King Billy and the Royal Road - The Fool's Journey Through a Child's Eyes
Part of understanding tarot for me, is taking the cards and looking at them through different lenses. Whether that be various correspondences, associations or just applying their energy through another form altogether - music, for example.
The process of doing this inevitably expands my personal understanding of the card and also helps to find real examples of it in everyday life. King Billy and the Royal Road, written by RC Ajuonuma and published by Silverwood Books is a piece of creative art that does just that. It is this beautiful and unique translation of the Major Arcana, in a way you've not seen it yet.
I read this book both with my son, who is seven, and by myself and the interesting thing is, depending on your audience, there are different things you may take away from it. With my son, we got lost in the flow of the words, the wonderful weaving of sentences - which really is very pleasing. By myself though, as a 35 year old woman reading what is, in essence, a children's book, I got even more out of the story. For anyone who has read tarot, even in passing, you will instantly recognize the archetypes described. But even with the familiarity, there are still surprises. I couldn't help but smile at the ways in which the various Major Arcana were used to bring the story along - they all had their place, cleverly carved out, without it feeling that that the archetypes were being forced to fill a spot for the sake of their inclusion.
King Billy and the Royal Road could be enjoyed by children and adults alike - especially if those adults have a penchant for the cards! And from a child's perspective, I think the book could be enjoyed for the surface story, visuals, and narrative flow alone - but for the child who is prepared to take in the gravity of the tale, there will be no shortage of lessons to learn from Billy's journey.
I'm so pleased to have this in my collection now, as both a captivating story and a tarot reference book. If you want pick up a copy for yourself or your child (recommended!) you can do so here. Or, you can also learn more about the book and the author through the official website.
Until next time...