A Handy Dandy Book Gift Guide

December 7th, 2011 by

christmas-presentI have a small family — it’s just me and my parents, no siblings — so you’d think Christmas shopping would be easy. BUT NO.

My mom is the kind of person who will get whatever she wants for herself throughout the year — and on top of that, she’s picky. My dad, on the other hand, is a bit of a cheapskate; once I got him some CDs for Christmas, and he told me that in the future I should check first to see if he could get them from the library and not spend my money on CDs that were available that way!

But here’s a little secret: If you’re having trouble with your Christmas or Hanukkah shopping this year, there’s one gift that everyone loves… FOOD! But also, most people appreciate getting books chosen just for them.

So here are some ideas for picking the perfect present for every person on your list — and they’re all books published this year!

the-only-ones-aaron-starmerDystopian drama: Have a friend who’s dying to read The Hunger Games but their parents say they’re not allowed? If they’re 10 or older, give them The Only Ones by Aaron Starmer, about a world where everyone disappears except a small group of kids.
peter-nimble-emerald-atlasFantasy favorites: As a Harry Potter fanatic, I know nothing can fill the void left when that series ended. But there are definitely some awesome new fantasy books out there to enjoy! Two of my favorites are Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes by Jonathan Auxier and The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens.

When-Life-Gives-You-OJFriendly fiction: For the girl who likes realistic fiction with heart, I recommend When Life Gives You O.J. by Erica Perl. It’s got everything — family issues, friend questions, bully trouble, and pets!

Hugo-Movie-CompanionFilm fanatics:
Got a friend who loves going to the movies? After you see Hugo, gift your friend The Hugo Movie Companion and get the inside scoop on how they adapted Brian Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret for the silver screen. (Of course, you should also get your friend the original book too! I’m just putting it in parentheses because it didn’t come out in 2011 like the rest of the books.)

darth-paper-strikes-backHa ha hilarious: If your bud likes funny books, you can’t lose with Darth Paper Strikes Back by Tom Angleberger, the sequel to The Strange Case of Origami Yoda. It’s got humor, squiggly illustrations, and Star Wars finger puppets!

Also, if you have a friend who doesn’t fit any of the categories above, then I’d still go with Darth Paper (and Origami Yoda) — they’re guaranteed crowd pleasers! Anyone and everyone loves these books! Except the Empire.

And now I want to hear from YOU. Leave me a comment and tell me: what’s on your wishlist this year? I want Crumbs by Anne Ursu, Wildwood by Colin Meloy, and a DVD player (my old one broke).

— Karen

The most used Christmas present Karen ever got was from Nancy: a container for easily transporting homemade baked goods, with built-in holes for keeping cupcakes upright!

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