I love the festive season and I love all things bookish, so putting together a bookish Christmas gift guide seemed like the natural thing to do. I’ve included book recommendations to pass along to Santa for the young people in your life, pretty books for all ages that make great gifts, and some non-book suggestions that I think readers will love. So whether you’re looking for ideas for other people, things to add to your own wish list or you just want to treat yourself (‘tis the season after all), then take a look.
BOOKS FOR CHILDREN
Once Upon a Northern Night by Jean E. Pendziwol is a charming lullaby, beautifully illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault. The wonderful winter vibe and magical, heart-warming feel make it an ideal read for the festive season.
A Sky Full of Kindness by Rob Ryan is the story of two birds embarking on the greatest adventure of all: parenthood. It’s produced using stunning paper cut-outs, making it as appealing visually as it is plot wise.
The Christmasaurus by Tom Fletcher is one that’s on my own TBR for this month. It’s a children’s novel about a little boy named William, who embarks on some festive frolics with a dinosaur. Yep, a dinosaur. It looks lots of fun and from what I’ve heard, it’s as great a pick for those of us who are big kids at heart as it is for actual youngsters.
BOOKS FOR EVERYONE
Wild Animals of the North by Dieter Braun is perfect for lovers of nature, art or just pretty books in general. Braun has produced a series of wonderful geometric depictions of animals native to the northern hemisphere, accompanying each with some interesting facts about the species. I could happily frame every page from this book and hang it on my wall.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (illustrated edition) by J.K. Rowling has astoundingly beautiful art throughout by Jim Kay. The second book in the series was also released recently, and they are ideal for introducing the next generation to the magical wizarding world, as well as the perfect excuse for existing fans to delve back in with a whole new perspective.
The Fairy-Tale Princess by Wendy Jones and Su Blackwell is a series of retellings of classic fairy tales we all know and love. The real stars of the show however are the incredible paper sculptures crafted by Blackwell that illustrate the stories.
A Persephone subscription could make a great gift for the people in your life who already seem to have all the books! A great way to avoid gifting them a duplicate copy of something they already own and helping them find lesser-known titles that even the most avid bookworms aren’t likely to have encountered, Persephone are a London based publisher and bookshop who carry forgotten classics that had gone out of print, mostly by female authors. Their books are all published with a simple yet stylish grey cover with printed endpapers in a unique pattern that come with a matching bookmark. Their most popular titles are also available with full-colour artwork on the covers.
With a subscription, you can choose either 6 or 12 books to be delivered to the recipient, one each month. Alternatively, you can buy book tokens, valid for 1-3 books, so that they can choose the titles themselves, or one of 10 different gift boxes, which include 6 carefully curated titles each.
A Rialto subscription is a suggestion along the same vein as the previous one, only this time for the poetry lovers in your life. The Rialto is a tri-annual poetry magazine that includes work from respected and up-and-coming poets alike. As such, a subscription would entitle the recipient to their next 3 releases, sent out to them as and when they are published.
Bookish candles are great to burn whilst reading, or to simply display as fun keepsakes. There are loads out there, including scented ones that actually have that new book smell! As for me, I have a vanilla scented Alice in Wonderland one that I was given last year.
Bookish jewellery / trinkets can be found pretty easily online. You can get general bookish things, like earrings in the shape of books or pendants with quotes on them, but I like to find something that ties in with a person’s favourite book to give it that extra, personal touch. For example, last year I gifted my mum a necklace in the shape of a birdcage that comes mounted on a card with a relevant quote from Jane Eyre on it. (It’s still available here if you are interested.)
Bookish album artwork is a cool gift for people who love both books and music. There’s a brilliant Etsy shop that takes iconic albums and displays their track listings in the form of vintage Penguin books. For example, I have one that lists the tracks from Björk’s Debut, which is framed and displayed on my wall.
There we have it. Hopefully you’ve picked up an idea or two that you think the bookworms in your life might enjoy. Here’s to a lovely festive season for us all!