The Chronicles of Destiny Fortune Cards is a set of 60 cards with fantasy art and a storytelling theme. The deck has an eclectic cast of characters and scenarios from stories, myths and legends - The Hero and The Heroine, Accepting the Quest, Pegasus, Downfall, and more. Packaged with a 208-page companion book.
Oracle cards are tricky for me. I am so ingrained into the world of tarot that any other cartomantic system (Lenormand, oracle, playing cards) never really appeals to me on the same level as Tarot does.
One of the reasons for this is because for me Tarot has a well built in story to the cards. The Major Arcana is often taught through the Fools adventure through each Arcana card, called the Fools Journey. Even in the Minor Arcana, a story can be seen as you start from Ace and progress to the Ten.
Lenormand, for example, does not have a story built into it; it is a collection of symbols, without any interdependence on a preceding card or successive card. I think that may be something that bothers me. The same can be said for many other oracle cards, there are no story, but rather random cards with titles.
The Chronicles of Destiny Fortune Cards represent something different and creatively unique in the family of oracles. These cards were inspired by the love of literature, folk tales, myths, fantasy and magic.
Tarot is often explained as a metaphorical unbounded book, shuffling the pages (cards) and laying them out to create a story. This unbound book idea is the core of the Chronicles of Destiny. Each card represents a chapter in the larger story that is told, which you can follow along with the book that comes in the set. Each card (chapter) is part of a continuous story. In the companion book, you will have a color image of the card with the moral of the story below in which provides a divinatory meaning. To the right is the chapters text, the segment of the story this card depicts. Below this is the card definition, a fuller account of the cards meaning beyond the moral of the story. The authors give you tips for when the cards appear next to other cards and how it would then impact the card (like in Lenormand and Tarot).
For example, card (chapter) 41, Conflict. Moral of the story. Conflicts. Arguments, quarrels, strife and upheavals. Card Definition (not a full citation), in order to see where the problem originates check preceding cards. For instance, family or property, it would be Castle (card). Friends would be the Fellowship, work would be Guardian of the Books. Looking at the cards that follow the Conflict can reveal the outcome of the events or provide you insight to dealing with the problem.
The companion book offers a small collection of spreads (six) to use, which play on the themes of novels and literature. There is a story spread. I just pull three cards and read them in a linear fashion.
The packaging of this set of cards is fantastic, kudos to Schiffer for presentation. The theme of these cards is novel and books. The box is created to look like a book and opens up like one revealing inside the companion book and deck. Watch my YouTube video to see the unboxing. The cards have gilt edges; they are glossy, black borders with classy thin gold lines around the images. The backs are not reversible.
Using the cards, I did some practice readings and was able to get direct answers and saw how the cards when weaved together present a story. The cards blend well with one another to provide guidance that is simple in the same fashion of Lenormand. If Tarot and Lenormand could have a child, it would be the Chronicles of Destiny Fortune Cards. They possess a progressive story telling structure like tarot and the simple fortune telling style of the Lenormand.
Overall, I am highly impressed by the production and
presentation. The theme of this work is carried through out
every detail consistently. The premise of which the
cards are built on is creative and is executed
perfectly. The system that was created for this set of cards
shows thoughtfulness and detailed care. These cards
present themselves as a fully developed cartomantic
The Chronicles of Destiny Fortune Cards is another stellar deck from Schiffer Publishing. While not a traditional tarot, this deck functions in a similar fashion. The concept behind the Chronicles of Destiny Fortune Cards is that the Seeker is a hero/heroine of their own unique story. We are all, on a daily basis, a player in many small stories, as well as the overarching saga of our life. These cards help the Seeker to uncover or clarify the story/issue in which they are currently involved.
This is a 60 card deck with no Major or Minor Arcana, or suits. Instead there is a succession of powerful literary archetypes and conventions with such evocative titles as; The Enchanted Emporium, Whispering Hall, Distant Shores, The Warlock, Masquerade, The Baroness, Forest Labyrinth, Phoenix, and so forth. There is a choice of significators – Hero or Heroine, and additional significators Hero 2 and Heroine 2 to represent significant others, be they lovers, spouses, potential partners, or other powerful players in the Seekers life. There are also 4 "Supporting Cast" cards, Ladies Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter, which have divinatory meanings, and can also denote timings in a reading.
