Sunday, November 29, 2009

'Tis Book Season

Once again, I plan to give books to everyone on my Christmas list. Lots of rectangular-shaped packages shall sit under the tree. What can it be? Why, it's a book!

I did the same thing last year and hey! turns out a book is kind of a personal item, and choosing the right one isn't so easy. Mistakes were made, let's just say.

Wouldn't it be great if Barnes & Noble had a matchmaking service for book gifts? Like an eHarmony device? That way, you won't accidently send Chuck Palahniuk's latest novel to your Aunt Sophia who lives in a convent.

Until then, you'll just have to settle for my low-tech version and hope you have a few characters like these in your family.

For the Stylish Big Sister Who Watches HBO's True Blood and Wears Sexy Shoes:
Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler
Soulless by Gail Carriger

...and her teenage Twihard daughter:
The Evernight Series by Claudia Gray
Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

For the Uncle Who Volunteers at the Humane Society:
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski
Merle's Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote

For the Workaholic, BlackBerry-Loving Husband: (this one is real)
The Return of Depression Economics by Paul Krugman
The Myth of the Rational Market by Justin Fox
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

For the Peacenik Younger Brother Getting His MA at Berkeley:
Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer
Living Off the Grid: A Simple Guide to Creating and Maintaining Energy, Water, Shelter, and More by Dave Black
The Fight for Peace: A History of Anti-War Movements in America by Ted Gottfried
A subscription to McSweeneys

For the History-Buff Sister-in-Law with the Heavy Damask Curtains in her Living Room:
Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters
Katherine by Anya Seton

For the Neighbor You Never See Because She Has a Hellish Commute:
Audiobooks, of course. I'd listen to Stories by Garrison Keillor. Love him.*

For the Mom Who Won't Allow Anyone to Leave the Table Without Eating Seconds:
The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten
Julie and Julia by Julie Powell
Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child (She's probably lost it by now. Get her another copy.)

For the Dad Who Whoops It Up Every Thursday Night with his Masonic Brethren:
The new Dan Brown, naturally!
In Pursuit of Honor by Vince Flynn

For the Hard-to-Buy-For, Ph.D.-Toting Mother-in-Law:
The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk
Say You're One of Them by Uwem Akpan
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro
This Earth of Mankind by Pramoedya Ananta Toer

For the Southern Belle Cousin in a Book Club: (I have lots of these)
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
The Gurnsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Schaffer and Annie Barrows
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
Whistlin' Dixie in a Nor'easter by Lisa Patton

See? There's something for everyone! Even the Right-Leaning, Conservative Brother-in-Law:
The Reagan Diaries by Ronald Reagan

What would be on your Christmas/Hanukkah/Solstice/Whatever list?

*Uh, hmmm. Maybe not as much after reading this.


Anonymous said...

I haven't seen anyone with such a long list of books to be gifted. I take a lesson. :))

Melanie Hooyenga said...

This is a great list!

For the the butt-kicking, independent woman in your life:

Three Days to Dead, by Kelly Meding :)

moonrat said...

ha. awesome. you know i have one of these, too ;)

WendyCinNYC said...

Kulpreet--I'm going to be busy online tomorrow. Thanks for stopping by!

Melanie--Good addition!

Moonrat--Let me guess...the mom? (I know I'll be fasting for the next few days to get rid of my Thanksgiving extra. I'll lose it just in time for the Christmas food extravaganza.)

colbymarshall said...

May I also recommend for Uncle who volunteers for Humane Society- BLISS TO YOU by Trixie Koontz
Written from the perspective of Dean Koontz' beloved (now dearly departed dog), all the proceeds of this book's sales go to Canine Companions for Independence, the service dog organization I train for ;-)

WendyCinNYC said...

Thanks, Colby! That sounds perfect.

Janna Leadbetter said...

Very good! You put some thought into this list, thanks. And one can't go wrong with the idea of books.

I've been known to give children's books at baby showers, too, and I recently decided that will likely become my "thing" to do. No more onesies that will see too many upchucks in one week, or stuffed animals the dog will obliterate before Junior can play with it. Books.

WendyCinNYC said...

Thanks, Janna. I've actually read a lot of these, but not all. I like your idea of books for baby showers. NO ONE needs more stuffed animals.

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

I'm giving Carol, at my vet's office, a B & N gift card. She gave my dog and cat baths. She didn't charge me for the cat and wouldn't take a tip. I figure everyone likes a book, but I don't want to make that ultimate decision of what book to buy an almost perfect stranger.