The Art of Darkness

The Key to the Kingdom

August 24th, 2010 by Cobwebs

Ace of Spades“Armchair Treasure Hunt” books were immensely popular in the 80s (remember Masquerade?), and Tony Meeuwissen’s The Key to the Kingdom is of that general vintage and ilk. However, unlike most of the other books of its type, this one is worth picking up even though the original treasure is long gone. The puzzle involved clues found in custom-drawn playing cards, and the book includes a full deck of cards that are simply gorgeous.

The artwork on the cards is by turns whimsical and dark, featuring everything from spiders to tadpoles, and despite the intricate detailing they’re actually “real” cards: The suit and number of pips have been incorporated into the artwork of each card, so you could actually play pinochle with them if you wanted. In particular, they’d be perfect for tarot spreads.

Although no longer in print, the book and included cards are widely available secondhand. The puzzle solution and images of several of the cards are here. Limited-edition prints of some of the cards are also available at Folio Boutique.

(via Chintz of Darkness)

Posted in Needful Things | 2 Comments »

2 Responses

  1. xJane Says:

    I like the limited-edition prints; it’d be hard to display the beauty of the deck on a regular basis.

  2. Maven Says:

    I bought this deck in the 90’s and still LOVE it. Every card is a true work of art.

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