comfortable space between verbose and minimalist, but Moore has done so perfectly. 

Some of the accompanying interpretations contain exercises and spellwork after the explanation, which is a lovely touch to flesh out the 217 page volume.  In both the text and the card illustrations, the underlying theme is Pagan/Wiccan, which will speak to a broad range of consumers.  This would be the perfect gift for a burgeoning seer or a very personal addition to a Witch’s library, experienced or novice.  It even comes with a precious little fairy pendant.