The cards measure 70 x 120 mm which is about the same size as many standard tarot decks. The card stock is excellent. The cards are flexible, with a glossy finish, and gilded edges. As with all guilt edged decks the card need to be separated before initial use, then they shuffle smoothly without clumping or being too slippery. The print quality is excellent with crisp, clear images, and no blurring.
The artwork, by Claudia McKinney, is digitally enhanced photographs. This format was chosen deliberately by the deck's creators in order to enhance the feeling of magic realism; it was felt that illustrations would imply that the Seeker was entering a world of total fantasy. The images themselves are mysterious and beautiful, glowing with jewel-like colours, and with great attention to detail. The cast are not contemporary, nor are the settings, but rather mystical and mythological, and quite romantic without being overbought or tacky. The images are framed with a narrow black border, the titles are at the base in yellow gothic-type lettering. Each card is numbered from 1 to 60. The print on the back, a face hovering above a staircase is not reversible.
The box that the cards and guidebook come in is gorgeous – presented as an aged tome. The cover is printed to look like worn leather with old brass hinges, and the edges are printed as a book's spine, and worn pages. There is the usual Schiffer attention to detail – ribbon loops for opening, ribbon hinges to hold the lid in place, and magnetic clasps to keep the lid shut. The box is quite sturdy and can withstand some heavy handling.
The guidebook is 170 pages, plus room for notes. It features an "Introduction" which outlines the development of the CODFC. There is a quick explanation of "How to Use This Set", which really explains what the components of each chapter are and how they function in a reading. Every "Chapter" is in fact an individual card. Each Chapter features a full-colour reproduction of the card in question. There is a box under each picture titled "The Moral of the Story Is:" which are keywords, or a brief summary of the cards essence. There is a short paragraph, an extract from the Chronicle which tells the story of the card, and is intended not only to place the card into context, but to aid the Seeker in remembering the card's meaning. Each card also has a Definition, which expands the divinatory meaning of the card, gives suggestions for how to read the card in relation to other cards, and occasionally offers some timely advice.
There is some lengthy information on how to read the cards - how to care for the cards, preparing yourself to read the cards, how to frame a question. There are 9 divination spreads, from simple 2-card draws, to more complex spreads, including hints on calculating timing, and reading a layout as a story. There is also information about reading for others, ethics, and clearing your deck. Additionally there is a quick reference guide at the back of the book - each card and their keywords. There are no reversed meanings as the cards have not been designed with reversals in mind.
Overall this is a beautiful set of cards, they cover a lot of ground in an interesting and engaging fashion. If you are looking for an Oracle deck that falls outside the established order of things (i.e. large cards with fairly repetitive ideas), then the Chronicle of Destiny is definitely worth looking into. If you would like a change from tarot cards then this deck is a magnificent alternative, a real box of divinatory jewels. No matter if you are an absolute beginner or an experienced tarot reader - you cannot fail with these cards. A wonderful box set worthy of any collection.
“Welcome, Seeker. Within you will find the threshold to another world, a doorway through the written word to guide you through your quest. A thin veil penned with golden ink is all that separates you from the answers you desire. Each card holds a story and the message you are seeking.”
I was in high expectation of receiving this deck, just because of the name! I mean, “Chronicles of Destiny” – who would not be excited! I was not disappointed! This 60 card deck tells a story in and of itself, and helps the reader to discover their personal story. In their introduction, the authors note that storytelling is an ancient tradition, both written and oral, used to impart ageless wisdom. The theme of these cards is that they are a book that tells a story, and that the cards are meant to act as a fortune-telling system that provides insight and guidance. Each card is a chapter in this story, the sequence of which helps the reader to remember the card meanings.
The set includes 60 cards and a 175 page companion book, and comes in a sturdy cardboard box with a magnetic, lift-top lid. (I love the bit of ribbon that one uses to open this box!) The box is crafted to look like a book, with a dark green background, gold hinges, and gold corners. The sides are made to look like the edges of a book. The cover carries the picture of the Guardian of the Books, while the back carries thoughts on the cards, and what they have to offer.
