Book Recommendation: ‘The Christmas Book Flood’ by Emily Kilgore

Recommended by LIZ WELTER, Co-owner, Novel Bay Booksellers

A delightful Christmas tradition that started in Iceland is slowly spreading around the world, and you can learn more about it in a new picture book that’s designed for children but is wonderfully inspiring for anyone.

The Christmas Book Flood describes a custom in Iceland, where friends and family share gifts on Christmas Eve. But these aren’t just any gifts – they’re books. Readers gather around tables or fireplaces, sip hot chocolate, eat candy and read, often throughout the night. It’s nice to nestle in your home, reading, with those you love and cherish.

The tradition started during World War II, when many things were rationed. Paper was not rationed in Iceland, however, which fostered a healthy book market in which Icelandic publishers began marketing and releasing their book line-up during the months before Christmas.

With much of the world in darkness and gloom at Christmastime during WWII, Icelanders found that giving books was a wonderful custom because books share tales that inspire, uplift and provoke thought. 

Now many families around the world – including some in Door County – are welcoming and embracing this Icelandic tradition. Maybe The Christmas Book Flood will find its way into your home.

Related Organizations