9 December 2016

Christmas Gift Guide: For Book Lovers (Part 1)

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Welcome to the first of my Christmas Gift Guides 2016!

Okay, so I'm a little late to the gift guide party but I can't think of a time when I'm ever been on schedule, so it's just one of those things! Hopefully you are still Christmas shopping or at least dropping hints as to what you'd like to see under the tree this year.

As you can see I'm starting off not with beauty but with books! Because basically I forgot how much work gift guides are to put together and my huge beauty and skincare guides aren't ready just yet - psssst they are coming next week I promise! However I knew this year I wanted to create a gift guide for book lovers because I can't get enough of them and Christmas is the perfect time to receive a stack of new books to enjoy over the festive period and to see you through Winter. Below I have a huge range of ideas that I really hope helps a few of you in the gifting department or just gives you ideas on what to treat yourself to at the very least!

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Extra special books for the serious book lover in your life 
If you have a friend or family member that has bookshelves full of books and is known for being a book worm then an extra special book may make for the perfect gift for them. Below are a range of special edition books, how you can pick up signed books and a few charitable choices.

Puffin in Bloom, Illustrated by Anna Bond
One of my favourite special edition ranges of recent years has to be the Puffin in Bloom books that are wonderfully illustrated by Anna Bond of Rifle Paper Co. The range consists of four childrens classics; A Little Princess (here), Anne of Green Gables (here), Little Women (here) and Heidi (here) which can be purchased individually or as a collection here. This is ideal for anyone that enjoys collecting pretty books, childhood classics or even fans of Rifle Paper Co products I'm sure would be happy to find one of these books under the tree come Christmas morning.

Vintage Classics Bronte Series
I think everyone knows someone that loves Jane Eyre, right? If that's you, then a perfect gift may be one of the vintage classic designs of the three novels by the Bronte sisters which includes Jane Erye (here), Wuthering Heights (here) and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (here).
These a weighty and have stunning illustrated fold-out end sheets and give an amazing contemporary feel to some true classics. Perfect for any english literature lovers or true book worm!

Signed & special edition books
A few years ago now I received a special limited edition of The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton. Though I'd never read it before receiving it I was instantly in love with it. For limited edition special front cover books Waterstones is your place, you may pay a slight bit more but it's certainly worth it. As for signed books they aren't as expensive as you may think! Again Waterstones, but online here, offering a wide range of signed books that add something very special to your gift also often independent bookstores are a good call.

Books that support charities 
Maybe your book loving recipient would be glad to receive a book that he or she knows has helped out a charity. That could be a stack of second-hand books you think they may like, from a high street charity shop or online at Oxfam here or one of Waterstones 'Buys Books for Syria' marked books, that donates 100% of the sale price and have already raised over £1.5 million to date. One new release that gives £5 of the sale price to Syria when purchases from Waterstones is The Optician of Lamedusa here, the harrowing true story of a sinking migrant boat based on the experience of an optician from Lampedusa, a small island mid-way between North Africa and Italy and the lasting effects it caused. A book I highly recommend as a short but important read.

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Popular new (ish) releases
The newer the book the more likely it won't have been read by your recipient.Well that's the idea anyway! In the last year we have seen some incredible bestsellers so I decided to pick out my favourites, some that I've read and loved and some that I can't wait to get stuck into over the festive season.

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
Amazon BUY HERE
If you know someone that loved Gone Girl or The Girl On The Train then this is certainly the book for them. This was a holiday read for me a few months back and it really gripped me. The story starts with journalist Lo Blacklock waking to find her flat being burgled. This of course leaves her unsettled and paranoid but when the perfect assignment comes up a week later for a 7-night luxury cruise she thinks it could only do her good to get away from it all. However on board she is witness to a woman being thrown overboard... the only problem - all guests are accounted for. As the cruise carries on with it's journey, as nothing has happened, Lo tries to find the truth while questioning her sanity.

