Our family tradition is to give and receive and read books for Christmas.
I remember feeling a flood of relief when I realized I could be the "Book Auntie" and give my nieblings books—because while I might not relate to what's popular with little kids—books I know. Books I love.
It was only recently that I learned that everyone in Iceland is just like me!
They celebrate Jólabókaflóðið.
Let's break that word down:
Jól a = Jul or Yule, Christmas.
bók a = book
flóðið. = the flood
Jólabókaflóðið roughly translates as "The Christmas Book Flood."
Every year in Iceland, a big catalog of books comes out before Christmas. Everyone places their orders for book gifts. These presents are opened on Christmas Eve, and then you retire to bed with hot chocolate and your stack of books. How wonderful!!
Not everyone celebrates Christmas, of course, but at Socratica we always celebrate reading and literacy. So I hope you will join us every year for this tradition!
Here's what's in my Jólabókaflóðið book stack!
The Spare Man by Mary Robinette Kowal I'm so danged lucky. I received a copy of this book from Mary Robinette herself! Along with a special host of goodies including a dog named Gimlet and a boarding pass for the ISS Lindgren. I peeked and there's a map of the ship in the start of the book, and it's a truth universally acknowledged that all wonderful books have a map in the front. I'm such a fan of MRK (do you know her Lady Astronaut series or the Glamourist Histories series?) and I feel a special kinship since we are both launchies.
She Made Me Laugh: My Friend Nora Ephron by Richard Cohen I've run out of Nora Ephron essays to read. Gods could she write—to say nothing of her movies. She was taken from us way too soon. I'm hoping a little of her magic rubbed off on the people around her, her friends, coworkers, the people who were lucky enough to be in her magic circle.
Blake, Jung, and the Collective Unconscious by June Singer I love Blake, and I love Jung. Put the two together? Sounds like a marriage made in heaven (no hell this time, William). Blake was certainly tapping into something extra. Primordial. Was it the Collective Unconscious? Maybe I'll find out!
The Owl Service by Alan Garner Have you ever come across a book that everyone has read and you've never even heard of? How does that even happen? So apparently this is a classic (A Carnegie Medal winner, even) and I know nothing about it except it involves owls and Welsh folklore and that's good enough for me.
Wishing you a peaceful Winter Break with many good books for company,