fan12.jpg (13665 bytes)The Fantastical Tarot                        Review by Michele Jackson

If you would like to purchase this deck, click here.

The cover card from this deck describes it as having "...otherworldly imagery." That is as good a description as any I am likely to come up with, so I'll use it. The art has a "grotesque" style. One might also call it "gothic" in style. The people have thin faces, pointy and with sharp angles. Their eyes are heavily lidded, and they live in a dark world of multi-hued skies. The cards measure 2 3/4" X 4 3/4". There is a large central scene on a gold border with a thin black decorative border. The card name or number is in the bottom border. The suits are Swords, Wands, Cups and Pentacles. The Major Arcana have the traditional names.   Strength is VIII and Justice is XI. The Court consists of King, Queen, Knight and Page. The Bible says that there is nothing new under the sun. This seems to be true in the Tarot world as well. This is the second deck I have reviewed in as many weeks that has several cards that seem to be based on cards from other decks. The High Priestess' pose reminds me of the New Palladini High Priestess and Strength reminds me of the Warrior of Ancestors from the Dreampower Tarot. Temperance looks like a science-fiction Mucha drawing and the Lovers is the darkest version of this card I have ever seen. Many of the Minors are based on the Waite deck, though the images tend to be simpler. The pentacles look like Compact Discs (CDs). The backs show a dragon and are reversible. The art is good, if you like the style. I like the artist's use of color. Although the deck has a dark look, it is still rather colorful.

The little booklet that comes with this deck is about par for the course. There are a couple of paragraphs on how to care for the cards and read, followed by meanings for the Major Arcana. The meanings have a paragraph that discusses the card in general. Short upright and reversed meanings are also provided. The Minor Arcana and Court cards do not have the descriptive paragraph, just brief upright and reversed meanings. The meanings are similar to those for the Waite deck and those familiar with the Waite deck should have little trouble making the transition to this deck. Spreads include the Celtic Cross and a five card spread called "The Venus Spread." It is described as being useful for emotional issues. Drawing a daily card is also mentioned.

I recommend this deck for collectors, and for a those looking for a deck with a dark feel. It would probably be a hit at a Halloween party, though it is not "cute" like the Halloween Tarot deck.

If you would like to purchase this deck, click here.

Fantastical Tarot
ISBN: 1-57281-202-8
Publisher: US Games Systems, 179 Ludlow St., Stamford, CT 06902, (800)544-2637, Fax (203)353-8431

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Images copyright 1999 US Games Systems Inc.

This page is Copyright 1999 by Michele Jackson