Once again, February held one of the most magnificent events of the year; the Lifeline Book Fair. Unlike last year, I didn’t go in with specific books in mind or a budget I foolishly thought I could keep to. This time, I went prepared for everything.
Armed with my grandma trolley, a drink bottle and all of my savings, I charged forth. The first pavilion, filled with non-fiction, held my attention only long enough to check the Writing Guides section, then I broke through to the second pavilion. Here, standing at the top of the ramp, looking down at the rows of tables, each filled to breaking point with books that have, for some strange reason been sent out to find a second life, I was giddy. This was the fiction pavilion. This was my calling and my home.
I walked past strollers as I skimmed the children’s titles finding a couple of wonderful books for my nephews, then gave up all thought of others to find a year’s supply of reading material for me.
Australian fiction, fantasy, sci-fi, romance, young adult. Old gems and new favourites. I found them all. Whenever the crook of my arm began to overflow with books I would transfer them into the trolley I pulled behind me, take a swig of water to keep myself going and stand up to once more peruse the spines.
Each book I picked up, whether to buy or to replace, held the promise of a world and characters which would change me forever. How can one being be altered by so many wisps of imagination from past writers? How can so many thoughts be contained not just within the pavilion, but within the covers?
Before leaving, there was the compulsory cull. This year, there were two books in the stash which didn’t make it out with me. Two books stayed behind to be found by other people. Twenty-nine books have taken up residence on my to-be-read shelf. With any luck, that should keep me entertained until next year when I will do it all again.