Shadowscapes.

This is a stunning deck.

The Shadowscapes Tarot (SST) is a breathtaking example of surreal fantasy artwork. Or 78 examples, to be more accurate.

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An example of the Major Arcana, a Court card, and a small card from the SST.

It follows the RWS structure, with Strength as VIII and Justice as XI, and the suit symbols are traditional, with Coins being called Pentacles. Many of the cards, both Major and Minor, are clearly inspired by the RWS artwork.

So, as a Tarot for reading and divining, if you understand the essential structure of the RWS, than you can understand and use the SST. Now, I am a Tarot traditionalist at heart, and I don’t think there will ever be a RWS derivative that’s better than the RWS itself. However, the SST is nothing short of amazing in its particular rendition of this system.

It’s companion book – aptly titled Shadowscapes Companion – is co-authored by Barbara Moore and the deck’s artist Stephanie Pui-Mun Law. I thought the sections of the book by Moore were unnecessary, but if you are unfamiliar with the Tarot they are perhaps useful. The artist penned each of the actual card descriptions, which I thoroughly enjoyed reading, and which left me wanting more from her.

All in all, the SST is a phenomenal artistic deck with incredible detail. If you’re into that sort of thing, as well as fairies and dryads and the like, I highly recommend it. It is a deck that portrays a world alive and brimming with magic and wonder.

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