Gifts for Book Lovers

I think books make a great gift- I requested a pile of them for Christmas and I can’t wait to see which ones I get! It’s like the gift that keeps on giving, especially when it’s a book you wind up really loving. When I can’t think of a gift for someone, I figure a great book is always a safe bet. I have pretty eclectic taste when it comes to reading material, so I culled my collection for a few that I think would make excellent presents for many different tastes. Some are old, some are new, but all are great in their own way!

For the mystery lover:

Tana French’s novels are total page turners, but without sacrificing great writing, detailed character development, and emotional intensity. In the Woods is my favorite so far!
Alice LaPlante’s Turn of Mind is told from the point of view of a physician accused of murder while her mind is deteriorating with dementia. Unreliable narrator, anyone?
Louise Penny’s A Trick of the Light is one I’m currently reading-it got rave reviews from and made the New York Times list of top Notable Crime Books of 2011!

For the romance lover:

Ali Shaw’s The Girl with Glass Feet is a unique tale of two outsiders who fall in love while one battles a highly unusual affliction.
One Day, by David Nicholls, follows the on-again, off-again relationship of two opposites, Dexter and Emma. I LOVE this book.
The Time Traveler’s Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger, is an old world romance with a twist.ο»Ώ

For the lover of interior design:

Decorate, by Holly Becker, has lots of electic inspiration and gorgeous photos.
American Fashion Designers at Home is a substantial coffee table book and a great concept-who wouldn’t love to peek into the home of their favorite fashion designer?
Interiors: The Allure of Style is one of my favorite design books-Mary McDonald creates beautiful, distinctive, and timeless rooms. ο»Ώ

For the foodie:

Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is bursting with fascinating information and rich descriptions of delicious meals. I cannot recommend this book highly enough, absolutely loved it.
A Homemade Life, by Molly Wizenberg (of the lovely Orangette) is a great collection of stories accompanied by yummy recipes. It’s just a warm and delightful memoir, the perfect book to curl up with on a snowy day.
Blood, Bones, and Butter, by Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune NYC, is a gritty, raw depiction of what it takes to become a successful chef and restaurant owner.
For the fashion plate:
Nina Garcia has impeccable taste and it shows in The One Hundred, in which she shares her list of 100 items every stylish woman must own. Full of gorgeous eye candy by Ruben Toledo.
Parisian Chic, by Ines de la Fressange-because who doesn’t want to learn the secrets to being chic like a French girl?
Amanda Brooks’ I Love Your Style is fun, modern, and full of inspiration.
For the history buff:
Tracy Chevalier’s Remarkable Creatures is a simple story of two friends who hunt for fossils and make some surprising discoveries-Chevalier is such a great writer and I enjoyed this book MUCH more than I expected to.
In the Garden of Beasts, by Erik Larson, takes a really interesting tack on WWII by describing the time period leading up to it, from the point of view of the US ambassador in Berlin. I don’t read much non-fiction but this was a REALLY good one.
Catherine the Great, by Robert K. Massie-I haven’t read it yet but see my post here about why I’m looking forward to diving into it!
For the lover of “coming of age” tales:
Curtis Sittenfeld’s debut Prep was dubbed by some a Catcher in the Rye for girls-I consider this a modern classic.
The Marriage Plot, by Jeffrey Eugenides-see my review here. Loved it!
Tom Wolfe’s I Am Charlotte Simmons-his writing can’t be topped and this book will have you laughing out loud.
For the reader who loves a good page turner:
The Little Stranger is DEFINITELY in my top five-Sarah Waters crafts a seriously creepy, atmospheric tale that will give you chills and keep you guessing to the very last line.
Room, by Emma Donoghue, is a total original-told from the point of view of a five year old boy who lives with his mom in “Room,” where they’ve been held captive for his entire life.
Scott Smith’s The Ruins is another one in my top five which I cannot recommend highly enough (and please do NOT judge it by the rather poor movie made in it’s image)-4 college grads go on vacation in Mexico, where an unexpected and unpleasant dilemma awaits them.
What do you think? Anyone read any of these and loved them (or not loved them?) Any of these on your wish list?

Photos by Jackie for York Avenue

Leave a Comment

  1. Next stop- the library!


    Published 12.12.11 · Reply
  2. Published 12.12.11 · Reply
  3. Dorothy wrote:

    Great Post!! This will be my go to list when I'm looking for my next book, and my next book….

    Published 12.12.11 · Reply
  4. love these recommendations! i might have to check out the mystery novels!!

    thanks for visiting my blog!

    Published 12.12.11 · Reply
  5. Aw, great post! Always love discovering great new reads!!

    Published 12.12.11 · Reply
  6. Blood, Bones, & Butter is on my nightstand now!

    Published 12.13.11 · Reply
  7. Alexa wrote:

    Oh my goodness…love these recs. I am a book freak. Animal Vegetable Miracle was wonderful and Time Travelers Wife was very romantic…have to check out the rest!

    Published 12.13.11 · Reply
  8. Ashley wrote:

    These are great suggestions! I have the Mary McDonald book too and love it! Such gorgeous photos!

    Published 12.13.11 · Reply
  9. Al wrote:

    Def. Def. adding some of these to my reading library. Actually to my paperbookswap account, not that I will ever see them if I do.

    Re-read the Time Travellers Wife again last week. I have NO idea why but once I started I couldn't stop. I need to invest time in books I haven't read!

    Published 12.14.11 · Reply
  10. Kari P wrote:

    This is a great list! I adored Time Traveler's Wife so I think I'll check out your other suggests, particularly One Day.

    Published 10.29.13 · Reply
  11. Thanks! I'd actually love to re-read both, they were so good. I liked both movies as well, though not as much as the books (of course).

    Published 10.30.13 · Reply