Posted by: Nyxks | February 18, 2007

The Fortune Telling Book

The Fortune Telling Book
by Raymond Buckland © 2003
Visible Ink Press
ISBN 1-57859-147-3
568 page
$24.95 (U.S.) $37.50 (Canada)
Reviewed by: Mike Gleason

Some of the entries in this massive book are a bit mystifying to me. There are over 400 articles and the vast majority of them are easily seen in their relationship to divination. Joan of Arc can be connected, even if only marginally, because she told the Dauphin she has been told by God that she would see him crowned. Astral projection is, in my opinion, a bit harder to connect with divination.

Entries on major forms of divination run several pages, but even little known ones receive passing mention, and far more detail than most books on the subject provide. This is one of the most extensive, and comprehensive, books on the subject I have ever encountered on the subject.

While reading this book I found many forms of divination with which I was unfamiliar. Many of them had been merely names mentioned in the writings of others. The author of this tome, however, has assembled data from sources both common and obscure in an easily accessible, easily understandable, and (even more importantly for many individuals) easily affordable volume.

This book makes it possible to learn about the personalities who influenced the modern understandings of divination and psychic phenomena, as well as about the phenomena themselves. It also provides valuable sources of information for further exploration. As well as a comprehensive resource list of both print and on-line sources at the end of the work, each article also lists sources.

It doesn’t contain a great deal of information regarding the details of using most of the divinatory systems (except for well-known ones such as Tarot, astrology and the like), but the information is considerably greater in detail than will be found in most books on the subject.

While this is an excellent book in general, perhaps one its biggest attractions for me, personally, is the overall excellence in the production. The photographs are clear, the line drawings are easy to understand, there are minimum of editing errors, and the print used (even for the notes on sources) is easy to read.

It isn’t a book which needs to be in every library but if you are interested in divination it needs to be in your library. Whatever your feelings about the author (and I, personally, admit to mixed feelings), Mr. Buckland has done a very real service by producing this book. I highly recommend it.

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