I am very happy I bought this book. I didn't have many expectations but I wanted someone to answer my questions. I didn't require the book to be difficult or easy, to explain Grand Tableau or not, but I wanted someone to show me how this works, to prove it to me. I haven't had great experience with my readings before and although I did readings for myself and friends, something was lacking, something was not clicking, something was not right. I thought that memorizing the combinations and learning theory in a nerdy way would help me achieve accuracy in readings.
While practicing my Lenormand readings on one of Facebook groups, I kept seeing people talking about "The Essential Lenormand" by Rana George being one of the best Lenormand books ever. I already had a Lenormand course purchased from another author and I thought that I should stay content with that. However people kept talking about "Rana's spreads" and "Rana's keywords" and "Rana's ways". I had not heard anyone say one bad word about the book and seeing it was 408 pages thick, I bought it.
I went through the beautiful, big, thick book with an amazing glossy cover (which feels great) and was extremely happy to find out author's personal life story in Lebanon. I was very touched by the long years of war that the author had experienced. I was also impressed by the story with the French uncle. For some reason, it all sounded like a painful fairy tale. I loved this sentence: "With our escape to the United States, I made sure to bring with me five items I cherished the most: my Lenormand deck, my polar bear, my only Barbie (wearing an off-white lace wedding dress), my diary, and my makeup case." I was very grateful that the author shared such an emotional past. I thought: "Yes, this is the person I would like to learn my card reading from!.
The book consists of 4 parts: Introduction, "Beginning with Lenormand", "A Closer Look at the Thirty-Six Cards", "Reading Techniques and Spreads" + several useful appendixes and glossary.
In addition to all the basic information on individual cards, there was a personal story attached with each card. The story was from the author's personal journal and they were real readings with real outcomes, all predicting the future, warning, clarifying and guiding. For me, example is the best way to learn. Reading those stories, I immediately got it. I understood how Lenormand worked, I felt I knew how to do it now.
After reading cards for a while I started getting dreams fulfill, thoughts "come true" images "manifesting", my every daily draw seems to "click" lately. This is all thanks to Rana George and her book. Her personal experiences and daily draw shares, has made me believe in cards (I didn't believe 100% or I'd better say: "Something lacked"). Also, her advice on focusing one's mind on the question as much as possible helped me to get accurate answers! Also, I never knew I was "allowed" to pull several times on the same question but I started doing that and I get the same answer 3-4 times.
on 15 April 2014
Finally a book that really explains how to use the Lenormand, in great detail and with lots of examples! All my other books by so called renowned writers can go out the window, lol. Most only give explanations per card and some spreads, they only confused me and made me put my deck away, time and again. Rana explains numerous spreads, including the grand tableau. Finally someone that takes you through "how to read a GT" step-by-step!
I'm so happy, I feel confident again that I will indeed get the hang of Lenormand (finally!). I've been busy with it for years, asking advice on fora, buying & reading books, none of which gave me the info this book has given me (esp. a thorough explanation on the GT!). I felt so discouraged, thinking it wasn't for me after all, but the cards kept calling, so I kept trying, getting more and more confused.
If you want to start with Lenormand, this is your 'Bible'!
There are few Lenormand books available in English and I had been waiting several months for this one on pre-order. I read the Tarot professionally but came across Lenormand last year and fell in love with it.
This book is undoubtedly packed full of useful information on every card. Every card is given several pages with meanings for circumstances and questions around love, health, future, money or even timing and for that it is one of the best books I have come across on Lenormand but the one area that every beginner struggles with is 'combinations' and there is very little of this book that helps with combinations. Yes she gives one or two examples and there is a very small (only a few pages) section towards the back before the spreads etc, that touches upon combinations, how they work and how to do them, how to practice them for yourself etc but personally I do feel it is not enough. So for that part of a reading (which is the basis of the Lenormand System) there is no quick and easy reference inside this book. It is not about being spoonfed but it seems crazy to spend so much time and effort explaining each and every card but give little real help on some standardised combinations to help you until you learn your own way of combining. For that I had to remove 1 star.
Unlike Tarot, lenormand is traditionally NOT about using your intuition and seeing what you pick up from the cards etc but it IS about standard meanings and combining those meanings in a pretty simple and straight forward way but there is so much to learn when you are trying to learn Lenormand. If you follow any lenormand forums you will find card combining is where most people struggle and I think a little help should have been given with this book.
Other than that, it is highly informative, well written and one of the best books on card meanings that I have come across.
on 22 April 2014
The Essential Lenormand by Rana George is - on every level, a beautifully crafted publication. To anyone who is new to the Lenormand divination system this is an excellent place to start in that provides so much practical insight and guidance to the newbie and yet at the same time provides a wealth of information to established readers of the cards.
Full of supporting images and diagrams as well as specific guidance on how to apply card meanings to different elements of life this book is both a great read and a useful reference. The authors includes anecdotal stories that help the reader to understand how diverse and yet powerful these cards can be in the hands of a skilled reader.
