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- Below, you’ll find 16 useful and thoughtful book gifts for the book lovers in your life.
- While some are physical books, others are book-related – such as subscriptions or artwork.
- Need more book gift ideas? Check out the best books of 2021 and the best books to read in your 20s.
The Insider Reviews team is full of readers, and we have strong opinions on the best books to gift – whether they’re bestselling self-help books, gripping YA novels, or short essay collections. If you’re here looking for literary gifts for the bookworm in your life, you’ve come to the right place.
16 thoughtful and useful book gifts for people who love to read:
Book of the Month (BOTM)’s experts pick five new and noteworthy books every month, and members pick which one they’d like to receive. They get a hardcover of a vetted new read, and you get to give a gift that keeps going for a few months.
BOTM has also been known to pick titles before they become massively popular; you can find the best Book of the Month books of 2021 here.
A Kindle Oasis so they can read on the go
If they travel or commute, a Kindle can be an extremely thoughtful gift. Books are often heavy and dense, and this Paperwhite can store thousands of books or 160 Audible audiobooks. It’s also water-resistant so they don’t have to be overly precious with it near water. We think it’s the best overall e-reader, and you can read a full Kindle Oasis review here.
A customized embosser to personalize every book
This unique, thoughtful gift embosses books with “from the library of [their name]” by pressing down on this device like it’s a hole-puncher. It makes each book feel personal — and can help them track down titles they’ve loaned out.
A framed print of their favorite classic’s first edition book cover
Gift the bookworm in your life their favorite book’s beautiful and ornate first edition cover in a frame. It’ll serve as a beautiful reminder of something meaningful and enjoyable to them — and that you remembered what they really love.
An Audible gift card for all the audiobooks on their wish list
If they love a good book — and might appreciate hearing someone else reading it — audiobooks are an excellent gift.
They get all the convenience of hands-free listening (so they can commute, exercise, fold laundry, take a luxurious bath, etc.), and they get to choose their own adventure with the titles on their mind.
A cute novelty candle, they can light in their reading nook
One of their favorite books, signed by the author
You can find first-edition books, signed copies, and rare books online, too — specifically on AbeBooks or eBay. (Note: You’ll want to be cautious that the individual sellers and their reviews seem trustworthy to you.)
A virtual ticket to a lecture on eight books that changed the world
One Day U has a streaming library of lectures from world-renowned professors on diverse topics. This two-hour talk, given by Joseph Luzzi from Bard College, tells us about eight books that changed the world — from the Bible to “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
A longtime book nerd will love the thoughtfulness of a niche gift that deepens both their knowledge and enjoyment of books. You can read a full review of One Day U here.
A collectible edition of their favorite book
You can find ornate, collectible editions of beloved books at Barnes and Noble for under $50. Show them that you remember a book they love by giving them a version that will bring them joy just by being displayed somewhere in their home.
Books that could win major literary prizes this year
If they love high-brow literature, these are the easiest book lists you should shop from: The books in the running for the 2021 Booker Prize, the 2021 International Booker Prize, and the 2021 National Book Awards (in poetry, translated literature, fiction, non-fiction, and young adult books).
Looking for a crowd-pleaser? We recommend “Bewilderment” by Richard Powers. It was longlisted for the National Book Award and shortlisted for the Booker Prize. Powers’ earlier book, “The Overstory,” also won the Pulitzer Prize in 2019.
A celebrity author-led writing MasterClass
Are they a fan of writing as well as reading? Have they mentioned a desire to write a hit TV show or had a rough outline of a thriller in their head for years?
Give them hours of enjoyment and expert instruction in writing from the best of the best. MasterClass in particular offers a wide variety of online writing classes led by celebrity authors, from TV writing taught by Shonda Rhimes to writing by Malcolm Gladwell. You can find a review of MasterClass here.
A cozy reading bean bag
If you want to build a cozy reading nook for your loved one, we’d suggest a bean bag they can snuggle into and reshape to their preferences.
We recommend the Moon Pod as the best bean bag: It changes shape and its high-density beads are supposed to mimic the feeling of weightlessness in flotation therapy. Check out our other favorite bean bags here.
Any book on the Goodreads “Best of the Year” list
“The Four Winds” by Kristin Hannah made it onto a lot of high-profile “best of 2021” recommendation lists made by readers this year — from Goodreads to Book of the Month. If they haven’t read it yet, it’s probably on their wishlist.
The New Yorker cartoon literary playing cards
Book lovers will get a kick out of these funny playing cards featuring literature-related cartoons from The New Yorker.
Cute socks inspired by their favorite read
The Insider Reviews team’s favorite books
Personal finance executive editor Libby Kane said she regularly buys copies of “I Will Teach You to Be Rich” to give them away. “I’m often asked to recommend a personal finance book, and pretty much without fail I go straight to [this one].”
Take a page out of our proverbial books and gift these titles to your favorite bookworms.