The gateway into this story is the Enchanted Emporium, with the person entering the “Chronicles of Destiny” taking on the role of Seeker. (I just had a very vivid thought that this system would be a lovely app, and certainly has possibilities to become an interactive game!) The Seeker is on a quest for answers to their questions – how much better can it get! The Seeker will receive step-by-step instructions, keywords, in-depth meanings, and more! From the book:
“On a certain street in every town, quietly nestled between unsuspecting buildings and invisible to the undiscerning eye, The Enchanted Emporium waits.
The shop senses a seeker, and shimmers into life, glowing in anticipation for the journey to be taken, the knowledge and secrets to be learnt. Golden lights flicker and dance within, enticing their curiosity to step within and explore.
A solemn child emerges from the rows of ancient books.
“Name?” she enquires seriously.
With the Seeker’s response, the charm she holds begins to sway, silvery chimes from tiny bells ring out into the hushed silence.
“Ah yes, we’ve been expecting you. Please follow me.”
Each card is presented with a color image, a short excerpt from the story, the card definition, and the Moral of the Story, which presents the main keywords for the card. I loved the characters and archetypes presented in this book (i.e. The Hero, The Heroine, Dreams, The Elder, The Lighthouse, Weaver of Words, Book of Destiny, Alchemy, and Phoenix, to name just a few) – they “are” what life is all about! The one that accompanies the Seeker on their quest is The Guardian of the Books. She provides access to all of the other cards/characters, and protects the Enchanted Emporium.
At the end of the book we find sections on how to read the cards, spreads to use (the two card Open Book spread, the six card Summary spread, the seven card Alternate Realities spread, the four card Sequel spread, and the four card Story spread), sample readings, guidelines for determining timing, ethics, and clearing the cards. The epilogue presents a summary of keywords for the cards, as well as a short bibliography.
The cards are 2 5/8” by 4 ¾, of glossy card stock, with gilt edges. The card backs are done in shades of a dusty blue. In the middle of the card we see a female face that looks like a mask, surrounded by an ornate headdress. The face is over a set of what looks like railroad tracks, going off into the mist. The card faces show a black background, with a thin gold border inset ¼” from the side of the card. The card number and title is at the bottom of the card, in gold lettering. The image is centered in the middle of the card.
One of the first ways that I used this deck was to choose a card to focus on for a flash fiction piece. I used Number 13 – Time Flies. Other cards that I really liked include:
The Warlock – Number 20 The card shows a male figure wearing a dark cape and top hat. A raven sits on his left shoulder. The moral of the story is “Delays and holdups. Obstacles. Sometimes theft.”
The Gatekeeper – Number 29 The card shows a female figure, dressed in white, her hands in a position of prayer (palms together). The moral of the story is “Unlocks obstacles or secrets; doors being opened for you. A lucky escape.”
Weaver of Words – Number 38 The card shows a female figure, in a white dress, writing in a book that she holds in her lap. The moral of the story is “Small ideas with big potential, ideas taking off and taking form. The power of words, tact and diplomacy. Writers.
Alchemy – Number 30 The card shows a female figure, dressed in black, with a black top hat. The moral of his story is “Something ordinary has the potential to turn into something extraordinary. You only get out of something what you put into it, but you have the ingredients to create something special.”
Guardian of the Books – Number 2 The card shows a dark haired female looking out at the Seeker. The moral of the story is “Occupation or workplace. Dedication to work.”
The Masquerade – Number 22 The card shows a male figure dressed in black, and a female figure dressed in white, against the back drop of a ball. The moral of the story is “Illusionary situations. Everything may not be as it seems, be careful who you trust. Confusion and clouded thinking. Secrecy.”
Book of Destiny – Number 43 The card shows a dark haired female figure, in a dark dress, with an open book on her lap. The moral of the story is “Destiny is created when you actively pursue it. Whilst fate may present certain circumstances, destiny unfolds once you move towards it. Action shapes destiny.”
The author’s note that a book is meant to be read upright, so the cards should be also. As there needs to be a balance in life, there is a balance of energy in this deck. Listed as “supporting cast” are the four seasons (all represented as ladies), the Hero, and he Heroine. You do not have to be an experienced reader to use this deck, but experienced readers will gain from it. I recommend it for all ages, and all backgrounds. My personal thought is that this is going to come in handy with my writing!