The Muse by Jessie Burton 
Amazon BUY HERE
From the bestselling author of The Miniaturist is another wonderfully crafted and vivid novel. England 1967, Odelle Bastien is a Caribbean emigre trying to make her way in London. When she starts working at the prestigious Skelton Institute of Art, she discovers a painting rumoured to be the work of Isaac Robles, a young artist of immense talent and vision whose mysterious death has confounded the art world for decades.
Spain, 1936. Olive Schloss, the daughter of a Viennese Jewish art dealer, follows her parents to Arazuelo, a poor village on the southern coast. She grows close to Teresa, a young housekeeper, and Teresa's half-brother, Isaac Robles, an idealistic and ambitious painter who dreams of being as famous as Picasso.

The Wonder by Emma Donoghue 
Amazon BUY HERE 
This is a book I can't wait to read after loving Room by Emma Donoghue. Wonder tells the intriguing tale of an eleven-year-old girl who stops eating, but remains miraculously alive and well. A nurse is then sent to investigate and determined whether she is a fraud or a miracle. This comes with so many raved reviews on Amazon and the aesthetically pleasing gilded gold cover makes it an ideal gift to give any book lover.

The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink
Amazon BUY HERE 
Another read for me in the latter end of 2016 and one that finished in two days was The Last Act of Love. Now this isn't the happiest of reads but it's about family, love and grieving. A true story set over 8 years in which the author's brother is left in a coma after a car accident. As you can imagine this is a heavy read in parts however it's about sibling bond and healing.

Great Small Things by Jodi Picoult 
Amazon BUY HERE 
Dubbed 'To Kill A Mockingbird for the 21st century" you can expect great things from this chart topping novel.
When a newborn baby dies after a routine hospital procedure, there is no doubt about who will be held responsible: the nurse who had been banned from looking after him by his father.
What the nurse, her lawyer and the father of the child cannot know is how this death will irrevocably change all of their lives, in ways both expected and not. Small Great Things is about prejudice and power; it is about that which divides and unites us. It is about opening your eyes. I've yet to read this but as soon a Christmas week is here expect me to have my nose in this 500-page sure to be bestselling novel. An amazing gift at only £4.00 on Amazon right now!

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YA Fiction
Whether you are buying for a teenager or someone in their 20's, young adult fiction offers something different, I like to say it offers all the feels. Basically this newly popular genre is Dawson's Creek in emotion minus the corn factor. The below books have my stamp of approval for anyone aged 14 to 29! 

Eleonor & Park by Rainbow Rowell 
Amazon BUY HERE
I mentioned that YA fiction gives you all the feels, right? Well this is the book that made me realise that. With the best characterisation I've read in a long time I totally fell in love with both characters and a book shaped hole was certainly left in my heart after I'd finished reading. On the outset this a typical boy-meets-girl novel but let me express how multilayered this book is. From the unique setting of the 80's, to awkward teenage years and an unexpected twist of broken home lives. This is such an enjoyable read that pulls you straight back to first relationships and how electric and awkward both physical and mental contact can be. My favourite YA fiction book to date. 

Stolen by Lucy Christopher
Amazon BUY HERE
Stolen tells the story of sixteen year old Gemma who is kidnapped and taken to the Australian outback. Making the setting for this book like nothing I've read before, just so unique. As this is a YA book you can expect lots of emotion and that raw-ness that you often don't get with general fiction. I loved every part of this book and it was definitely a story that stayed with me for some time

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon
Amazon BUY HERE
Part love story, part coming-of-age story with one huge problem, protagonist Madaline suffers from a rare condition that makes her allergic to literally everything. The book is nicely broken up with pictures, emails and IM messages which is aimed at teen readers but I always find that adds a more real element to the story. One for YA fans for sure.  

Artistotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Amazon BUY HERE
Another coming-of-age relationship driven story here set in the 80's that centres around two perfectly constructed and believable characters.
Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When they meet they seem to have nothing in common. But as the pair start spending time together, they discover that they share a special kind of friendship--the kind of friendship that changes lives and lasts a lifetime.

I really hope you've found some gift ideas here or at least a few titles to put on your to-read list

Part two of this gift guide will be up in a few days with beauty book recommendations, festive reads and bookish gifts!

Fee xo.
 
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