We got Ben Noble from Amateur Tarot Pod to lend his reviewer’s eye to the Harry Potter tarot! Check it out!
Deck Name: Harry Potter Tarot
Creator(s): Eleonore Pieper
Publisher & Year: Self-Published, 2017
If you want to feel like a Harry Potter poseur, then boy oh boy do I have the tarot deck for you, friend. Because the fact of the matter is, compared to Elly Pieper, you don’t know Jack (or Harry…or Narcissa Malfoy. Remember her?). You also probably don’t know much about the scene in The Prisoner of Azkaban where Harry is in Lupin’s office and puts his hand on a candle and decides to use a memory of his parents to supercharge some spell. Remember that? Elly does. I bet she does really well at that infamous Harry Potter sporcle quiz where you have to name the 200 most mentioned characters. Remember that?
We all owe Elly a debt of gratitude for getting off her broomstick and making this deck happen. My Amateur Tarot Pod co-host, Brian, and I have been pretending to make a Harry Potter tarot deck for years, and now, thanks to Elly, I don’t have to pretend anymore…or learn how to draw!
I also don’t have to learn how to read the tarot, because Elly’s deck includes keywords for every Minor Arcana card and the digital guidebook is chock-full of wisdom both on the traditional tarot as well as her magical additions.
The Major Arcana mirror the traditional Rider-Waite-Smith art and feature all of your favorite characters from the books—like Colin Creevey, the Hogwarts Express, and the door that kills Sirius Black. Oops. Spoiler alert? The Minor Arcana, on the other hand, will be harder for lazy tarot readers such as myself to interpret. The illustrations are based on something called the Crowley-Harris tarot deck, which, as far as I’m concerned, is not a real thing and results in them coming out as sort of “half-pips.” They don’t portray characters but do feature a variety of symbols that Elly defly ties back to the wizarding world in the guidebook.
As for the court cards, Elly has made the executive decision that Cups are Slytherin, Wands are Gryffindor, Swords are Ravenclaw, and Disks aka Coins are Hufflepuff. And while I commend her for staking out this bold stance, she is wrong. On some episode of the podcast, Brian and I very clearly lay out the definitive Hogwarts House-Suit pairings which are: Gryffindor-Wands, Ravenclaw-Swords, Hufflepuff-Cups, and Slytherin-Coins. But if you can get past that, then this deck is pretty good, especially if you like Harry Potter!
While I do realize that art is hard and time-consuming and thankless, I do wish there were more color in the deck. The sepia-toned pencil sketches drain a bit of life from such a vibrant and beloved series.
- The cards are slightly larger than your standard fare.
- The deck shuffles satisfyingly well—the cards aren’t super thick (but not in a bad way).
- The deck comes in a black bag…at least it did when it was gifted to me!
- The guidebook is online-only but it is incredibly thorough and detailed.
You can read the 40+ page guidebook and look at all of the card art on Elly’s DeviantArt page.