In Iceland since 1944 it has been traditional to give a book on Christmas Eve. Unlikely other parts of Europe, during the Second World War paper was not rationed, and the tradition of Jólabókaflód was born. Whilst reading and storytelling has been a intrinsic part of Icelandic culture for centuries Jólabókaflód, (loosely translated as ‘Christmas book flood’) has been instrumental in continuing to birth a wonderful nation of book lovers.
I often think of a tradition as something that began way back in the annals of time. Now, whilst 1944 may be just that to many, it is still our recent past, and that got me thinking. Broadly speaking you need three things for something to become a tradition – a large group of people participating, the activity being passed from one generation to the next, and respect and acknowledgement of the past.
This year, my family will be receiving a book on Christmas Eve – who knows, one day this may become a family tradition!
Here’s wishing you all a Happy & Healthy Christmas.
In my opinion, their are few things lovelier than browsing the shelves of a book shop. All those wonderful unread stories sitting patiently waiting to be explored, it’s like being able to choose a vacation for your mind, something I think we all need right now.
With continuing restrictions thumbing fresh pages and getting that wonderful woody hit of paper is not always possible. However, you can still do your bit to support those small businesses who have been hit badly by this pandemic. Before you take the ‘major corp’ easy option and press the ‘buy now’ button, take a breath and think. Is there a local business that needs you more?
Local books shops are a part of our communities – your community! Local booksellers are a font of knowledge, and can often recommend new and exciting books you may not otherwise have thought of. By definition of where they are (ie. near you), they can point you in the direction of local authors or books with a local twist. Even if you can not visit the shop in person there is still a way you can support them.
Bookshop.org is an online bookshop with a mission to financially support local independent bookshops. Their aim is to build up the network around local book shops and those who support them in an effort to keep local bookshops an integral part of our culture and community. You can use the map to look up your local bookshop, buy online and the store you’ve chosen gets 100% of the profits.
If you’d like some recommendations please take a peak at the books I’d be happy to recommend here. All the books featured within my Bookshop.org store front I have read. I’ll be adding to the lists regularly. So, what are you waiting for? Happy Shopping!
Disclosure: If you buy books linked to my site, I may earn a commission from Bookshop.org, whose fees support independent bookshops.