One of my most favorite Icelandic Christmas traditions is the exchange of books on the evening of the 24th of December. After a feast, which begins promptly at 6p, presents are opened by all. Included in the gifts is always the traditional gift of a book. The rest of the evening and the entirely of Christmas Day is spent curled up reading their newest treasure.
More books are published and purchased in Iceland than in the rest of the world. This is so wonderful to me. I began reading at the age of three, and I’ve never stopped. I got one of my degrees in English – the others were in Philosophy and Psychology. There is nothing more precious to me, aside from my family and my oven, than my library.
In Iceland, we picked up a children’s book for the twins, and I selected: Someone to Watch Over Me by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir. I chose this book partly because it was in English, and partly because it was in the best sellers section. It was an excellent selection! Someone to Watch Over Me was first published in 2009. The author, Yrsa Sigurðardóttir, writes both children’s fiction and crime novels on top of having a career in civil engineering and two children. She has published 12 books total.
► Ranking: #cleandiaper
Someone to Watch Over Me
The tale is of a young man convicted of burning down a care center for disabled young adults where he was a resident. Sigurðardóttir artfully weaves together his story with the story of the family of a young girl who died the same evening, through the eyes of the lawyer who is assigned to represent Jakob as she unravels the connections.
I really enjoyed this novel. It was a fast compelling read. Sigurðardóttir lays out the pieces and convinces you that you’ve got it figured out, until you learn that you had it all wrong. I highly recommend it!
► For Kids: This is definitely not a children’s book, but we also picked up a book for the twins: Trukkar og Tæki.
Since this trip, we’ve made it a new tradition to pick out a book from every place we visit! It’s become a fun tradition, and we love choosing something from every location. Do you have a favorite tradition that stems from your travels?
► Nap-Time Version: My selection for book of the trip.