Saturday, December 12, 2015

Favorite Gift Books

When I received all of these books yesterday, I joked on Facebook that they were all presents from Santa.



Well, they weren't really from Santa. But, I do appreciate the books from publishers, authors, and agents. Over the years, I've received wonderful gifts from authors who are also friends. I've received thoughtful gifts of books from family, everything from my first adult book, Little Women, from my parents, to last year's gift of To Dance, To Dream from my sister.

I'm sure you've received gifts of books, too; thoughtful selections from people who knew you well. And, most of us would have a hard time selecting the one gift book that meant the most. And, who wants to offend one person who gave you a book by picking a different one?

So, let's turn that question upside down. What's the best book you ever gave anyone as a gift? What was your favorite?

I have an odd answer because the book probably doesn't mean as much to my sisters as it does to me. And, probably that's true of most of the books we give as gifts. They mean more to the gift giver. We often pick them because we love them.

Connie Willis' Miracle and Other Christmas Stories is my favorite collection of Christmas stories. I had copies of that book autographed for all three of us. It means a lot to me that we all have a copy.

I did get one other special gift book, but I was never able to give it. When Jim was dying of cancer, it was close to publication date for Lee Child's next Jack Reacher book. I thought we had time. I asked Lee Child's publicist for an advanced readers' copy so Jim could read it. She sent it, but he died before it arrived. I kept the book because of the memories.

Memories, family, love. There are a lot of reasons that one book might be the favorite one you ever gave as a gift.

Do you want to share?


11 comments:

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

My wife was a teacher and administrator for 34 years so she knows children's books, which has benefited our nieces and nephews. One she always gives little girls {when appropriate} is Judith Viorst's wonderful Earrings.

Lesa said...

I haven't read that book by Judith Viorst. I'm going to have to check it out, on your wife's recommendation, Jeff. When my nieces and nephews were young, all they received from me was books. And, I have on nephew who is thirty, and still messages me to ask about books. Success!

SandyG265 said...

Years ago I knew someone had borrowed my Mom's copy of The Tiger's Woman by Celeste De Blaisis and lost it. It was out of print but I happened to find a used copy in a bookstore. I remember when She opened it my Dad's reaction was "why did you give her a used book!" but my Mom knew it was out of print and was thrilled to get it.

Margie Bunting said...

There was a children's book called The Nine Questions by Edward Fenton (I think) that my friend Judy and I loved as children. It went out of print, and I took great pleasure in finding it when we were adults and sending it to her as a Christmas gift, even though we then lived on different coasts.

Lesa said...

Sandy and Margie, I totally get the joy of finding ht special out-of-print book, whether it's used or not? Wonderful gifts!

Leslie Budewitz said...

Years ago, when A Cup of Christmas Tea was new, my mother and I spotted the book in a bookstore, and loved it. "I wish I had an aunt to give it to," she said, as the book is about a gift to a beloved aunt, and in the same moment, we realized we did -- an elderly aunt of hers, who had terrified each of us as youngsters but whom we grew to love dearly. We bought the book, found a tea cup and a box of lovely tea bags -- the same Earl Grey that my grandmother, Aunt Tess's oldest sister, had drunk -- and sent it off to her. She was so delighted that she summoned all the elderly women in her apartment building for a Christmas tea.

Now she's years gone, and my mother is 90, but we still cherish that memory.

Anonymous said...

My sister gave me "Great Operatic Disasters", my all time favorite book, if such a thing is possible. I've given away at least a dozen copies! Vignettes from opera productions that leave you gasping for breath from ;aughter!

Kathleen Bylsma h5apby@yahoo.com

Jayne said...

I'd never heard of Connie Willis's Christmas collection although I read quite a few of her other books. Now ordering it. Thanks.

Lesa said...

Oh, Leslie! A Cup of Christmas Tea. I gave that to my grandmother, and when she died, I received it back. My mother bought me plates and cups to go with it. They're beautiful.

Lesa said...

Kathleen, I'm so glad you have a special book, and friends to share it with.

Lesa said...

Jayne, Let me know what you think of the story, "Inn". My favorite one in that book.