Five Books to Gift Your Friends Or Yourself This Holiday Season

Faber & Faber

Books as gifts are a tried and true recipe for success: it’s a wonderful experience to hold a book in your hands and an even greater adventure to read it.

This season it’s going to be hard to see family and friends and even more difficult to get people gifts they’ll love. Books can be a simple solution to this difficult time, a perfect escape, and something that can be used over and over again. The challenge is finding the right book for the right reader which is what this list is for. Based on your intended reader, see if you can find the right gift for that special person in your life, yourself included!

For the Lover of YA Fiction: Any book written by Sarah J. Maas

While love for the YA genre might have declined due to Divergent and The Hunger Games, Maas has restored the faith of thousands of fans through her multiple series. The Throne of Glass series takes on a female assassin in a mystical land of monsters, kings, and evil. A Court of Thorns and Roses is an inspired take on Beauty and the Beast with much more ~flavor~ thrown in. Lastly, Maas just release her latest series, Crescent City, about a half-human half-face on the run from the law because she was framed for a crime she didn’t commit. 

For the TV/Movie Lover: Normal People, Sally Rooney

This year Hulu related its live-action version of the book that took the world by storm in 2018—which is exactly why you should read it now. This novel takes you through the trials and tribulations of Connell and Marianne,  two young adults who grew up in Ireland and find solace in each other. Their love is complicated and heartbreakingly real. The TV show launched the careers of its two lead actors, earned an Emmy nomination, and was talked-about for the steamiest scenes on TV at the time. A must-read for anyone who loved or wants to watch the show. 

For the Activist or Lover of Current Events:  Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates

During the height of the Black Lives Matter Protest, advocacy to read books by Black authors skyrocketed. Google a simple list on the topic and this book is guaranteed to be on it as Ta-Nehisi Coates has become the author of the moment and the movement. Like any writer, Coates works through his experiences and questions about race in America through his work. With so much positive feedback and reviews, this book is a must for anyone who wants to dig deeper into the personal Black experience to solve the existential problem of racism.

For the Lover of Greek Mythology: The Song of Achilles, Madeline Miller

We may have been forced to read The Odyssey in high school but we willingly chose to read Percy Jackson for fun. Madeline Miller crafted The Song of Achilles as a retelling of The Illiad whose events led to The Odyssey. This is not the same snooze-fest that we had in high school— this novel is being remarked as one of the best works of its time for the subject matter both by critics and readers like you. The takeaway for this book is that while the love story between two men is epic, it may not be a happy ending if you remember your history lessons. 

For The Lover of Glitz, Glam, and Gossip: Sex and Vanity by Kevin Kwan

Kevin Kwan is at it again. He started with Crazy Rich Asians which led to two more books to complete the series: China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems. Kwan’s latest novel Sex and Vanity tells the story of Lucie Churchill, a Chinese-American who is ready to marry her fiancé until she meets an old flame that her family disapproved of. All of this takes place in the most luxurious places Kwan knows, as his penchants for wealth and intrigue made him famous from the start. Perfect for anyone who misses travel, drama, and forbidden love admit the pandemic. 

Hopefully, this list helped you pick something for a friend or inspired you to try something new while you’re relaxing by a warm fire with fuzzy socks and a mug of hot cocoa in hand.