I have read or used most of the books here, and will list others that are recommended.  Email your suggestions for Thoth and tarot related reading to me: tarot (dot) inspiration (at) gmail (dot) com.

Banzhaf, Hajo and Akron.    The Crowley Tarot: the Handbook to the Cards. U.S. Games, Stamford, Conn., 1995.

Fondly known in our family as "the purple book" this book deserves primacy in this list, if only for the fact that I have bought multiple copies over the years to replace those I have worn out, lost or given away.  It is the first book I reach for, both for its scope and the ease of understanding. The top of each entry has a quick summary including the light and shadow energies of the card.  The text gives an overview of the card and describes the divinatory energy for general purposes,  professional (work) concerns and relationships. Each card is cross-referenced with appropriate runes, astrological influences, I Ching hexagrams, music, sacred sites, holidays, etc. As one amazon reviewer noted, it is not a quick reference, but I learned the most from it.  Perhaps the most fun aspect to me was comparing the I Ching hexagrams to the cards, which really opened a new layer of meaning.

Arrien, Angeles.     The Tarot Handbook: Practical Applications of Ancient Visual Symbols.  Jeremy P. Tarcher/Putnam, New York, 1997.

This is probably the second book I reach for, in part because it has a very  different point of view.  This book takes a strong psychological approach,   looking at the tarot as a journey through consciousness.  The section on the Major Arcana has a variety of lenses through which to view the material, as an outer mirror, as a growth symbol, as a life symbol, etc. and the appendices offer a variety of spreads and new ways of looking at this deck.  Also a quick reference guide to all 78 cards at the end, brief timeline of tarot, and extensive bibliography/reading list.

Crowley, Aleister (writing as The Master Therion).    The Book of Thoth.  Samuel Weiser, Inc., York Beach, Maine, 1999

No discussion of the Thoth Tarot would be complete without including Crowley's own work, but I must admit I found it daunting.  However, for students of Thelema, it is the primary reference work for these cards.  I will say that the time I spent with this book yielded good fruit, but the branches were a bit high.

DuQuette, Lon Milo.     Understanding Aleister Crowley's Thoth Tarot.  Red Wheel/Weiser; San Francisco; 2003.

This book brings Crowley's ideas from lofty heights of the Book of Thoth down to earth, explaining the concepts in simple language.  There are explanations, diagrams and connections I have not seen elsewhere, and represent a lifetime of study of Crowley and the arcane arts.  I have not worked extensively with this book, but applaud the author for decoding Crowley so well for the rest of us.   Lon Milo DuQuette posted on the original Tarot Inspiration website as this book was in the final stages prior to publication.  I wish I'd paid more attention.

Ziegler, Gerd.   Tarot: Mirror of the Soul.  Red Wheel/Weiser; York Beach, Maine; 1988.

This book, and the companion volume, Tarot: Mirror of Your Relationships, were the very first tarot books I used.  These books are fairly simple in their approach, but the interpretations are somewhat different from those derived from Crowley's work.  Easy to access, easy to understand, don't get hung up on the typos. Unless subsequent editions have been heavily revised, there are both language errors (translated from German) and spelling errors.  The information is useful and usable nonetheless.

The images on this page were copied without permission from, but I include them here in the interest of fair use to represent the work of the original authors.  I included links to both and the publishers so you can browse either at your leisure. I have no connection, monetary or otherwise, to the publishers or to, so obtain them as you will.

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