#AW80Books Round-up: Christmas Edition (in that it’s hastily organised and I ate fruitcake while putting it together)

Here is the results of a search about for Around the World in 80 Books posts. If you have done one and I’ve not mentioned it, let me know and I’ll add it. Some of the blogs below have more than one #AW80Books post up, so be sure to click on the tag on their sites.

First up, Mme Bibi Lophile and The Dinner by Herman Koch.

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The Blue Bore has been reading The Story of a New Name (2012) by Elena Ferrante

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Eloise in Wanderlust read Tschick, by Wolfgang Herrndorf, book review (English title:Why we took the car)

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Fiction Fan read Black Narcissus by Rumer Godden 

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Shout at me if I’ve forgotten you! Christmas has reduced me to a panicking, disorganised shell of a woman, and I’m pretty sure someone replaced my brains with Play-Doh while I wasn’t looking.

And finally a an article about jólabókaflóðið, the ‘Christmas Book Flood’ that happens in Iceland each December as books are a very popular gift. I did offer to give my mum a list of books I’d like, just to make sure she got me something I’d really use and appreciate, however, she didn’t take me up on the offer, and the I’d bet actual money on the chance that the box she has given me to put under my tree contains expensive, good quality china for the kitchen that alas,  wil not be to my taste and that I will probably never use. It will be too good for everyday use and that’s pretty much the only use I use things for. I’ve made it to 40 without having a proper, grown-up dinner party, getting to 80 will be a breeze.

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And this is why I am promoting jólabókaflóðið, as this is something we need to adopt, pronto. Forget Black Friday, forget the bizarre new habit of Facebook posts where people put up pictures of the piles of presents under their trees, in an obscene display of consumerism that is bound to make those who struggle to provide a Christmas for their families feel inadequate. Forget unwrapping things that cause a forced smile while mentally rearranging and designating cupboard space in which to hide the item, or wondering if they’d ever find out if you sold it on eBay.

Christmas should be about seasonal celebration, religious celebration if you’re that way inclined, candles, Muppets, singing, Toblerone for breakfast, charitable acts of goodwill, affordable and thoughtful gifts, the lumpy feel of a stuffed stocking, the lumpy feel of my stuffed thighs in January, and what I love the most, pretty lights and covering everything I can with seasonal greenery.

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