Tarot Face to Face is geared towards tarot readers getting ready to make the jump to reading professionally. This makes it a valuable addition to your library, especially if you are starting out reading professionally, or contemplating it as an option later on.
Reviews & Posts
Whew. Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let me just tell you clearly: THIS BOOK IS A ROUGH RIDE. IT IS NOT A FUN READ MOST OF THE TIME. Know what your limits are before jumping into this book, ESPECIALLY (I cannot stress this enough) if you have experienced domestic violence or intimate partner abuse.
Field Guide to Invasive Species of Minnesota: Poems
I have enjoyed every book I have read from Interstellar Flight Press, and this one was no exception. I will probably end up buying a print copy because the vintage illustrations of the invasive species were lovely, but I feel a screen doesn’t do them justice.
Tarot by the Moon
Wow! This book was a very pleasant surprise for me. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from the title, but Tarot By the Moon surpassed my expectations, and it’s one I am surely adding to my library in print form.
My best description is that it’s a hybrid of Farmer’s Almanac, a tarot technique book, divinatory technique, shadow work, and lunar occult ritual book. The official stance of the book is that it’s targeted towards readers who want to make meaningful change, so it’s an active, rather than a passive read. I find that because of this, it’s well-suited to shadow work, because that’s generally the area where readers want to create tangible change. It’s really much more than a moon phases or basic tarot book.
/ listen, I love you joy is coming
May 2021 TinyLetter “…if you think nothing &no one can / listen I love you joy is coming” To the Woman Crying Uncontrollably in the Next Stall, Kim Addonizio Merry Meet, Gardeners & Guardians, May is upon us, and everything is blooming. On Beltane, I experienced the explosion of pink that are Oregon’s cherry blossoms. […]
It’s Only Forever
I meet Muriel’s ghost in my dreams, in the Labyrinth. We’re both dressed like Sarah. I know that there’s only thirteen hours to get to the center of the Labyrinth, or one of us will disappear. I hold in my hands a golden spool of memory. It is my job to unwind the thread, to outwit the Goblin King, to bring back my friend who was stolen. All this responsibility, held in the palm of my hand.
Tarot Mysteries: Rediscovering the Real Meaning of the Cards
by Jonathan Dee I’m glad I read this tarot book, and it’s one I will keep for my library. However, it’s unlikely that I’d recommend it to anyone except a dedicated tarot scholar, historian, or academic. It’s one of the better books that addresses the history and esoterica of tarot. Unfortunately, however, it does have […]
Tarot Deciphered: Decoding Esoteric Symbolism in Modern Tarot
I’m giving this book 5 stars, even though I didn’t enjoy reading it, here’s how that works: it’s an extremely well-written, knowledgeable resource. I just didn’t enjoy it because I discovered that the esotericism of the tarot isn’t what interests me about tarot. I don’t read with the two main decks created out of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, Thoth and RWS, I like decks based off the RWS system to the deck itself and Thoth has never been my thing. So, unsurprisingly, this book wasn’t really for me.
Tarot: Connect With Yourself, Develop Your Intuition, Live Mindfully
This is a great addition to any tarot bookshelf, and it is especially great for a tarot newbie. I know that I say that about a lot of intro to tarot books, but I wouldn’t say that if it weren’t a truly good intro to tarot book. In fact, this is the kind of book I’d have loved to have access to when I was new to it. However, I am also a firm believer that the cards and their meanings are ever-evolving to adapt to the modern word — so you’re never too advanced to take a refresher.
The Nightmare Before Christmas Tarot
This is a really great, officially licensed tarot deck, excellent to have as a functional deck for creepy tarot readers, or as an art deck for fans of the Nightmare Before Christmas. The art is by Abigail Larson, with the guidebook written by Minerva Siegel.
Potions, Elixirs, & Brews: A Modern Witches’ Grimoire of Drinkable Spells
What a fun, fast read! Baby witches today are quite lucky (and by that, I only mean “witches under age 30” — no ageism here, I know baby witches can be quite knowledgeable and experienced!) TikTok and other social media platforms where this author is an established influencer help baby witches find their people and forge strong bonds to work their craft together — this was not always such an easy task, so in that regard I think baby witches today are quite lucky, because some of those influencers go on to write books like these. I wasn’t aware of the author’s status when I requested book or began reading, so keep in mind my review exists separately from their social media platforms.
The Truth Is We Are Perfect
This collection of poetry is infused with spiritual intention, and it’s easily one of the best poetry books I’ve read during quarantine. I’ve read and re-read it several times, following my first Writing and Ritual workshop with Janaka Stucky and Pam Grossman.
This is a tremendous collection for poets, those concerned with matters of the spirit and soul, and where those two identities converge.
“There is power in the fact that they enjoyed pleasure for pleasure’s sake and never apologized.”
I’m already a fan of Andrea Blythe’s work, and I’ve been meaning to preorder this (which I will now be doing promptly, as the layout and section art is very attractive and I prefer my poetry chapbooks in print.) However, seeing it available as an ARC, I couldn’t wait to get a sneak peek.
