When the Universe wants you to learn a lesson, it will ask nicely at first, and then it pulls out the cosmic baseball bat to knock the lesson into you. Since Beltaine I’ve been pushed out of my comfort zone regarding all that “mushy, touchy-feely love stuff” and I’m not happy about it. I find myself shaking my fist at Bette Midler, Tina Turner, and those sappy Supremes more often of late.
Love, in all it’s forms, is demanding my attention lately, and like a naughty puppy, I keep pretending if I don’t look at Love then it can’t see me. So you can imagine the groan of epic proportions when I found Weiser Books had sent me a tarot deck to review: The Lovers’ Tarot Deck.
I get books to review every so often and unfortunately many of them go into my “stack of good intentions” awaiting some free time to open up where I can kick back and give them some attention. I’d never gotten a tarot deck before though, and given the fact the whole theme of this deck makes me uncomfortable and my misbehaving tummy is making me extra grumpy, I thought “Heck, why not?”
This deck is lovely, although generally I don’t like Photoshopped decks, particularly the surreal ones. I’m more annoyed rather than inspired by a fish head sloppily pasted on a man’s body with a jarring desert in the background. The Lover’s Tarot appears to have been created in a program like Photoshop, yet the the images blend well and there is cohesion, harmony and grace in the imagery. In spots where the digital decoupage is a bit more apparent, the emphasis is rightly placed to give the meaning of the card an edge, like the face of Death or the lightning striking The Tower. The Queen of Swords, The Emperor, The Devil, The Hermit and The High Priestess are visually some of my favorite cards in this deck. The Minor Arcana are very simple and elegant, leaving the Court cards and Major Arcana to emphasize visually their place in the reading.
I like that the upright cards represent a Gift and reversed cards a Challenge. That language and emphasis implies a responsibility and awareness on the part of the querent, rather than a passivity. Here is your gift which you must guard. Here is your challenge, which you must overcome. I have an issue with reversed cards, but really feel comfortable with this interpretation. I also like how the Minor Arcana is arranged by value rather than suit which made looking up cards very quick.
Now for any tarot deck, at least in my view, the proof is in the reading: will this deck prophesy intelligently? I shuffled, I drew, I consulted, I mused and I was quite satisfied. The deck was easy to read, gave proper answers to situations I knew well and surprising yet probable answers to those I did not. It’s advice was useful, images evocative and basically it does what it aims to do: provide a tarot deck and book geared specifically towards relationships.
I am quite literally the last person on earth who would buy a deck like this off the shelf, but I am pretty impressed by this deck. It’s unique, delivers what it promises and despite being about love isn’t just a mushy mess. It’s pretty sound perspectives for all lovers, whether paired or single and a nice useful addition to your tarot collection. After all, love is a common divination question, and this deck can aid in answering those questions quite nicely.
In short, grumpy as I am, after having had a chance to play with this deck, I can honestly say I’d recommend this one to buy. The price is reasonable, the artwork both lovely and interesting, and the the book extremely useful. You can buy The Lovers’ Tarot Deck here.