Suzanne Tobias

Make this holiday one for the books: Here are 19 gift ideas for avid readers

Book nerds can display their favorite book cover or character with a lapel pin from Ideal Bookshelf, Out of Print or Chronicle Books.
Book nerds can display their favorite book cover or character with a lapel pin from Ideal Bookshelf, Out of Print or Chronicle Books. The Wichita Eagle

Shopping for a book lover?

You’re in luck, because we’re amazingly easy to please. Give us a new book and a few hours peace – and oh, all right, maybe a glass of Cabernet or cup of hot tea – and we’re in heaven.

This year, if you want to go beyond the obvious (bookstore gift card) or predictable (the book at the top of her Amazon wish list), here are some gifts in various price ranges that would delight any devoted reader. Most are available at Watermark Books & Cafe, 4701 E. Douglas:

1. A cloth-bound classic, $24 – A beautiful, hardcover edition of your loved one’s favorite book is always a welcome gift. Consider one of the Penguin Clothbound Classics, which include Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” and Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.”

2. Literary temporary tattoos, $12.95 – A fun way for bibliophiles to get inked in a non-permanent way.

3. Book-cover matchboxes, $2.99 – Conveniently located near the register at Watermark is a collection of matchboxes that look like vintage book covers. At about $3 each, they’re super cute (especially the “Stuart Little” one!) and make great stocking-stuffers.

4. A book subscription service, $15 and up – Book mail is the best mail. If you’d like to keep surprising the book lover in your life for months to come, consider a book subscription service. Book of the Month is a classic, of course, but there are a number of other options, including Page Habit, Lit-Cube, OwlCrate and Book Bath Box.

5. Personal library kit, $16.99 – For a book lover, there’s no greater pleasure than sharing beloved books. This kit, which includes old-fashioned library checkout cards, self-adhesive pockets, a date stamp and ink pad, lets bibliophiles be generous and keep track of their collection.

6. Cloisonne lapel pins, $10 and up – Book nerds can display their favorite book cover or character – including George Orwell’s “1984” or the costumed Max from “Where the Wild Things Are” – with a lapel pin from Ideal Bookshelf, Out of Print or Chronicle Books.

7. A graphic novel or comic collection – If you’re shopping for a bibliophile, don’t overlook the graphic novel section of the bookstore. These days, a graphic novel can feature superheroes, villains, love stories, classic works or illustrated histories of American presidents.

8. A literary scarf, $34.99 – Books become high fashion with Out of Print’s collection of book-themed scarves. Watermark carries several patterns, including ones with library stamps, typewriters, banned books and “Edgar Allen Poe-ka Dots.”

9. “Remarkable Books: The World’s Most Beautiful and Historic Works,” $30 – This coffee-table book about books features ancient masterpieces such as “The Art of War” and the stunningly illustrated “Birds of America.” Alongside images of the books or manuscripts themselves are mini-biographies of the people who produced them.

10. “Rooster Bar,” by John Grisham (signed edition), $28.95 – If you weren’t able to attend the sold-out appearance by John Grisham in Wichita last month, you can still pick up an autographed copy of his latest novel, “The Rooster Bar,” at Watermark Books.

11. William Shakespeare air freshener, $3.99 – Here’s a silly little stocking-stuffer for the person who loves classic literature – in “Shakespearmint” scent, of course.

12. Shakespeare box set (miniature edition), $13.95 – This adorable collection for fans of the Bard includes three mini-classics: “Shakespeare: The Bard’s Guide to Abuses and Affronts,” “William Shakespeare: The Complete Plays in One Sitting,” and “Love Sonnets of Shakespeare.”

13. “A Book That Takes Its Time: An Unhurried Adventure in Creative Mindfulness,” $27.50 – This stunning interactive volume from the editors of Flow magazine is a celebration of creativity, mindfulness and all things paper. Scrapbookers and stationery lovers will adore the detachable journals, stickers, posters and inspiring quotes.

14. “The Moth Presents All These Wonders: True Stories about Facing the Unknown,” $25 – Creative minds at The Moth, a nonprofit group dedicated to the art and craft of storytelling, compiled this collection of 45 unforgettable true stories about risk, courage and facing the unknown. Any fan of “The Moth Radio Hour” or the weekly podcast – or storytelling in general – would enjoy this bound volume.

15. “Harry Potter” illustrated editions, $39.99 – The new illustrated editions of J.K. Rowling’s books are masterpieces and a perfect addition to any fan’s library. Award-winning illustrator Jim Kay brings the beloved tales to life with more than 100 illustrations per book. The first three books in the series have been released so far – “Harry Potter and the Prizoner of Azkaban” came out in October – with more to come.

16. “My Life with Bob,” by Pamela Paul, $27 – Pamela Paul, editor of The New York Times Book Review, has kept a record of every book she’s read over the past 28 years – a collection she calls Bob (her Book of Books). In this delightful collection, Paul shares the stories that have shaped her life and reflects on the special relationship between books and their readers.

17. “The Best American Non-Required Reading 2017,” $15.99 – This category-defying annual anthology is a collection of interesting fiction, nonfiction, poetry, comics and other gems. Great for anyone who loves to read.

18. Pocket editions of modern classics, $16 – The latest series of Picador Modern Classics includes Joan Didion’s “Slouching Towards Bethlehem” and Barbara Ehrenreich’s “Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America.” Each volume features a striking portrait of the author on the cover.

19. Weighted bookmark, about $10 – This nifty little device holds pages in place when your hands are otherwise occupied, making it perfect for propping open cookbooks in the kitchen or for reading outside on a breezy day. Rubber ones are non-slip, waterproof and washable; more expensive leather varieties can be monogrammed or otherwise personalized. Another great stocking stuffer for avid readers.

Suzanne Perez Tobias: 316-268-6567, @suzannetobias

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