As a consummate consumer of literature, I can imagine no better gift than a book hand-chosen for me by someone who knows me best. Read on for your holiday gifting guide for reads that will cover all of the most important people in your life.
For Mom – The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
It’s rare that you read a novel that falls into the “feel good” category without being easily dismissed as a light read. This incredible story is told from the perspective of the family dog, and seems to encompass the full spectrum of life’s varied emotions. I laughed, I cried, and I read it again. Your mother will adore this book.
For Dad – The Vineyard at the End of the World by Ian Mount
No wine lover’s knowledge is complete without learning about the advent of the wine culture in South America. From the personal stories of the people involved, this saga focuses on Malbec’s humble beginnings in Argentina and then not-so-humble leap onto the wine world’s main stage. Bonus gift: get Dad a bottle of Malbec for the holiday table as well.
For Sister – Swing Time by Zadie Smith
I don’t know if another book has received more buzz around its release this year, but this one is worth the hype. If anyone read White Teeth, they are familiar with Zadie Smith’s character-driven style and authentic voice, which makes this story a win as well.
For Brother – Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow
In lieu of tickets to the play itself, this incredibly immersive biography is the perfect gift for a history-loving sibling. It also doesn’t hurt that this is the book that inspired Lin-Manual Miranda to dream up his now infamous piece of theater.
For Hubby – The Holy or the Broken by Alan Light
In light of the unfortunate passing of music legend Leonard Cohen this year, best known for writing and performing the timeless hit “Hallelujah,” I’m gifting the story behind the song. This nonfiction tale traces the origins of this song from its original creator, Cohen, through its breakthrough into popular culture and the minds and hearts of generations.
For Best Friend – Encyclopedia of the Exquisite by Jessica Kerwin Jenkins
Part beautiful coffee table book, part playful read, this charming book is wholly devoted to finding articles of beauty scattered across genres. The illustrations are equally delightful and provide the perfect counterpart to the clever anecdotes that accompany each “exquisite” item.
For Myself – The Book of Unknown Americans by Cristina Henriquez
And for myself, I am hoping to find this incredible story by Cristina Henriquez under the tree. It illuminates the immigrant experience in America through (what looks like) some incredibly poignant characters, and I don’t think there has ever been a better time to read a work like this.