Iceland has a holiday tradition that I love! Jólabókaflóð, or “Christmas Book Flood,” is a unique and cherished cultural practice in Iceland. This ‘book flood’ is celebrated on Christmas Eve and revolves around giving and receiving new books. This tradition is often accompanied by delicious treats like hot cocoa, Icelandic chocolates, or even a special beer. It’s a peaceful yet very cherished part of the Iceland Christmas traditions as they exchange books and spend the evening reading together. In light of this tradition, I would like to review three new books I’ve come across this year dealing with lymphedema. What better time than the holidays to cozy up to a good book?

Sress Reduction for lymphedemaSTRESS REDUCTION FOR LYMPHEDEMA

One of my favorite new reads is Stress Reduction For Lymphedema, written by Kathleen Lisson. We all could use a little stress reduction, especially around the holidays, but if you have a chronic disease like lymphedema, stress reduction is crucial. Kathleen Lisson is board-certified in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and is a Lymphedema Therapist (CLT). She has done extensive research on the effects of stress on lymphedema and ways to combat it. What I love about Kathleen’s books, this being her sixth, is that they are full of valuable resources. This book provides step-by-step instructions on stress-reducing exercises that are simple and easily accessible to all. You’ll also discover how stress influences lymphedema and how important it is to address it. Kathleen has put a lot of research and thought into this book to make it a valuable resource for those dealing with lymphatic disorders and those serving them. It’s a helpful book for everyone, especially in these stressful times. 

LYMPHOEDEMA UNITED You Are NOT Alone!Lymphoedema united

Amy Rivera and Matt Hazledine compiled my second choice for reading, Lymphoedema United. If you have ever felt like I am the only one, this is the book for you. Amy and Matt have compiled stories from around the world of people like you dealing with lymphedema. Their stories are vulnerable, honest, and heartwarming. You are not alone, and there is a community out there willing to support you. This book can also be used as a resource to connect through social media with others you may resonate with. Depression and isolation can often be a byproduct of a chronic disease like lymphedema. Don’t let this disease take its emotional toll on you; check out this fabulous book, and if you have a story to tell, you may end up in volume two. 


Last but certainly not least is The Public Servants’ Survival Guide, written by Brenda Viola. You may know Brenda as the host and moderator for educational webinars and the Lipedema Patient Roundtables sponsored by Lympha Press. Although this book is not specific to lymphedema, it is fabulous for therapists and those dedicated to serving those with a chronic disease. Brenda delightfully tells her story through her personal experiences as a public servant. Giving suggestions and tools to help us self-care and “reclaim our joy in the work we love.” She offers signed copies at a discount if you e-mail her at [email protected], and she invites you to consider bringing the workshop of the same name to your organization via Zoom or in person!

What a perfect book to start the New Year with!


Do you have some time off during the holidays?  If so, why not check out one of these books? All three are uplifting and inspiring and a great way to end this year and start the next. Books are one of my favorite gifts to receive and give, and I hope this holiday lymphedema book review is helpful! Have you found any good books that were particularly inspiring that you would like to share with us? Please add to the comments below; I always look for a good new read. In the meantime, here are a few more fun facts about Icelanders and their love of books. 


  • Iceland publishes more books per capita than any other country in the world.
  •  80% of its annual book sales are during the Jólabókaflóð period.
  • The ‘kvöldvaka’ tradition of evening storytelling and reading has been vital for education and literacy since Iceland’s early days.
  • Icelanders read an average of 2.3 books a month, with women and families with children being the most avid readers.
  • Icelandic youth frequently read in languages other than Icelandic.
  • 76% of Icelanders believe it is essential for Icelandic literature to access public support and funding.

Wishing you all the happiest holidays and a beautiful and blessed New Year! Happy Reading!!

Holiday book review

Disclaimer – This post is for general information. Furthermore, the information contained in this blog is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a licensed healthcare professional for advice on your specific condition.


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