Favored books to give

What I particularly like about this gift is that the books are readable, not coffee table books or the latest book about politics, or even a popular memoir. These are all books that the givers obviously loved and want to share. Irresistible.


18 Books Readers Love to Gift

By Alyssa Hollingsworth•Updated: December 3, 2020•5 min read

With the world of books out there, it can sometimes be hard to narrow the gift-giving field. That’s why we asked our readers what titles they’ll be passing on this season. Have a look at their great recommendations — from board books to classics — and get inspiration for those last-minute gifts in your life. Note: Responses have been edited for length and clarity.

Book cover for Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury

Dandelion WineRay Bradbury

Suzanne says: “Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury is my bible. It’s a simple, profoundly touching story of a boy in a small town discovering what it truly means to be alive. I buy up all the copies at used bookstores and leave them on buses and trains, in waiting rooms and on benches.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson

Furiously HappyJenny Lawson

Rachel says: “I have given away over 15 copies to date. It’s a fantastic, laugh-out-loud book that will make everyone feel better about life struggles.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

When Breath Becomes AirPaul Kalanithi

Kiernan says: “One of my favorite books, it serves as a great jumping off point into autobiographies and philosophical books.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

The AlchemistPaulo Coelho

Nat says: “I love to give The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. It’s such a great small little story with such a huge meaning.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Peace Like a River by Leif Enger

Peace Like a RiverLeif Enger

Joel says: “I buy every copy in every thrift store of Peace Like a River by Leif Enger. Such beautiful writing, a poignant story dealing with the law and justice versus mercy, and a setting that will stick with you for a long time. I’ve given this to everyone I know and then some.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Love for Imperfect Things by Haemin Sunim

Love for Imperfect ThingsHaemin Sunim

Rosemary says: “Anything by Haemin Sunim.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Ignore Everybody by Hugh MacLeod

Ignore EverybodyHugh MacLeod

Carolyn says: “My favorite gift to young people, especially new graduates, is Hugh MacLeod’s Ignore Everybody. Not just for artists but for anybody whose future depends on creative thinking.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris

Me Talk Pretty One DayDavid Sedaris

Deborah says: “I’ve gifted at least a half-dozen copies because this is one of the funniest books I’ve read, and I just adore sharing humor with others.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

Jane EyreCharlotte Brontë

Linda says: “Jane Eyre, the first adult classic book I ever read. I have read it approximately once a year ever since. I hope the recipient will love it as much as I do.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Samurai’s Garden by Gail Tsukiyama

The Samurai’s GardenGail Tsukiyama

Carrie says: “It is a well written, gentle book that shows loyalty, sympathy, and compassion.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Being Mortal by Atul Gawande

Being MortalAtul Gawande

Francis says: “I’m psyched to give Being Mortal by Atul Gawande this Christmas. It’s a powerful book about how health care deals with dying that makes readers more appreciative of life right now. Is it kind of weird to give a book about death for Christmas? Yes. But it’s really good so I’m making an exception.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Red Address Book by Sofia Lundberg

The Red Address BookSofia Lundberg

Louisa says: “I have not gifted it yet, but I’ve just finished reading The Red Address Book by Sofia Lundberg and I know that it’s a book I will gift to many friends!”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron

I Feel Bad About My NeckNora Ephron

Patti says: “I love giving I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron for a milestone birthday: 50 or 60. It is a light-hearted view on aging and helps the reader to appreciate the gift of getting older. It certainly is better than the alternative.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis

The Screwtape LettersC. S. Lewis

Kate says: “My favorite book of all time is The Screwtape Lettersby C. S. Lewis. I first read it 70 years ago when I was in my mid-teens and its message has stayed with me throughout all the years since.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz, Janet Mills

The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal FreedomDon Miguel Ruiz and Janet Mills

Marie says: “I’ve given out at least a dozen and everyone loves the ideas and thinking in this enlightening book.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night CircusErin Morgenstern

Sarah says: “For adults: The Night Circus. It’s engaging, beautifully, masterfully detailed and written. It’s a book that stays with you long after you’re done.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for Creek Mary’s Blood by Dee Brown

Creek Mary’s BloodDee Brown

Kate says: “My mom gave me Creek Mary’s Blood. It’s the best book I’ve ever received and the story will stay with me forever!”View Price…Save to Wishlist

Book cover for The Book of Joy by Dalai Lama XIV, Desmond Tutu, Douglas Carlton Abrams

The Book of JoyDalai Lama XIVDesmond Tutu, and Douglas Carlton Abrams

Cindy says: “Two unique people sharing their views and how easy it is to love one another even though everyone is different.”View Price…Save to Wishlist

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