“Austin Spare was a prolific outsider artist with a lifelong interest in mysticism and divination”

13 new Halloween reads to chill, amuse, inform and terrify—Agatha French, Los Angeles Times; mentions Aleister Crowley without resorting to the Crowley Corollary, in an entry about Lost Envoy: The Tarot Deck of Austin Osman Spare by Jonathan Allen, from Strange Attractor.

Halloween is almost here and the days are getting shorter — which means more time to read spooky tales under the cover of night.

Seeking the company of vampires, witches or mysterious tarot decks? How about modern hexes or the true story of Lincoln’s ghost? Here are 13 new titles to read by jack-o’-lantern light:

  1. “Lost Envoy: The Tarot Deck of Austin Osman Spare” edited by Jonathan Allen (Strange Attractor Press, $40.95)

Part of a British occult revival during the early 20th century, Austin Spare was a prolific outsider artist with a lifelong interest in mysticism and divination. (He was also an acquaintance of notorious counterculture figure Aleister Crowley.) In 2013, long after Spare’s death, his hand-painted tarot cards were discovered in London’s Magic Circle Museum. “Lost Envoy” reproduces this mysterious deck.