2017-Review-Mystical Manga Tarot-Llewellyn Publications

There are few decks that truly make me stop in my tracks but Mystical Manga is definitely one of them. After collecting many, many decks over a period of fourteen years, I have been happy with a lot and let down by some. But few really sang for me. This deck is a beautiful reconstruction of the Rider-Waite-Smith (RWS) deck within a Manga style.

Fated Conspired to Bring This Deck to Life

Almost a decade ago I had first seen the tarot art images by Rann on DeviantArt. I was sorely disappointed when the deck images were just that, artistic renderings that didn't seem to be coming to life anytime soon. But still, I was enamored at first glance. 

When I saw the Mystical Manga deck, I recognized the cards immediately as being the ones that I had viewed on DA all those years ago. I was ecstatic. I am fairly certain I made a fool of myself in front of everyone that day as I gushed with excitement. It was a very long wait to get a deck in my hand. 

The deck, as I stated is a reconstruction of the RWS decks, something a dear friend pointed out to me was that while it was pretty she so wanted to see more done with it. Saying, "It looks like rather than the artist giving us their take on the cards they just fit the original image into a Manga style." which pretty much sums this deck up when it comes to the art. But what art it is. 

Some of the first cards I had drawn from the deck. 

Some of the first cards I had drawn from the deck. 

Reading with the Manga

As I first laid the cards out, I was immediately taken in by the richness of each image, and found that I could read intuitively with it quite well, as well as with the book meanings, because all the requisite symbolism was present.  The kit comes with a full color book though the meanings are somewhat cut and dry. I would have loved to see something done with the book to help bolster this otherworldly, utterly magical deck. 

There is something about magical cards that I have always loved and perhaps it has something to do with the old 90's television show, CardCaptors. I could not get enough, so much so that I have a set of the Clow Cards from the series that I read as oracle cards. They made a wonderful pairing for this deck and I immediately put them together. 

Seen here with the Lock, Sword, Freeze, Through, and Flower cards from the Clow. 

Seen here with the Lock, Sword, Freeze, Through, and Flower cards from the Clow. 

I cannot recommend this deck enough, whether you're new to tarot, and whether or not you intend to read for yourself or others, this deck is one of the best to come on the scene in a long time if you're into all things manga and anime. 

From the stock, to the way they shuffle, I find these cards more than capable of keeping up with my rapid fire reading style. With this deck, perhaps other publishers will take note. Unlike the Lo Scarabeo deck, the Manga Tarot, which barely covers Manga concepts at all, Mystical Manga Tarot proves that if you're going to do something, it is worth the time and energy put into it to do it well. 

Below are some of my favorite cards. 

The Sun, 9 of Pentacles, Ace of Swords, and the Hermit. 

The Sun, 9 of Pentacles, Ace of Swords, and the Hermit. 

If you've managed to get your hands on this deck, let me know what you think. Have you worked with similar decks, like the LS Manga Tarot? What were your thoughts? Leave a comment down below.