From the pen of highly respected and world renown expert on cartomancy Stuart S. Kaplan comes the Blue Bird Lenormand deck – a new interpretation of an equally well-loved and admired divination system.
The booklet that accompanies this deck describes in some detail the history of the system’s original creator Marie-Anne Adelaide Lenormand (1772-1843).
This is followed with guidance for the reader on how to create a full 36-card spread known as the Grand Tableau. After a brief few lines giving an interpretation of each of the cards the booklet then includes a sample reading to help users interpret a spread.
The Blue Bird Lenormand deck features the same classic-style form of artwork on its cards but with a slightly unusual twist of also including a short verse that describes the cards meaning.
The deck has been printed on high quality card with just a hint of glossiness about them. Each card measures 5.5cm x 8cm.
The design on the rear is of an single silhouette of a Bluebird set into a floral design. The front of the cards include a small border with a traditional Lenormand style design of image, the verse in the top right hand corner and image of its associated playing card in the left.
Subtle variations on normal Lenormand convention have been woven into the deck including changes to the core interpretational meaning of some cards, their names and important symbolic visual elements.
Sad to say I did not like this interpretation of Lenormand very much. Some of the changes that the author has made seem rather odd to me. I also feel that the inclusion of the associated standard playing cards is somewhat pointless – though this is not the first deck to feature them.
More importantly I do not see the thinking behind the addition of the interpretational verses on the cards for once you do learn their meanings then they are become somewhat pointless and a detraction from the card’s artwork.
Also I feel that they seem to suggest that the user has not made the necessary effort required to learn the meanings behind the cards; which – if someone was using this deck to perform a reading for me, would cause me wonder just how skilled the diviner is!
However, despite the fact that I did not feel this is a particularly good interpretation of the classic Lenormand system of divination I do feel that from another perspective the Blue Bird deck has a lot going for it.
The interpretational meanings given in the book – rather than the rather flowery ones adorning the cards, are excellent. Also the cards mix well and somehow their rather diminutive size is more charming than it is an obstacle to performing a good shuffle.
All in all I would say that if you are new to Lenormand then this might be rather a good deck for you to cut your teeth on but I also feel that if you take to the cards then you will be looking to upgrade it to a more sophisticated and less patronising deck pretty quickly.