This is an invaluable tool in the area of emotions and relationships. The use of only 22 cards lessens the chances of the issues of the querant being confused by outside forces. This is definately a pack I shall refer to time and time again. Brilliant.
The Lovers' Tarot consists of just the Major Arcana. Lyle's reason for this is as follows - "While the Minor Arcana is certainly essential for general readings covering spans of time and interest, the Major Arcana always forms the main focus in a spread. It is to the 'greater secrets' that we turn when we are seeking to deepen our understanding". She chose to create a 'Lovers' Tarot' in particular because so many readings are about relationships and she felt that it would enable a much deeper look at that area of people's lives.
The cards are painted in mostly Renaissance style overall but some of them have other elements that seem incongruous, mainly because it appears that these elements have been laid on top of the original paintings. Three good examples of this are a) in the 'Death' card, the black horse is just solid colour and looks like it has been cut out of black card and stuck on top of the picture; b) the fire at the top of the 'Tower' again looks like a paper or card cut-out which has been pasted on, almost as an afterthought; and c) the 'Star' is beautifully painted but there are seven small stars that look like little stickers which, again, have been added later.
Having said that, the cards are beautiful in their own right. It is not the easiest deck to handle as the cards are extremely big, measuring roughly nine inches by four but on the other hand it means that a lot of the small details are much more visible than in some smaller decks.
The book which is part of the package is excellent. Lyle gives astrological and elemental correspondences to the cards, and looks at each card in detail. Her interpretations could perhaps be seen as prescriptive, but nevertheless are very interesting. For each card there is a brief description and explanation of what some of the symbols mean, along with detailed interpretations summed up as follow -
sections entitled, About You, About Your Partner, About the Relationship, About the Future,
and within each section Lyle looks at both the Gift (upright interpretation) and the Challenge (reverse interpretation).
Whilst all this sounds like a lot to take in and perhaps quite complicated or complex, Lyle's writing style is direct and explicit, and her sample readings of 'the Lover's Tree' and 'the Lover's Pyramid' are excellent examples of how the deck can be used.