I’m the last of the BadGirlz blogging about the Holiday Season. We offered practical presents, a cute craft, encouragement, and even what NOT to get a writer. Everything I want is seemingly impractical or doesn’t even exist. Like Hermione Granger’s time-turner or a cloning machine or a microchip so I can find my way home after I go wandering, sleep-deprived and mumbling about conflict and dangling participles. Finding a personal chef or housekeeper or assistant under the tree would be awesome too.
Let me say up front, I am quite possibly the world’s worst gift giver. I struggle with birthdays, Christmas, anniversaries. I ask my husband what he wants and he tells me I should have been paying attention to all the hints he’s been dropping (like a woman). I stare at him blankly (like a man). He shakes his head and says with a fair amount of dismay, “You are a romance writer?!”
If it were up to me, I would give books to everyone (In the ultimate irony, my husband doesn’t read, by the way). So, instead of offering suggestions on what a writer wants, I’m going to throw out some suggestions on books you can gift. I’ve read and can personally vouch for all of these picks. Perhaps, you’ll even find a book to gift to yourself this holiday season!
- For the preschoolers and toddlers in your life: If your kids/grandkids/nephews/nieces haven’t discovered PETE THE CAT by Eric Litwin and James Dean, then be their hero and introduce them to the coolest cat on the planet who teaches kids that “no matter what you step in, just keep walking along and singing your song.” That’s a lesson even adults can benefit from.
- Lower Elementary Age Kids: I SURVIVED series by Lauren Tarshis. Each book in this series takes place during an epic historical event. The latest was The Destruction of Pompeii. She also writes about Pearl Harbor and Gettysburg among other events. The books teach history in an engaging, exciting way.
- Upper Elementary Age Kids: WONDER by RJ Palacio. A beautiful story that teaches kids about acceptance. My son’s 5th grade class read this, and he loved it so much he insisted I read it as well. It was awesome.
- High School: RUNNING DREAM by Wendelin Van Draanen. An inspiring tale about a high school track star who loses a leg in a school bus accident.
- Sweet Romance: ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell. I haven’t read Eleanor and Park yet, but it’s on my list. This book is set around Y2K and a techhead who is tasked with flagging inappropriate emails at a newspaper. It’s cute and different.
- Sexy Romance: MOTORCYCLE MAN by Kristen Ashley. Someone tweeted about this book, and I was intrigued enough to check it out. Loved it. Very hot with two great main characters set around a motorcycle club.
- Super-sexy Romance: OBSESSION by Liliana Lee. A trilogy of serial novellas set in historical China. Fast-paced and entertaining.
- Heart-Rending Romance: ME BEFORE YOU by Jojo Moyes. I’m not a crier normally, but man, this book got me good. It made for a great book club book. Lots of controversial topics for discussion.
- Dog Lovers: THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN by Garth Stein. The life of an aspiring race car driver told from the point of view of his beloved dog. I read this book in one sitting.
- Serious Literature Lovers: CUTTING FOR STONE by Abraham Verghese. I opened this book ready to trudge through it. (It was a book club pick). I could not put it down…loved it!! Forget everything you know about Ethiopia. I pictured a desert wasteland with starving children (Thanks Bob Geldof and Do They Know It’s Christmas?). This book shattered all my preconceptions.
- Unexplored History Lovers: THE ORPHAN TRAIN by Christina Baker Kline. I could not believe this book was based on real events in the early 1900s America. Blew my mind. While there were a couple of plot points that had me scratching my head, overall the fascinating history made up for it.
- Mystery Lovers: THE THIRTEENTH TALE by Diana Setterfield. This is a twisty, dark gothic. If you like to be surprised at an ending, check it out.
What are some books you’ve read this year that are worth gifting?