The Halloween Oracle
This is what I would call a great “starter oracle”, hence 4 stars as opposed to 5. There are 36 cards in the deck, and like many decks produced by Blue Angel, they’re a bit bigger than average, with a glossy finish. This makes shuffling a bit difficult if you have smaller hands. The approach to Halloween images and themes is on the general side, which makes the deck accessible — hence, my description as a “starter oracle”. The cards contain a keyword phrase on them, so you don’t need the guide to perform a reading, and at a page or less per card, the guide doesn’t offer much depth or added context — which is fine in a starter deck.
Myths & Mermaids:
I’ve had 4 different oracle collaborations featuring the art of Jasmine Becket-Griffith, and without exception, they are all wonderful additions to any collection. This was my first of their collaborative decks, so it holds a special place in my heart, as a Florida girl with a special affection for the Weeki Wachee mermaids.
The Vampire Tarot
Beautiful deck, very glossy card stock. The cards are slightly oversized but still easy to shuffle. The glossy finish of the cards makes the shuffle a little slower, but it’s not disruptive to using it for a draw. The back of the cards have a stylized, sort of classic vampire image
Floriography: An Illustrated Guide to the Victorian Language of Flowers
This is an easy read, a beautiful coffee table book, an a solid reference book on a topic that I’ve never seen a book dedicated to covering. I could easily see this at home in a florist shop, and equally at home on the bookshelf of a Green Witch, a poet who loves to write about flowers, or someone who just really likes flowers.
This is a great addition to any tarot student’s collection. It’s good for tarot readers of any experience level, but will be of particular use to new tarot readers and tarot readers looking to make the transition to reading professionally.
I really love reading cookbooks, but to be honest, I’m a harder sell for mixology books because I’m pretty clueless about alcohol. Basically, I know it gets you drunk and sometimes it tastes better than other times! I usually only go for themed mixology books, like Tequila Mockingbird and Gone With the Gin. So taking a mixology book and fusing it with elements of witchcraft and paired crystal magic — that part was actually an easy sell for me.
The Antichrist and I
I’m a huge fan of Nicole Oquendo, & I have loved everything published by Bone & Ink Press. This collection is, like many of Oquendo’s chapbooks, a themed collection of hybrid work (I’ve taken to calling their work “proems” because they live in the liminal space between poetry, prose, & magic spell/invocation).
The Loneliest Show on Earth
This book is really unique — it’s one big fabulist poem, separated into movements, kind of reminiscent of Erin Belieu’s Black Box. The overall conceit is a circus show, the idea of “running away to join the circus” & each movement examines recurring themes, like desire, identity, & loss — specifically, the loss of an insular community — your own band of circus performers.
Many Restless Concerns (A Testimony): The Victims of Countess Bathory Speak in Chorus
Is Many Restless Concerns a conceptual literary work? Collection of threaded persona poems? Historical-fiction-in-verse? Narrative poem? All these definitions are accurate, & none capture completely what Many Restless Concerns “is.”
You know that one book that knocks the air out of your lungs? The one that teaches you all sorts of things on a craft level, & makes you grind your jaw in utter admiration & (respectful) envy because you wish you’d written it? The one that makes you determined that the next thing you write is going to be *on their level*? You know that book?
Yeah. This is THAT book.
The Vertigo Tarot
Anything that brings together Rachel Pollack, Neil Gaiman, and Dave McKean can’t go wrong, and this deck showcases that. The forward by Gaiman is everything you’d expect and want to read, affirming the idea that creativity and the occult are symbiotic entities that bring forth new ideas, new narratives, and new perspectives.
The Asylum Oracle
** spoiler alert ** This is easily my favorite oracle deck, and it’s both friendly and accessible to readers at any stage, whether or not you’re already familiar with Emilie Autumn’s music or Asylum world.
Les Vampires Oracle
If you’re a fan of the artwork of Jasmine Becket-Griffith, then you’re probably already aware that this is one of many Blue Angel decks (often paired with a Lucy Cavendish guidebook, though sometimes with other collaborators) that use Becket-Griffith’s artwork to approach different Oracle deck themes.
The Fantod Pack
This is a very small 20 card Edward Gorey oracle deck — ostensibly created by Madame Groeda Weyrd, a Finnish/Egyptian divinator and author of Floating Tambourines and The Future Speaks Through Entrails.
So, basically, *exactly* what you’d expect of an Edward Gorey oracle deck.
No one — and I mean NO ONE — writes a messy love story and human reconciliation quite like Tiffanie De Bartolo. This author has had my heart since the 90’s, when Dream for an Insomniac came out. For every decade of my life, Tiffanie DeBartolo has given me a book to help me get through the euphoric highs and soul-crushing lows of love, friendship, figuring out what you want, and understanding how to forgive those who hurt you, and how to forgive yourself for those you’ve hurt. In her body of work, love is an unavoidable, glorious mess that well-meaning people make, and it’s also the exact thing that becomes their saving grace.
