Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


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A (Mary) Gentle thing: The logistics of Carthage

Rats and Gargoyles by Mary Gentle, is one of my favorite novels of all time, and Mary Gentle has always been on the list of authors from whom I hope, one day, to learn something.
What I find particularly appealing about Gentle’s work is the idea that the reader should do their job: think, connect the dots, fill in the blanks. This is part of what makes the Gentle so “difficult” but also, I believe, so rewarding for those who have the courage to face the reading.

In the past few days I received as a gift a copy of Cartomancy, the volume that brings together all the short fiction by the author (excluding the stories of the White Crow series, which are found in a separate volume). It is one of the many collections of short stories that came to me for my birthday – and I thought … why not do a series of posts, a piece on each short story?
And why not start with the stories in Cartomancy?

(also, this is a the first in a series of posts that I will do on my Patreon, both in Italian and English – this one is freely available here too, and on my Patreon page)

Let’s try.

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The turn of a friendly card

2swordsI can’t find my tarot deck anymore – it’s here somewhere, but ever since I moved to the country, I’ve been unable to find it.
Misplaced, not lost.

I had an interest in the subject, in cards and divination and so on, as a kid – what with dabbling in stage magic and reading the Tarot books by Piers Anthony.
I got my tarot deck as a joke, in the mid-80s.
A set of Hanson-Roberts cards – beautifully drawn.
With time I learned how to read the cards, and I read some good books on the subject (Alejandro Jodorowski!), and so on.
Now, let me get this straight

Do you believe in UFOs, astral projections, mental telepathy, ESP, clairvoyance, spirit photography, telekinetic movement, full trance mediums, the Loch Ness monster and the theory of Atlantis?

My answer, Janine, is No.
And yet…

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