If you have a book lover in your life, an ordinary sweater or video game won’t work as a gift. Instead, give them a present that says, “I know how much you love reading — this will make it better!”
Even if you have no idea who their favorite author is or whether they’ve already read ___ book, these gifts feel personal because a book lover is emotionally connected to the act of reading. Having you acknowledge that means you’re a keeper.
Pair all below gifts with an hour of quiet alone time (without the TV on) so they can dig into their latest novel.
Out of Print has the all-time best assortment of book-inspired T-shirts, the end. Classic literature and formative reads ranging from Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea and Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men to Everyone Poops, Le Petit Prince, and Clifford the Big Red Dog can all be repped. What’s better is the shirts are ultra comfortable and the title graphics are a stylish blend between vintage and modern — because bibliophiles love to wear their favorite novels.
The perfect reading light can only be achieved by a directional lamp that shines light only on the pages in your lap while keeping the rest of the room dim. However, a directional light should emit an ambient glow instead of a blinding spotlight. Crate & Barrel blended directional and ambient light in the Dexter Arc Floor Lamp, which we can honestly say makes the act of reading more cozy, engulfing, and therefore enjoyable. The brand calls the sine “a halo of warmth,” which is achieved by the floating diffuser. The textured white drum shade hangs ripe from a steel base and retractable pole.
Much like a superhero’s cape completes his or her transformation, reading glasses put book lovers into the mindset of a long read. Instead of a cheap, plastic pair of reading glasses, get your book bae a solid metal Square Optical Frame from Tom Ford. The stylish design features a matte black outer and rose gold inner, all made in Italy, of course. Tip: Here’s how to remove any scratches that accrue on this sexy pair of Tom Fords.
Every real book lover has a spot in the house where they retire to read. If yours doesn’t, get them a reading daybed like this handsome blue velvet sofa from Article. The Sven Daybed was reimagined from Article’s most popular couch, so you know it’s gonna be comfortable. The mid-century lines and tufted seat makes a reader feel like they’re hanging out at Gertrude Stein’s Parisian apartment. The Sven is supported by a mahogany wood-stained structure and takes about five minutes to assemble for 5,000-plus hours of reading.
Tickets to an Author Event
Author Talk/Reading – $0-$150
Book lovers spend most of their time in solitude, so plan to take them out for an evening they’ll think is worth leaving the next chapter for. Research local writing workshop houses, bookstores, libraries, or theater venues for visiting author talks. These can range anywhere in cost from free to about $150, depending on the caliber of the author. If there’s a writer your giftee is particularly fond of, find their next signing or author talk and make a cross-country trip out of it! (Complete with bookstore visits and coffee shop reading time.)
Someone who really, really loves to read will put his or her current book through hell, taking it traveling, to the pool, the gym, and everywhere in between. That book will get trashed, possibly waterlogged, or worse. This dapper, hand-made leather book case from Etsy’s TreibholzDesigns is the best, most suave way to keep that book looking brand-new. The size is adjustable to fit a range of novels and was hand sewn in Canada. Make sure to add a custom name or initials to the front. When your book lover hesitantly asks, “Is it for an iPad?” say, “Hell no, books only.”
The perfect reading chair is a delicate balance between support and relaxation. In other words, the perfect reading chair is the Brasilia Chaise (yep, it’s about $4,000, but you’re paying for perfection). Coming in nearly 40 different colorways, the unique curving form of the Brasilia positions the reader at the optimal active lounging spot. Hand-tufted fabric rests on solid walnut legs, all made domestically in California. If lazy-ass football fanatics get extravagant loungers, so should book lovers!
Makeover an entire wall or quaint corner with minimalist bamboo shelving to fit all your book worm’s novels. The Svalnas Series by Ikea is a collection of wall-mounted shelf combinations that can be as compact or expanded as you need. Although the look is light and airy, these bamboo shelves can carry some serious weight (which anyone who owns a collection of books knows is essential). To plan this surprise, check how many books your book lover has, buy shelving (both open and closed storage), assemble, and color or genre-code the books. Wrap a few new books and add them to the shelf to put presents on your present. Congratulations, you just won the holidays.
Reading a book in the bath is rivaled only to smoking a cigar in Havana. The former is more coveted by book lovers who can keep their pages from getting soggy thanks to your gift of the Eshleman Bathtub Caddy from Wayfair, which also includes a spot for wine, glasses, phone, and soap (this can also be used for a glass of whiskey). Adjustable arms tailor to different tub sizes and to keep the book in place there’s both a front and back support. Go ahead, get pruny.
OK, expert-level gift time. If you’ve been gifting to a book lover for years, odds are they have all the above. It’s also likely that you know exactly which authors and books are their most cherished. Shop around online at Peter Harrington for a first edition or “princeps,” which can set you back anywhere from $700-$30,000-plus. This first-edition James Bond novel by Ian Fleming is one that comes to mind. Sure, it may be ink and pages to you, but a first edition is like getting Aaron Judge’s autograph on a home-run ball that won the game. If you need the first edition to really impress, look for a signed copy (always most expensive) like this edition of Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald, inscribed with a note to his lover Margaret Case Harriman. As a book lover myself, I am cringing with pleasure at the image of owning a signed copy of my favorite book.