Recently I read a 'best selling' young adult writer. I had numerous recommendations to read his work, with people telling me I'd be blown away with his writing.

Now in all honesty, perhaps I chose the wrong book. Perhaps I was in a bad mood, bad place etc when I read it. And we all have different views on 'great', 'good' or even 'okay' books. But I'm afraid I just didn't like it. (It is now nominated for an award which just shows how little I do know).

Over the years I have found that I have become quite a harsh reader. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy a lot of books. Enjoy...not LOVE...not WOW THIS IS AMAZING...enjoy. Which is almost the equivalent of being told your work is...nice.

I became worried. Am I too pessimistic? Have I lost myself and am unable to see the magic?

Then I realised I can find magic.

I worked last weekend when the Pakenham show was on and we had the stilt walkers get ready in the library. It was amazing to see them. The costumes, the sheer theatricality of it all. They were simply amazing to watch. An ethereal, magical quality that enchanted all who saw them.

The next day I took myself off to the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show. Must admit to being a bit disappointed by some of what I saw. Same old, same old.
Rust is in.
Ponds with lilies are in.

But there were a few moments that I thought wow...

Just loved this. The artwork counter balancing the garden.

And this dragon was so enticing, although made of cardboard and not going to last long, he looked great.

Loved the gate for espaliering apples (hello other half!)...

I'm no surfie chick but this mosaic was stunning.

And a few art pieces I thought were beautiful. Love the movement.

I came away with bulbs (of course)- one plant- one letter V (any time there is anything with letters of the alphabet on them, there is never, ever a V- so I was so excited to find one). I also came away with ideas.

Perhaps I could do this, or that...what if I moved that plant, and placed a grouping with touches of gold where it used to be. Would that make the most of that spot?

I simply loved this idea.

A new project in the future I fear.

But I also came away with the knowledge that I haven't lost my ability to see the magic around me. Yes I do read with a more writerly take. So many times I've LOVED the plot or the setting or the theme of a book---then feel a total let down when I feel the author hasn't made the most of it. Hasn't delivered what they have promised.

Yes this book wasn't for me. In time I will read another of his, to test whether it was just that book or if his writing style isn't for me. But that's the joy of having so many books, so many authors out there. Variety gives us the chance to try new styles, new genres, new topics and themes. New voices, new concepts.

There is no excuse to stop reading. I get so annoyed with people saying 'I can't find anything I like.'

Keep looking. There is so much on offer. Take the chance....and keep reading.



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