Wednesday, December 3, 2008

12 Days of Books: Day 3

Gift Idea #3: Booklovers calendar ($10)

Purpose: Give the gift of good ideas

This 2009 Book Lovers Page-A-Day Calendar is filled with 365 book recommendations. Each page includes a short description of a book along with an explanation of why the book is worth reading. The selections vary widely and include both fiction and non-fiction, contemporary and classic. Every year, I treat myself to one of these calendars (if I don't receive one as a gift). As a result, I’ve discovered many new books I want to read and recalled several old favorites.

A couple example entries from the 2008 calendar:

Friday, October 10: The Education of Henry Adams by Henry Adams
As history, as literature, as autobiography, this book is one of the gold standards in American letters. Unless you are very young, you’ve probably read it, but how long ago? It’s time to read it again, with all the insight you have gained since you first read it. Adams viewed his country through the mirror of himself and his family. What he saw gave him a great deal for his acute and wide-ranging mind to mull over. We, his fortunate readers, enjoy the result, a work arresting, entertaining, and profound.

Saturday, Oct 18: The Regeneration Trilogy by Pat Barker
Barker’s World War I trilogy takes on the insanity of war and questions of class and identity. The books center on William Rivers, a psychologist and social anthropologist who treats shell-shocked soldiers so they can return to the front. Rivers is one of the actual historical personages who inhabit the book. Using both real historical figures and fictional characters, Barker weaves real and imagined worlds together beautifully, with spare, lucid writing that proves to be truly moving and insightful. The Ghost Road [the third book in the trilogy] was awarded the British Commonwealth’s Booker Prize.

How to make this gift even better (and more expensive): Ask the recipient to save five (or ten or twenty) of the book suggestions over the course of the year for a gift next holiday season.


bermudaonion said...

Oh my gosh! I want that calendar.

Book Lover Lisa said...

Nice! I might have to treat myself to one of those, too.

Anna van Gelderen said...

What an excellent idea!