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The reason why I have never owned many decks of Tarot are simply because I never found a deck I really loved. I have always used the traditional Rider Waite deck and in terms of imagery and symbols, this deck is the best. But after so many years, who doesn't tire of the same deck? The colours in the Rider Waite deck include an awful lot of bright yellow, and this has worn me down. I wanted a softer deck and also something more whimsical, but other than seeing a lot of dark, witchy decks and other decks I didn't resonate with, I could never find anything.

Then I saw someone using the most stunning deck with sublime colours on each card and I knew I had to have it. Not only were the cards beautiful, but they were large cards, in fact I have never seen such large cards anywhere before. I fell in love with them before I bought them to be honest. Even though I don't use tarot a lot in readings, I knew I deserved to get this Angel deck. All of Doreen's cards (her oracle cards etc) are easy to source because they are readily commercially available. I advise buying them online because book stores charge more for them. Even paying for postage, they are a steal if you buy them online. They were cheaper than I expected.

I researched the look and feel of the cards before ordering them and was in two minds about some of the Minor Arcana cards. I was, however, particularly attracted to the Major Arcana which feature Archangels on all 22 cards. As I work with angels, I am naturally attracted to them and I'd never heard of tarot with the well known angels on them. Now that Doreen has done this, it seems incredibly obvious. Each picture is an intricate work of art. You could literally resize the pics and hang them on a wall (if you were into fantasy or angels that is). I am blown away by the quality of these gorgeous pictures.

The Minor Arcana are in 4 themes, but, instead of the traditional wands, swords, cups and pentacles, the cards are named for their astrological element, i.e. fire, air, water, and earth. What is so clever though is that the images include wands on the fire cards, cups on the water cards, etc - meaning that if you love and are used to the traditional Tarot, you will feel right at home with these images. To add a twist (and remember these are Doreen cards) she has put in her usual dragons, unicorns, mermaids and fairies. I am not a particular fan of these mythical creatures. Or are they mythical? Some, including Doreen, claim they are real. In any case, this isn't my cup of tea so I wasn't sure until I got the cards in my hands whether they would work for me. They do work for me and this is a surprise. The pictures are just so pretty, inspiring, whimsical and safe. You feel uplifted when you look at them. In fact, I am now thinking of getting another of her packs featuring mermaids and dolphins, and this isn't me. Or maybe now it is.

One of Doreen's claims about the cards, as per the box they come in, is that they are "100% gentle, safe, and trustworthy." I will only agree with 'gentle and safe' as far as someone using the cards who isn't familiar with the Tarot. This is because there is just no camouflaging the negative cards in Tarot, no matter how beautiful the pictures are in this deck. There are a lot of cards that have negative meanings. The cards are about Life, and bad stuff happens in life, no use pretending that it doesn't. And any genuine seeker or reader wants to hear both the good and the bad. So when I do a reading and I pull out her Three of Air card (the 3 of Swords), my heart sinks and I get that awful feeling. In traditional Tarot, the picture shows a heart pierced by three swords; the meaning is one of loss and sadness. In Doreen's 'safe' pack, the picture is intentionally less graphic, and there is no heart being torn asunder. Even though the picture is 'safe' as she says, this is not a fun card, nor is it meant to be. And there are many other negative cards with the same story, all with formerly graphic pictures replaced by nice, harmonious scenes of frolicking mythical creatures. But true Tarot experts aren't fooled. Unless you're unfamiliar with the Tarot, then who knows, maybe you are fooled.

Apart from this claim that her deck is 100% gentle and safe (I read that to mean no shocks or surprises, but the Tarot always shocks), I can't find much else to critisise this deck for. The colours are wonderful; they are not all light or fluffy colours either; most of the hues are darker. Dark green for the fairy cards, dark red for the fire cards, dark blue for the unicorn cards, and then a lighter blue for the mermaid cards. On the back of each card is the image of Archangel Michael in a deep blue/black setting. Each card is large, glossy, and silver gilt on the edges. I don't know why people complain they are hard to shuffle. I have hands the size of children's hands, and I am shuffling them from the top of the pack, not side on, and it isn't any problem at all. I love the large size of these cards. They simply wouldn't be as lush if they were smaller.

They are ideal for beginners due to the messages written right on the bottoms of each card. With the meanings right there to read, you can never fail to understand what the cards are saying to you. Whilst this deck comes with a very brief handbook, I would advise buying some serious books on reading Tarot and the deeper meanings of the cards if you want to become a serious reader. Overall, I have to give this deck five out of five stars, simply because I have never come across such a beautiful, awesome deck of cards before. I will try to get some pics up on this page of the cards in time.

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