Tarot of the Sweet Twilight by Cristina Benintende: a card-by-card feature by Tarot Zamm.
Whispers of twilight twist in the corners of your soul. Surreal images surprise your mind. Colours and curves delight your eyes. Bittersweet beauty stirs your heart. You change, grow wiser, and find that the world is complicated but no less beautiful.
Honesty is imperative. You must know from the start: I love this deck. My heart was lost to it almost a year ago when I was in Italy working in the Lo Scarabeo offices. Riccardo Minetti, the editor there, pulled out Cristina’s original artwork and that was, as they say, that. Later, the little flame in my heart was fanned—again by Riccardo—into a bonfire when I was asked to write the dreaded Little White Booklet. If you think using those books is frustrating, try writing them!
Luckily, Riccardo turned what could have been a wretched experience into a magical one. He knows that my “mental deck” is the Rider-Waite-Smith deck. He knows that it is my wont to force all decks into that mould. So he instructed me to just sit with this art, one picture at a time and forget what card it is supposed to be and what the Rider-Waite-Smith version looks like. Just sit with the art and write down what it says. And so I did.
Product Details (Amazon.com)
Publisher: Llewellyn Publications; Tcr Crds edition (July 8, 2009)
Language: English, Spanish
Product Dimensions: 4.9 x 2.7 x 1.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars
Amazon Customer – September 4, 2009
5.0 out of 5 stars – Lovely Redo for Tarot
This isn’t a typical Rider-Waite clone deck. A fair number of the illustrations depart from the standard symbology, but not so much that the interpretations are totally lost! You shouldn’t have too much trouble adapting to the deck for doing readings from.
But that’s not really why I dig this deck. It’s the look. The colours are vivid, but not overly cheerful. I read a review where someone felt that it was the deck that Tim Burton never made, and I think that is an apt description. It’s got some gloomy outlook amidst the more upbeat cards, and the drawings are rather charming. It’s not as far out there as the Deviant Moon Deck either; it’s stylised without departing from certain Tarot norms.
Additionally, the card stock is a good weight and the finish is not overly slick making them easy to handle. Lo Scarabo’s boxes have a different fold at the bottom that doesn’t roughen up the cards when you put them back in. The little white book is a bit on the sparse side, but that’s standard. The meanings given in it do seem to vary a bit from what you learn elsewhere, but I found them to be relatively easy incorporated twists of other decks.
All in all, charming without being overly cheerful or theme interpretive.