Being new to runes, I picked up this set to play around with while I learned the system.
"Gain ancient wisdom with Runes and take a peek into your future. Included are a set of 24 glass runes, a cloth to do your runes casting on, and an 88-page book."
The above excerpt was taken from the back of the box. However, the runes in this set are PLASTIC, not glass. How the publishers are able to get away with this blatent lie is beyond me. It was disappointing when I opened them, only because I felt duped. Howevever, the plastic runes served my purpose just as well as glass ones would. I just wish the box had been forthcoming. If it had claimed plastic runes inside, I still would have bought them. And I would have been perfectly satisfied.
The kit comes with a white satiny-polyester cloth measuring approximately 8.25" x 10.75". The runes are housed in a small plastic ziploc-type bag. You'll need to get your own bag to house them and draw from.
(Note: The image of the set for sale at Amazon shows a velvet bag. Mine didn't come with this - so I can't guarantee yours would either.)
The runes themselves measure approximately 3/4" in diameter and are circular, rather than rectangular, so it's difficult to select one as definitively upright or reversed. (Runes have different meanings when drawn reversed.) They are rounded on top, like little domes, with flat bottoms. The rune pieces are black, and the symbols are painted with gold ink, which looks nice in contrast.
There is no blank rune included in this set. From what I've read, the blank rune is a fairly recent addition to rune casting, and not traditional. But for those of you wishing to utilize the blank rune, this set does not include one.
The little book (measuring 2.5" x 3") begins with a brief history of runes, followed by a few pages on magic and divination. For each rune, there is a full page image of the rune symbol, and on the opposite page is the name of the rune, pronunciation, the letter it symbolizes, the meaning (one or two keywords), and associations (more keywords). The meanings are followed by a chapter on rune casting, and three spreads. The book's back cover tucks into a slit in the inside of the box, so it stays put for storage.
The book's meanings are extremely condensed. Example:
Meaning: humanity, mankind
Associations: awareness, the self, knowledge, collective conscience of humanity
For the beginner, I think this is fine, as it gives a quick foundation, without overwhelming one with too much to learn at once. But if you are serious about becoming proficient in the art of divination by rune casting, you'll definitely need to invest in full-length books on the subject.
If you want an inexpensive set of runes, this one filles that niche, as long as you're okay with the plastic pieces. You'll read everywhere that you need to make your own runes with wood, or some other organic material, if you want the set to work properly for you. Rubbish. These plastic bits worked just fine for me, and gave me tremendous insight into my readings. A symbol is a symbol, whether it's painted on plastic or seen in the clouds floating above. Of course, having a nice set of runes carved into wood or river rocks would be more aesthetically pleasing to me, but I don't believe they would be any more "accurate", aside from the convenience of their shape (I would select an oblong design, due to the nature of reading reversals in this system).
This mini kit is fine for the beginner, or as a secondary set to carry around with you without having to worry that they might get lost or damaged, as you might with a fancier set of runes.
(See my blog for images of these runes and readings I have done with them.)