Hello! I’m visiting some family right now and we’re getting to spend the last few days of Hannukah with them, which is really nice. There’s also a ton of snow where we’re visiting, which is really fun. My dog is especially excited about it, and she’s having so much fun in the snow!! Anyways, I’m excited for this week’s LTB topic, so let’s get into the post!
Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly bookish meme created by Rukky @ Eternity Books and has been hosted by me since April of 2022! Each Friday, there is a discussion topic for bloggers to write about. This week’s topic is holiday books.
Christmas books and movies dominate the media during the winter season, but Christmas isn’t the only holiday being celebrated. Do you like reading holiday books at all? Have you ever read a holiday book about another religion? What about a holiday book not set during the winter season? If you’re religious but don’t celebrate Christmas, do you feel represented in the holiday media?
I like reading holiday books. I like watching holiday movies. And when I say holiday, I really mean Christmas. Because that’s the majority of whats out there.
The first non-Christmas holiday book that comes to mind is the Matzah Ball, by Jean Meltzer. It’s a really great book, and Jean Meltzer is a fantastic author. It’s a romance novel about a Jewish author who writes Christmas novels, and it’s a festive and unique Hanukkah story!
It’s really nice to have a fun and festive romance set around Hanukkah. When I read it last year during Hanukkah it made me feel represented in a way I don’t usually feel around the holidays.
And while there are definitely some fantastic, non-Christmas holiday books out there, Christmas novels like Dash and Lily Book of Dares, by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan are much more common. (Although the Dash and Lily series does have some interesting Jewish roots).
As a Jewish person I’m always looking to read books about Jews, particularly ones who I can relate to. What’s so special about The Matzah Ball is that it’s not only written about Jewish characters, but the characters’ judaism is a part of their lives and their celebrations.
It’s just so refreshing to see your culture, and your holiday being celebrated, and it really brings in some more holiday spirit.
But what about holidays not in Winter? That feels even more rare. The reason why Hanukkah is so well known, so commercialized, is because of how close it is to Christmas. So while Hanukkah isn’t anywhere close to the biggest and most important Jewish holiday, if you’re going to read a Jewish holiday book, it’s probably going to be about Hanukkah, not Purim or Rosh Hashanah or anything outside of winter.
It’s important that publishers are seeking out a diverse range of holiday stories. We need to hold publishers responsible for their selections of books, because everyone deserves to be represented, and to see themselves and their cultures represented in fiction.
Publishers should be working to publish books that represent many cultures, and should be publishing them throughout the year. This is important for people feeling represented, and it also helps others become exposed to more holidays, and more cultures!
This week’s posts:
Thanks so much to everyone who participated, and don’t forget to go and discover some new blogs! If I missed your post, let me know in the comments so I can add it up here! And, if you don’t want your post linked up here, or you want your blog linked differently just let me know.
Do you like reading holiday books? Have you read any non-Christmas holiday books? What responsibilities do you think publishers have in terms of holiday diversity? Chat with me in the comments below!