There are few things I love more than a good book. Receiving a great book as a gift is definitely on the top of my list – it’s thoughtful, and when it’s a book the gifter themselves truly loves, it’s a little piece of them that they are gifting to you.
A good book doesn’t have to mean the next best novel, a good book is recognizing that it is one you know the recipient will love. Also, not for nothing, but it’s a great last minute gift, either with Amazon Prime or running out to your local bookstore.
Here are our top picks for the best books to gift this holiday season, in no particular order:
I Am Malala, Malala Yousafzai
This is a book everyone should read! I will admit, it did make me feel like a complete underachiever who really needs to figure out what mark she will ever leave on the world.
Malala is a young woman from the Swat Valley in Pakistan. She attended school, which the Taliban believes women should not be able to do, and was shot – in the face – by a Taliban fighter. Malala has since won the Nobel Prize and continues to fight for women’s rights to education.
The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead
Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2017 and has been a New York Times bestseller this year. The novel depicts a young slave’s adventure escaping slavery in the south. Not having read the novel yet, I couldn’t do it justice and highly recommend reading the description and reviews. It sounds like a book that will enrapture you with heartbreak and suck you in from the first page.
Shoe Dog, Phil Knight
With $50, Knight started a company that would become one of the biggest companies in the world. The memoir is a riveting account of how Knight started Nike and became an iconic brand.
The Drunken Botanist, Amy Stewart & Colleen Marlow
The perfect gift for your friend who loves to entertain-make cocktails-learn about food-and garden. You know, that friend. Stewart and Marlow’s book talks about the plants that make some of the most famous cocktails, recipes for cocktails and growing tips for gardeners. I think I need this!
Today Will be Different, Maria Semple
Semple’s second novel, Today Will be Different, is about reinvention and facing up to your former self to really start living. The novel got all. the. accolades. in 2016 – if your recipient hasn’t read it yet, it’s a great gift! I highly recommend Semple’s first novel, Where’d You Go Bernadette?, too!
The House that Pinterest Built, Diane Keaton
Yes, even Diane Keaton uses Pinterest to decorate. A style manual, inspiration guide and I mean, just a great book from Diane Keaton that every woman needs, that makes a great gift.
Also, Diane Keaton really uses Pinterest and you can follow her right here.
The Paper Time Machine, Wolfgang Wild and Jordan Lloyd
This coffee table book is my favorite gift this season! The Paper Time Machine takes old black and white photos and puts color to them. The images really come to life in a totally new way – we have this on our own coffee table now and I love to pick it up and reimagine the past in an actually very colorful way!
Ali A Life, Jonathan Eig
A definitive biography on Muhammad Ali by a best-selling author with incredible access to Ali’s circle. This is the first complete (unauthorized) biography of its kind, and uses over 500 interviews, FBI files, Justice Department files and never before heard audio interviews from the 1960s.
We Should All be Feminists, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Adichie’s essay, adapted from this famous TEDx that you must watch, gives a perspective on feminism for the 21st century.
The Sun and Her Flowers, Rupi Kaur
Kaur’s second book of poerty talks about growth, healing and honoring your family’s ancestry. Perfect for the poetry lover in your life!
F in Exams, The Very Best Totally Wrong Text Answers, Richard Benson
We all love those memes of funny test answers. Gift all that funny in one book!
Fifty Dresses That Changed the World, Design Museum
This amazing collection from the Design Museum talks about what gave these 50 garments their iconic status that changed society. The book features Audrey Hepburn, Jackie Kennedy, Princess Diana and more.
All in Good Taste, Kate Spade New York
I love everything Kate Spade stands for, like drinking champagne and dancing on tables, eating off the fine china, because seriously life is too short. This entertaining guide is perfect for the hostess with the mostest in your life!