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Book Review: The Victorian Flower Oracle by Patricia Telesco

I was searching for what seemed like ages for a book of flower meanings.  It took me weeks before I could finally decide and it was more impatience (and a good price) that made me hit the buy button rather than knowing I had found the perfect book.

I looked at so many books that I admit to getting confused and the book that turned up wasn't at all what I had expected.  The book has 221 pages, black and white illustrations and no color photos. This is not a glamorous coffee table book, but I wasn't disappointed and this is probably one of the most magical books I own.  As well as folklore meanings and history for over seventy flowers there are also extra notes and information that I hadn't expected to find, for example, on page fifty-four tucked away under 'geranium' is a recipe for geranium punch which as the author states is idea for summer rituals and romantic rites, on page forty-four you will find instructions for clover honey, on page one hundred and fifty is a recipe for a healing cream and on and on you will find little snippets of information on how create a variety of magical plant related lotions, potions and beverages. 

However, the main magic of this book is that Patricia Telesco encourages you to build upon the knowledge on these pages and create your own flower oracle.  I was thrilled to find this was the main idea for the book.  I can't think of a better way to learn the meaning of flowers than to create your own little flash cards that can be used as a personal oracle deck. But don't expect any detailed instructions or examples.  The information is covered in few paragraphs at the beginning of the book and it's really the readers job to take Patricia Telesco's suggestions and get creative.

I love how unpretentious this book is.  The recipes nestle in the paragraphs like little gems waiting to be uncovered.  There is no long winded build-up or trumpet-blowing, self-promotion.  The author quietly presents her information in simple plain text that seems fitting for a book about flower meanings.

First published in October 1995, I believe this book is now out of print but you can follow my affiliate link by clicking on the picture below to find offers from third party sellers on Amazon.