The Buckland Romani Tarot
This is one of my older tarot decks, a deck that was gifted to me by a friend. Since they gave it to me, the original edition (2001) has gone out of print and has become quite rare and expensive, definitely a collector’s edition. It is also one of the most beautiful and interesting decks in my collection, one I enjoy working with for personal readings as well as reading for others.
I’ve been eyeing this artist’s decks for a while, finally settling on the Grimalkin Tarot when a cat came into my life to live with me, and the cat enjoys when I read tarot, so this deck seemed appropriate.
Guardians of the Night Tarot
This deck is very much like other decks by this particular creator — that said, if you like one of their decks, you will likely appreciate most of their decks. If you don’t like their work, then this deck is unlikely to change your mind. Unlike some of their other decks (specifically, The Crow Tarots and Grimalkin), this deck has a great range of animal life depicted in the cards.
The Forager’s Daughter Tarot
by Jessica Lei Howard (1st Edition) This is one of the prettiest, highest-quality independent tarot decks I’ve ever backed. The style of the deck is Art Nouveau, with the same delicate flourishes and attention to detail that the style is known for. The deck comes in a sturdy, attractive lidded box for shelf-friendly storage, and […]
by Jeremy Hush This deck is destined to become a classic, because it’s great for readers at any stage from beginner to advanced. The guidebook packs a lot of knowledge and wisdom into its short 65 pages, and included one customized card spread and a small blank notes section. The cards come in a sturdy, […]
Publishing Goblin’s Oracle Dice
by Seven Dane Asmund This is a really interesting one to rate and write about, because it feels part divination book and part RPG book. There is also a “cheat sheet” PDF that comes with these items. There’s either a set of dice, a set of oracle cards, or both, depending on your preference. The […]
Tarot of Mystical Moments
This is a surrealist digital art collage deck, and the art of Catrin Welz-Stein will appeal to fans of decks like her Oracle of Mystical Moments (great to read with both, more on that deeper in the review), Liz Houston’s Dreamkeepers tarot, Elisabeth on Earth oracle, Cult of Weimar, the surrealist art of Carrie Ann Baade or MANDEM, etc. If you’re not a fan of digital art collage, this deck is unlikely to sway you. But if this art is your jam, this deck will become a favorite.
Kitchen Table Tarot
Wow. I read a lot of tarot books (and consequently, a lot of tarot books geared toward novices) and all I can say is that it’s exhilarating to see tarot readers of my generation (Gen Xish) coming into the field of tarot writers. Like Michelle Tea’s Modern Tarot, this is, I believe, an instant classic in terms of learning and teaching tarot.
by Barclay Mountain Co This is an independently produced Oz Tarot deck that includes illustrations inspired by the whole of the Oz series by L. Frank Baum. It comes in a sturdy, 2-piece rigid box for easy shelf storage. The interior of the box is the yellow brick road, which was a delightful detail to […]
Tea Leaf Fortune Cards
This is a very unique addition to your tarot collection, combining traditional tasseography symbols (many of which have been combined to distill tasseography into a manageably-sized deck, and by “manageably-sized,” I mean 200 cards – 182 tasseography symbols, 12 month cards, 6 Astral House cards.)
Nicoletta Ceccoli Tarot
Mini deck is around the size of a standard bridge deck, only slightly smaller than a Lenormand deck. The mini version comes in a heavy, 2-piece lidded box that feels like it might be linen. Even on the smaller sized deck, the printing quality is premium, and you can appreciate the detail of each card. The cardstock is substantial and delivers a satisfying crack from a bridge shuffle.
Tarot of the Sweet Twilight
This is a truly unique deck, and you’d never really guess that at a glance, which makes it one of my favorites. Because of its interesting approach, I tend to reserve it for lunar readings and special occasions — it doesn’t have the feel of an everyday deck (for me, YMMV). For me, it’s like using “the ~fancy~ plates.”
Cult of Weimar Tarot
Of all the decks in my collection, I have never been quite as besotted with a deck as I am with the Cult of Weimar deck by Joan Marie of Rabbits Moon Tarot. As an undergrad, I studied German Literature, Film, and Culture, with Weimar German film being my most-loved class during my studies. I stumbled across this deck before it was re-printed, and was ecstatic when the creator announced the second printing. This deck was worth the wait.
This deck is a gorgeous, minimalist yet still ornate interpretation of the traditional imagery of the Rider Waite Smith deck, produced independently by the creator on Kickstarter.
Tarot Elements: Five Readings to Reset Your Life
What a great book! This book is the intersection of a tarot technique/craft book, a self-help book, and a life coaching book. The book is organized into five sections, each of which corresponds to an elemental theme, includes an introduction to the element and the theme, a tarot spread/program, case studies of the spread in action, and an exercise or “homework” to use with this spread to transform a tarot reading into a tool to implement real, tangible, sustainable change in the life of the person being read for (or for using yourself.)
I wish that I’d had this book when I started reading tarot in the 90s, but as I realized from the anecdotes included throughout the book, that’s because Michelle Tea is in my age range and was learning all the stuff that’s in this book. So, I guess the takeaway is that this book exists NOW, and what a lucky thing for all the new readers getting started who get to use this book as one of their primary