Tuesday, December 9, 2008

12 Days of Books: Day 9

Gift Idea #9: A Gift Card to a Local, Independent Bookstore

Purpose: Let your favorite booklover decide what to buy

This year, avoid impersonal gift cards from those big box stores and mega online retailers, and seek out something more special. A gift card to a local, independent bookstore is always in good taste and shows an extra level of thoughtfulness that will be appreciated by the booklovers on your shopping list.

This is a great way to impress someone who lives in a different city. Do a bit of research (it's easy with the internet), and uncover a charming, independent bookstore in your giftee's hometown. Your giftee will be touched you took the time. As an added benefit, you may introduce a booklover to a new neighborhood treasure, a gift that will be long remembered.

If your giftee lives far from a bookstore, consider a gift card from Powell's, perhaps the world's largest independent bookstore. I can say from experience that the customer service you'll receive from Powell's, even for online sales, will make you feel like you live right around the corner.

1 comment:

rjnagle said...

I tend to be glum about indie booksellers. Let's face it; B&N and Borders have a good variety of books (even for literary snobs) as well as a mix of popular stuff. I attribute it to the huge store size as well as better inventory management. I don't see indie stores as offering anything interesting to me.

I used to say that presuming to know what a person likes (and hasn't read) was full of risks. However, so many books are being published these days that it's hard to buy someone they already own or read. (As long as you stick to lists of obscure classics or things published in the last year).

A gift certificate to a used bookstore offers the possible of more serendipity (especially at the $1 racks).Even sales at branch libraries can offer treasures.