Book Review: I Am Arcana

This book review features a debut poetry collection, I Am Arcana by Kristy Nicolle. I am already a fan of this author, and I always thought her writing was poetic. So when I learned she had a poetry collection coming out, I was excited and signed up for an ARC edition.

(Review is spoiler-free!)

Book review I Am Arcana

I Am Arcana official cover art
I Am Arcana official cover art

Summary: A poetry collection divided into the 22 Major Arcana cards of the traditional tarot deck. A collection full of mysticism and self-reflection.

Genre: Poetry

Audience: Adult

Themes/potential trigger warnings: mental health, mentions of assault.

Rating Breakdown

First, I’d like to thank the author for the opportunity to read an ARC edition of this book for an honest review. This poetry was calming, inspiring, and even healing.

Rating breakdown:

  • Meaning: 1★
  • Imagery: 1★
  • Voice: 1★
  • Wording: 1★
  • Structure: 1★

Final rating: 5/5


I Am Arcana delves deep into the meaning of each tarot card and dedicates several poems to each card. I particularly loved the poems related to The Empress, The Emperor, and Temperance because of how deep they struck with few words.


The author didn’t simply base this poetry collection on the tarot deck. You will find beautiful images of each card before the poems dedicated to it. Very pleasing to the eye.


Kristy Nicolle has a unique voice and style that is very recognizable across all her works. I loved her prose in her fantasy novels, and in I Am Arcana, I found that same voice but even more polished and poignant. There is a personal message behind every poem, but it’s there to guide you to find your own meaning.


The author’s vocabulary is vast, but this doesn’t make this poetry hard to understand or interpret. Everything is vivid and easy to picture.


This collection is very well structured and follows the deck of cards, with clear separations between the poems. But the verses and the themes also benefit from clear separations that accompany you into the rhythm of a wonderful and magical experience.