The Creative Tarot: A Modern Guide to an Inspired Life

While typical books on tarot describe the meaning of the cards so one can interpret the future, Bookslut founder Jessa Crispin's The Creative Tarot does much more. Crispin (The Dead Ladies Project) begins by explaining the Major Arcana, the suite of 22 cards pertaining to big life changes, and the Minor Arcana, which consists of four suits, each with 14 cards that represent daily life activities and choices. From there, she designs a system to help people look at, and better understand, their creativity through tarot, using it to solve artistic conundrums. Her insights are sensible and easy to follow for beginners, and experienced readers will find new information and ways to reframe their readings.

In particular, Crispin recommends additional books, films, music and other works of art, up to four for each card, that can help readers better understand the tarot deck. These additional sources have been carefully selected to reveal a deeper meaning and greater understanding of the symbolism, themes and stories behind each card. To understand the Lovers better, her suggestions include reading Henry James's The Tragic Muse and watching the movie Hedwig and the Angry Inch. For the Star, she recommends David Bowie's album Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars and David Cronenberg's film Dead Ringers. Crispin believes that readers can be better, more inspired artists after exploring such diversity of expression, and promotes the use of tarot as a means of self-reflection and self-awareness to further creative pursuits. --Justus Joseph, bookseller at Elliott Bay Book Company

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