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My Favorite Books to Gift During the Holiday Season

The holidays have arrived! And that means gift-giving season is upon us. We all like to pick out thoughtful gifts for the people in our lives who mean the most to us, but sometimes that’s easier said than done. Need help deciding what to pick up for your loved ones this holiday season? Here’s your gift guide to the best bookish gifts to get everyone on your holiday shopping list. These books are just a few of my favorites that I’m excited to gift this holiday season.


For that person on your list whom you value for their great sense of humor, gift them A Carnival of Snackery by David Sedaris. This book is Sedaris’s second book of diary entries, this one spanning from 2003 to 2023. Sedaris reflects on everything from dirty jokes overheard at signings to George W. Bush and Donald Trump. Sedaris’s observations about the world around him are all told with his unique style of insightful humor.


Con/Artist is the perfect bookish gift for those who love art and those who love to read true crime stories. So really, it’s for everyone. In this book, Tony Tetro, the most renowned art forger in the world, exposes an art world much more corrupt than anything you could have imagined. Reading this book will have you questioning every work of art you’ve ever seen in museums and galleries.


This holiday season, I’m gifting How to Study Magic to all the witchy people in my life. This is for anyone who has been wanting to study magic but have no idea where to start. Sarah Lyons offers an insider guide for beginning mystics, covering everything from witchcraft to grimoires. This interactive exploration of the world of magic is sure to delight all of your loved ones who love everything mystic, from meditation to divination and everything in between.


For the history buffs on your holiday shopping list (or for anyone you love who’s already watched all of season 5 of Netflix’s The Crown), there’s Andrew Morton’s Elizabeth & Margaret. This fascinating biography explores the intimate lives of Queen Elizabeth II and her sister Margaret. Before their uncle Edward VIII abdicated the throne, Elizabeth and Margaret were the best of friends. But when Margaret was forced to bow to her sister (and her wishes), that dynamic was forever changed. This book explores this extremely close and incredibly fraught relationship over the years.



In my opinion, there’s no holiday gift more thoughtful than a gorgeously illustrated cookbook or recipe book. Who wouldn’t enjoy flipping through the pages of a book like Cocktails, A Still Life? In this book, still-life artist Todd M. Casey, journalist Christine Sismondo, and author James Waller team up to offer up delicious cocktail recipes paired with hand-painted images that you won’t be able to stop looking at. This is a unique cocktail-making guide that aims to delight all of the senses.

Emily Martin has a PhD in English from the University of Southern Mississippi. She’s a contributing editor at Book Riot and blogs/podcasts at Book Squad Goals.