Tricky! When my friends want a book, they don’t usually shilly-shally around long enough for me to a) find out what book, and b) buy it for them. The readers in my life go out and get the books they want for themselves, and the non-readers make their preferences tactfully* known.
*(Not books, Janet! I mean it! Anything but a book!)
- I love finding just the right journal for someone. The cover art, the binding, the number of pages, the paper colour, the lines (or not) – some things have to be just right for the person, and it is oh so satisfying when that happens.
- Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho. Let’s be honest, everyone who has read it will continue to rave about Zacharias and Prunella and Mak Genggang for a long time, possibly forever, and the tantalizing promise of a sequel being released sometime in 2017 has us weak at the knees.
- Anything by Diana Wynne Jones, because if my friends are reading DWJ’s books they must be cool with my goofiness and my total obsession with her writing.
Since I am not sure what kind of books people really like, I give them things that I enjoyed and hope they do too. Here are some titles I often give:
- The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
If the person likes lit fic, they’ll love this. If they are a romantic, they’ll love this. If they like poetry, they’ll love this.
- Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
Some books are important enough that you give them to people in the hopes they read them.
- A Short History of Nearly Everything – Bill Bryson
I mean, people are going to be interested in something. Right?
- Einstein’s Dreams – Alan Lightman
- Alif the Unseen – G. Willow Wilson
- The Heart and the Bottle – Oliver Jeffers
I tend to gift picturebooks a lot. You can hardly go wrong with them.
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
As I said, some books are important like that.
- The Arrival by Shaun Tan
This book has become twice as important in the recent months.