Christmas Book Flood | Recommending reading

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May Jólabókaflóð bring you reading joy

‘So this is Christmas, And what have you done,’ as John Lennon once sang.

Hopefully, by now you’ll have enjoyed the Jolabokaflod season of discussing the books you’d like to receive for Christmas and the special delight that comes from spending money on books you hope will share your mind, love and soul with your loved ones.

Not long to go, now: one more sleep until Icelanders eat their big Christmas meal, open their presents and spend the evening reading their new books.

As John and Yoko continued, ‘Another year over, And a new one just begun.’

Well, almost. But for the Jolabokaflod Book Campaign, the New Year can’t come soon enough. We have plenty of Good News to share when the time is right to make 2018 the year when the world gets to hear about the Christmas Book Flood.

Merry Jólabókaflóð, everyone.






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The Advent of #FutureBook17

The Bookseller’s showcase conference – FutureBook 2017 – was held in London, England, today. According to the trade journal of record, ‘FutureBook brings together leading thinkers in publishing, retail, editorial, writing, marketing and tech, along with speakers from other industries.’

What better occasion is there, on this first day of the Advent calendar, to open a window on the Jolabokaflod Book Campaign for 2017?

The Book Bulletin will evolve between today and International Book Giving Day (14 February 2018) into a rich collection of your recommendations and favourite books. Get involved by reading our advice for the book trade and by contributing to our Book Bulletin: Winter 2017 crowdfunding campaign.

To mark FutureBook 2017 today, the 1 December ‘Book of the Day’ recommendation is provided by J K Rowling, one of the best-known writers in the world, who is famous around the world for her novels, films, stage plays and philanthropy.


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Book Bulletin catalogue for Advent

Our Book Bulletin is evolving fast, with recommendations from readers and the book trade. We shall be promoting the new catalogue vigorously with a view to launching a social media marketing campaign on 1 December 2017, the first day in the Advent calendar.

The banner ad marketing that we ran in email newsletters circulated to readers of The Bookseller in early November was the most successful such campaign that the trade journal has run in 2017, in terms of page views and click-through rate.

The Book Bulletin is poised to be a great success, through Christmas and beyond to International Book Giving Day, to encourage people to buy books to give to loved ones as presents. Happy browsing.




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Jolabokaflod visits the Frankfurt Book Fair

The Jolabokaflod Book Campaign is about to announce itself to the global book trade.

We are in Frankfurt between 11-15 October 2017 to tell the world of books about our take on the Icelandic Christmas book flood tradition.

We are attending Frankfurter Buchmesse (the Frankfurt Book Fair) to introduce the Jolabokaflod Book Campaign to every country exhibiting at this year’s event – the biggest book expo in the world – and to collect book recommendations for our next Book Bulletin (Winter 2017).

The Frankfurt Book Fair describes itself as ‘the most important international trade fair for content, the centre of the international media world and a major cultural event. Nowhere else in the world does the publishing and media industry show itself from a more diverse, innovative and international side than during these five days in October.’

Our new catalogue and Book Bulletin crowdfunding campaign will launch on the First Day of Winter in the Old Nordic calendar (21 October 2017) and conclude on International Book Giving Day (14 February 2017).

So many titles from which to choose; the time draws near for deciding which ones to buy to give to loved ones for them to read this Christmas – and which ones you fancy treating yourself to get hold of and read.

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Jolabokaflod in the USA

The world of Jolabokaflod is expanding.

We are in New York between 31 May and 4 June 2017 to introduce the Christmas book flood tradition to the US book trade and the North American literary world in general.

We are attending BookExpo America (the US book trade fair) and BookCon (the US authors’ convention) to talk about bringing Jolabokaflod to the USA, Canada and the rest of the continent and to collect book recommendations for our next online catalogue, which will be launched in June.

So many books, now is the time to read them.

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Valentine’s Day: receiving books from your beloved

ibgd-poster If books be the food of love, read on: sharing books with the people in your life

Part 3: receiving a book

As the Book Bulletin online catalogue crowdfunding campaign for reading recommendations and gift suggestions comes to an end on International Book Giving Day (also known in some quarters as ‘Valentine’s Day’), Christopher Norris from the Jolabokaflod Book Campaign asked friends, fans and followers of the initiative how they would feel about exchanging books with significant others on 14 February.

How would receiving a book as a gift on Valentine’s Day make you feel?

Hannah Bellamy, CEO, United Way Reading Oasis: Understood

Catherine Clover, author, forthcoming multimedia Aldus Cervus series: Having been given children’s books by my parents on Valentine’s Day when I was young, I know what a blessing it is to have such an intimate and lasting token of their love. To this day, when I read the Valentine inscriptions written lovingly in my now deceased mother’s hand, it makes me feel so connected to her. I feel that there is nothing greater to bring us together with our loved ones than sharing a bound copy of a book!

Andrew Haywardether, Managing Director, Ether Books: When I am the recipient of a book, I find that often my friends are pushing me out of my comfort zone, and that has to be a good thing!

Jessica Norrie, author, The Infinity Pool: Much better than receiving chocolate-cream-filled profiteroles with pink, sugar hearts or any of the other sickly things on sale at this time of year!

Lesley Pollinger, author and Literary Executor and Trustee for the Estate of Frieda Lawrence Ravagli: Loved (and probably stunned!).

Nick Quantrill, crime writer and Hull Noir 2017 team, international crime writing festival: Books can be such a personal thing, so receiving a book you’ll really enjoy shows a genuine connection with your loved one. I’d be delighted to receive a book and think it would be a fine tradition to initiate.

Yrsa Sigurðardóttiryrsa-helmet, award-winning author: Again, absolutely marvelous and I hope my husband reads this.

Hildur Sif Thorarensen, author, Einfari: Very good. I love books. I love educational books. I love crime novels. I love all sorts of interesting reading material.

Karen Sullivan, Founder and Publisher, Orenda Books: I always have a book wish list on the fridge, and receiving a book as a gift on Valentine’s Day would be the most perfect gift – enabling me to be transported, indulge in my favourite activity: reading.

Victoria Wicks, actress, granddaughter of H E Bates: I’d be pretty thrilled to get anything on Valentine’s Day!

How would you summarise the idea of giving and receiving books on Valentine’s Day?

Anonymous advertising executive: A book is a really thoughtful gift because it shows that you know the person inside

Gill Paulicon-gill-paul, author, historical fiction: Flowers and chocolates are lovely, but impersonal and impermanent. To choose a book for someone else requires thinking about who they are, what they enjoy, the very heart and soul of them. And while flowers wither and chocolates get eaten (fast), that book will last for life

Christopher Norris is the Founder and Curator of the Jolabokaflod Book Campaign (twitter: @Jolabokaflod). There is still time to make a contribution to the Book Bulletin cause and receive promotion for you and your passions, projects and interests. Please give generously by 14 February 2017.