Review by Cricket
This deck is unusual in a few ways. First, it was
started by Yury Shakov - he finished number of the cards, along with the preliminary sketches for the rest -
but the remainder were finished by an unknown Russian artist at his
death. There really isn't much difference in their
styles, the continuity of the deck is amazing. Each
card is rendered in sharp detail. This includes a
border in gold on the face, mirrored on the back. Both
the major and minor arcana are done in full
detail, and this in one of the first decks I have personally
run into printed on a black background. It puts a
whole new cast on the deck, gives it a new feel, has a
different effect on the spirit.
Lastly, even though this
deck was not geared toward beginners (or those
rediscovering the art) it is truly easy to read. Because of the
detail mentioned before, those that do more instinctual
reading instead of using the 'given' or 'proper' meaning
of the cards are given a clear advantage. For
example, while doing the first reading using this deck, the
sun in the four of clubs seemed to pop out at me.
Normally this wouldn't have been something to notice, but
it was pivotal to the reading.
The little white booklet is also a nice help.
The meaning and reversed meaning are easy to find, and
it has the basic ten card spread included.
This is a truly
spiritual deck to me, and I'm glad I bought it. It didn't
'feel' quite right in the store, but as soon as I took it
home and got it out of the box, it clicked with me.
Meanings of certain cards were coming to me just flipping
through the deck. This is going to be the one I can't put
down. (The only complaint I might have is that the back
of the deck is not reversible, so you can see which
cards are reversed.) I would not really recommend this
deck for beginners, since the images and feelings truly
rush out to meet a person and might overwhelm them, but
I am impressed with it.
See sample card images from the Russian Tarot of St Petersburg
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