A highly recommended book from someone who does not give 5 stars too often to products!
on 14 March 2014
I'm completely new to Lenormand having been a Tarot reader for some 12 years, I really wanted to try my hand with another divination and Lenormand was the one! I had heard good things about Rana George and her expertise in this field, so ordered both the kindle edition and paperback edition of her new book.... I'm still awaiting delivery of the paperback but have the kindle edition... It is wonderful, so easy to understand and follow, Rana is warm and friendly throughout! There is so much info in the book but Rana's style makes it a pleasure to read.. I was a little worried about learning Lenormand as I felt my tarot knowledge would hamper my studies (the two divination systems are completely different!) but that is not the case, I'm loving this book and I'm learning so much from it... So I would highly recommend this book, either kindle or paperback form, or both lol, to beginners and even the more experienced, there is something in there for all levels of Lenormand students! Brilliant book... Thank you Rana for writing it!
on 5 August 2015
The Lenormand “method” is a lean one. You’re working with something that calls a spade a spade. Directive, specific, and helpful. So when a book comes out introducing and explaining that same method, at an impressive 300 + pages, you can be pretty sure it is going to go one of two ways: either it’s by someone who knows the method inside out, or it’s going to a lame and pretentious tome of incongruities and drivel.
Fortunately, Rana George’s The Essential Lenormand is most definitely the former.
Rana’s book is divided into three parts: Part 1 – Beginning with Lenormand; Part 2 – A Closer Look at the Thirty-Six Cards, and, Part 3 – Reading Techniques with Spreads.
“Beginning with Lenormand” sets the basics down. Rana goes through the importance of consistency and the need for direct questioning, as well as touching on the minor variations that exist within the Lenormand method which have woefully been dubbed ‘schools’ in the past and built up into a life of their own. I smiled, happily, to see Rana encourage her readers to “predict, predict, predict” – such a vital exercise for anyone to learn how this deck talks and to listen and learn from both mistakes and successes.
Within the “A Closer Look at the Thirty-Six Cards” section, Rana works through each of the petit-Lenormand deck’s symbols at some impressive length. For each symbol you learn its main meaning along with some illustrations done under headers such as “time” and “future” and for describing someone.
At the end of this, Rana concludes with an anecdotal reading, further emphasising how the card can be read, as well as giving reference to the traditional and what is the real Lenormand method, distance. Due to Rana’s progression and personal use distance is not covered in-depth but it’s wonderful to see it here.
The meanings given here are traditional within the ‘Philippe Lenormand’ sheet’s tradition. I could recognise and understand where Rana was coming from, at all times, even if I did not always agree i.e. here the Whips has ‘a sexual energy’ and the Fox is connected to employment. Minor differences which occur at all times, from reader to reader. Nevertheless these are always explained and subsidised with Rana’s own experience and background so that someone who works differently is not isolated or ‘corrected’. Thus I think this is perfectly understandable and should be expected of any author.
Finally, within Rana’s “Reading Techniques with Spreads” we are guided through several spreads, including a Sun-Sign based astrology reading, and the Grand Tableau which gives you a method of working through all 36-cards and a useful “Combination Drills” section. For a neophyte Rana does provide enough here to get you going and more, and enough information for someone struggling to come back, re-gather, and try-again.
Only Caitlín Matthews has managed to provide the masterly tone and non-intimating clarity Rana George achieves here. The meanings given are traditional, rooted within those same meanings used for over one-hundred years, but also influenced by Rana’s own unique experience. With the latter, this is delivered by way of context, derived from experience arising out of tradition, rather than absolutism or ‘revolutionising’ as other authors have fallen foul of whereby anything other than their “take” is left out and wrong.
One cannot review this book and not mention Rana’s own story which is touched by Civil War, harrowing circumstances, and finally a new beginning. What this underpins is not only a spirit full of hope but the practical uses and unique advantage of this oracle in day to day life. Whilst you will be horrified, and then inspired, you will be left in no doubt why people cherish this deck so much.
A wonderful book and one that I recommend.
on 1 June 2014
In my opinion, the book is well written and the plus are the personal stories about each card.
They make the memorizing process and understanding much easier.
The overall information is very good.
This is a good buy.
on 16 November 2015
More than any other cartomancy guide (Tarot, Lenormand or Oracle) this is absolutely a practical users manual. It's the one you keep at your elbow and the one you will use to do readings when you know nothing and have to go to the book for everything. I would have called it The Practical and Comprehensive Users Manual. "Essential" makes it sound like some kind of summary but it is absolutely not. Encyclopaedic more like.
It's great strength is the comprehensive lists of meanings for each card. In different contexts different meanings are appropriate for the same card. For instance for Fox, Future includes the meaning "trap," Health includes the meaning "misdiagnosis" and Money includes the meaning "risky investment." The sections are set out in a rigid format which is instantly useful. The list of Sections is Future; Woman or Man; Work; Love; Health, Body and Spirit; Money; Time or Timing; Advice or Action; Orientation; Objects and Areas.
Each card also has a story from Rana's own experience to illustrate it and as she was a teenager and young woman in Lebanon during the civil war they can be pretty dramatic. For instance watching her father running back from the shops with bombs exploding behind him after one particularly unfavourable reading, and relatives being gunned down after opening the door to visitors.
There is plenty on spreads though and Rana is a great user of the Grand Tableau so if you ever felt intimidated by it, she is your best guide
Mysticism has not yet crept into Lenormand practice so you don't get astrology or the Kabalah thrown at you in a Lenormand guidebook. Rana George is the most most practical and down-to-earth exponent of a singularly practical and down-to-earth system and if that's what you like, nobody does it better.
on 14 September 2014
Well written and informative but does not show every combination, however its a book you would want to have if you are interested in lenormand
on 28 April 2014
This is a fantastic book and has become my go to reference on the Lenormand oracle. The wealth of experience in using the cards that Rana demonstrates throughout the book is a boon for any Lenormand student, with plenty of real-life examples relevant to 21st century life. It also works great as a Kindle book due to the excellent table of contents that allows you to jump straight to the card or section needed.
Thank you Rana for bringing this much needed book to the market. It's worth at least twice it's current price. Love it, love it, love it!
A very happy customer!