I recently came across a rather interesting fact about Iceland that I thought was well worth sharing with my readers. This winter wonderland has a spectacular Christmas Eve tradition of gifting books to friends and family. As I dug deeper, it became clear as to why this icy landmass has such a fond relationship with books and the joys of reading.
As it turns out, Nordic people are some of the most literarily skilled in the world. As much as one out of every ten Icelanders publish some form of work in their lifetime. With authors such as Yrsa Sigurðardóttir and Arnaldur Indriðason, Icelandic novels are rated as some of the best in the world. It’s no wonder the book industry is booming there, where everyone buys books, rather than just a few buying many.
When you consider the Icelandic tradition of book gifts on Christmas Eve, it’s almost no wonder they’re making such an impact on the literary world.
They truly embrace the joy of reading and have made it a wonderful part of their culture. While most people I meet tell me they enjoy reading, many of them wouldn’t consider themselves “readers”. As mentioned above, most readers buy many books a year, but the average American doesn’t buy as many as someone in Iceland.
It’s important that we all rediscover our love of books. Wouldn’t it be incredible if we saw a mass movement towards making book giving a part of our holiday traditions? From a young age and into adulthood, it would almost certainly have amazing benefits to society as a whole.
The joy of books is found in the fantastic stories, the relatable characters, the imagination involved, the smell of the pages and even the design of the cover. Whether Print, eBook or Audio, why not make book giving part of your Christmas Eve tradition this year and on?
Have a fun book related tradition in your family? Share it with me in the comments!
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