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Powerful divinatory device, helpful decision support tool, or aesthetically pleasing work of art – for whatever reason you might like to choose, interest in tarot cards has been surging in recent years. And along with that rise in searches for information on the tarot has come a number of reinterpretations of the tarot artwork based on modern themes, including pop culture references such as this wonderful Twin Peaks-themed tarot deck we mentioned a few years ago.

For those who are either new to the topic and fascinated by it, or are old hands but love exploring the artwork of the various decks, here’s something that should pique your interest: our friends at Strange Attractor and Morbid Anatomy have joined forces on a new publishing project to produce an illustrated guide to the art and history of the tarot.

They’ve just launched a crowd-funding campaign with publishers Unbound to raise the necessary money to produce the book, titled Stars, Fools and Lovers, with awards for supporters ranging from pre-orders and signed, limited edition hardback versions of the book, through to tarot readings and classes and other cool stuff.

Stars, Fools and Lovers will…

…contain an array of cards drawn from original and forgotten decks as well as creative reimaginings by contemporary artists. Alongside these images, the book will explore how, over centuries of use, the tarot’s archetypal imagery has evolved and the cards’ meanings have shifted. It will investigate the hidden history and many interpretations of the Major Arcana, deciphering the archetypes behind each figure and plumbing their complex histories, and trace the ways in which artists and illustrators from around the world have reinterpreted the Arcanas according to their cultural backgrounds and the problems they faced.

This book includes a history of the tarot and its use, as well as instructions on how to read the cards intuitively, to follow its traditions without dogma and suggests ways to experiment with the cards to find inspiration and enlightenment. The book will also present the thoughts of a variety of professional tarot readers about the pleasures and pitfalls of practical cartomancy.

Internal pages from Stars, Fools and Lovers

This looks like it will be a luscious book on a fascinating esoteric topic – get over there and get in early if you want one of the limited edition hardcovers.