30 November 2016

2016 Christmas Book Gift Guide

Now that tomorrow is December we can officially start thinking about Christmas! Books make a great gift but can sometimes be hard to pick out for others. Each of us picked 5 books that we think would make excellent gifts for just about anyone whether they're a serious reader or not. Hopefully this helps with your shopping this year!

Meagan's #1: Born to Run (2016) by Bruce Springsteen

This autobiography will be the perfect gift for any male or music lover in your life. It's brand new so they likely won't have read it and everybody likes Springsteen. My sister and I got this book for my dad for his birthday recently and he loves it so far! I think this would be an easy buy for a friend, boyfriend, dad, uncle, secret santa, etc. For your enjoyment, here is a picture of my dad reading this on a recent vacation: 

Meagan's #2: Two by Two (2016) by Nicholas Sparks

Every year Nicholas Sparks puts out a new book right before Christmas because he is a smart and commercial writer. Every year I add it to my Christmas list because I am a pathetic female that still loves Nick Sparks books. I think every girl does (Meghan only pretends this is below her). He's famous for books like The Notebook (1996) and Safe Haven (2010) which have both been adapted into movies (as most of his books are). His new book will be perfect for any girl in your life whether its your daughter, mother, sister, friend, etc. It's a great curl-up-and-read-the-whole-thing-in-one-day type of book that makes an excellent gift for any female reader.

Meagan's #3: The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo (2016) by Amy Schumer

You can read a full review of this essay collection here so I won't bore you by talking too much about it. Again, this is brand new so chances are a lot of people haven't read it and I think it would make the perfect gift for any young female. This is a great token gift for your friend, older daughter, or secret santa. Every girl loves Amy Schumer and this book is a good fit even for people who don't read a lot because they could pick and choose essays without committing to the whole thing.

Meagan's #4: Tracks (1980) by Robyn Davidson

You can read Meghan's full review of this book here and she actually got this as a gift for me for my birthday last year so I can tell you first hand it makes a great present. I think the beauty of it is that it's such an awesome read but it's older and not necessarily something anyone would pick out for themselves unless they went looking for it. I think any reader would enjoy this story and it sort of 'resurfaced' when the movie adaptation came out in 2013. It's a great gift for anyone but particularly for your friend who is into expeditions, feminism, stories set in Australia, or camels (you learn so much about camels). There's also a very beautiful coffee table book filled with the National Geographic photos from Davidson's real trip that is on my own Christmas list this year.

Meagan's #5: Tiny Beautiful Things (2012) by Cheryl Strayed

I talked about my undying love for this essay collection in the author feature on Strayed that you can read here. I think this is an essential book for women. It would be an excellent gift for any female in your life whether they read a lot or not. I will also cheat and say that as an alternate 6th pick, Strayed's Brave Enough (2015) which you can also read about in the author spotlight, also makes an excellent token gift especially as just a 'something little' for those hard-to-shop-for people in your life.


Ok, I just gotta say I almost cried seeing that photo of Meg's dad Neil reading by the pool ... anyways here is my list! Also I hate Nicholas Sparks I have never read a book of his in my entire life. I will admit that I read all three Twilight books in like two weeks just to prove I am not lying. 

Meghan's #1: Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself (2010) by David Lipsky

I love David Foster Wallace so much but I also love jokes about how every guy owns an unread copy of Infinite Jest. Like I said in my review, this is the perfect book for people who are interested in Wallace but are too lazy to read any of his stuff. Get this book for the idiot male in your life so he can feel smarter. 

Meghan's #2: The Year of Magical Thinking (2005) by Joan Didion

Whenever I talk to anyone about Joan Didion I immediately suggest they read this book. The subject matter is sort of depressing considering it's the holiday season, but the holidays are also sort of depressing so the recipient will be glad to have the book. A weird selling point I am obsessed with is that Michelle Williams said this book helped her get over Heath Ledger's death. It helps you cope with any kind of loss really. For some reason I am inclined to suggest buying this for any female in your life, but also the world would be a much better place if more men were reading Didion.

Meghan's #3: Heroes of the Frontier (2016) by Dave Eggers

Are we allowed to recommend a book we haven't even read yet? I was going stir crazy waiting for this book to come out in paperback and also didn't want to wait until Christmas so I bought it myself. For $35.... It is expensive because it is brand new, but let me show you this line from a review by The Guardian, "Eggers paints a fine and sympathetic portrait of a life that is never quite unbearable, but never all that far off." Wow eh? Sign me uuuuuuuuup! (I also love anything that involves a cold climate and divorce).

Meghan's #4: Freedom (2010) by Jonathan Franzen

I just feel like this is one of those giant fiction books that everyone needs to have on their shelf? It is also incredible. Probably my second all-time favourite piece of fiction. I've convinced five people to read this book. It's incredibly popular though so I would suggest scoping out the recipient's bookshelf beforehand to make sure they don't already have it. 

Meghan's #5: In Cold Blood (1966) by Truman Capote

This is another one that a lot of people likely own but makes a good bookshelf staple. For some reason I am thinking this is a good gift for a dad? Like similar to a detective story but not lame? If I didn't own this book I would have love to receive it and Capote with Philip Seymour Hoffman too!

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