Illuminating - The Revelations Tarot by Zach Wong

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Zach Wong has created this deck out of his studies of Western and Asian mythology, and it is based heavily on the original Rider-Waite deck. Because the cards are made so that they can be interpreted whether right side up or inverted, this reviewer was initially wary of the accuracy of such a deck. However, the same rules apply for reading, and because they are published by Llewellyn Publications, they get a big thumb's up.

If you are not familiar with reading inverted cards, this is a good way to learn how. Reading reversals can be a tricky process, and the Revelations deck is an excellent tool to learn how to master this divination technique. Illustrated in stained glass style, the deck contains cards and a 216 page guide for use. The Revelations Companion reveals several different spreads that can be used, and is quite accurate. The colors used in the illustrations have been described as "Illuminating."

Wong's reversible artwork distinguishes the deck from other Rider-Waite wannabes. Through layers of symbolism, the book is a much needed resource to wade through the reversed and upright meanings of each card, and should be kept close to the deck when doing readings. It is very apparent that Wong has gone the extra mile to create a useful and purposeful deck and not simply illustrated another Rider-Waite look a like for show.

Major and Minor Arcana cards have been set apart from each other by a series of different masks that the characters wear. The masks represent human conditions and the relation to the gods and goddesses of old mythology. What I liked best about this deck is that it reiterates that the readings are not personal, but can be representations of things simply as they are; you can choose to follow the "Advice" set forth by your reading or disregard it, the cards don't care either way. This pragmatic approach to divination is a breath of fresh air in the tarot world and the deck comes at an important time in our history; another excellent gift idea for the beginner to expert tarot reader and deck collector.