The holiday season is upon us, which means it's time to start crossing names off of your gift list. If you want to let your partner know you understand how much they love reading, then there are plenty of books to give your partner this holiday season, no matter what there interests are. Whether they like science fiction of history, true crime or sports, there's a title out there for them.
When it comes to giving a gift to your partner, there's a lot of pressure to pick out the perfect one.You want your present to express how you feel about them, while showing them how much you know them, understand them, and listen to them, but as much as you want your gift to say something about your significant other, you also want it to say something about you as a couple. That's a lot to demand from a present, and it's hard to find something that can live up to those expectations, but there's one gift that always can: a book.
Ready to cross an important name off of your holiday shopping list? Here are 12 perfect books to give your partner this holiday season, because nothing says "I love you" like the gift of reading.
1. The Whale: A Love Story by Mark Beauregard
For the romantic
To shelve between their copy of Moby Dick and The House of the Seven Gables, gift your partner with this fictional account of the possibly real-life love between Herman Melville and Nathaniel Hawthorne. In his debut novel, Mark Beauregard uses real letters between the two authors, as well as in-depth research, to recreate the summer of 1850 with historical accuracy, but adds in his own bits of fiction in the form of a forbidden romance. A fun and unique read, this is a great gift for your partner who likes a side of romance with his or her reading.
2. Summerlong by Peter S. Beagle
For the classics nerd
If your partner loves ancient history and Greek mythology with a modern twist, they'll love finding Summerlong under their tree. The latest novel by beloved The Last Unicorn author, Summerlong is an enchanting story of a couple who invite a troubled yet enigmatic young woman into their lives, only to find that nothing will ever be the same again. A unique exploration of the story of Persephone and Hades, this is a beautiful read and a great gift for partners who love rich storytelling.
3. Adnan's Story: The Search for Truth and Justice After Serial by Rabia Chaudry
For the true crime addict
If you and your partner's idea of a good night is watching Netflix documentaries about murder and listening to podcasts about true crime, then this nonfiction book about murder, mystery, and, of course, NPR, is the perfect gift this year. A deep dive into the story of Adnan Syed, a young man convicted for the 2000 murder of his ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee, that was made famous by Sarah Koenig's 2014 podcast Serial, Adnan's Story further explores the case, possible new suspects, damning evidence, and more. An intriguing page turner, Adnan's Story proves there's a lot more to be said.
4. Date Night In: More than 120 Recipes to Nourish Your Relationship by Ashley Rodriguez
For the cook
For those long winter nights snowed in with your significant other, give them a book that you can both enjoy: a cookbook. Date Night In has 120 recipes perfect for two people who want eat together and spend time enjoying each other's company, without leaving the house.
5. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch
For the science fiction lover
Part science fiction novel, part thriller, part love story, Blake Crouch's Dark Matter is a perfect holiday present for the partner who loves to read. In it, professor and once promising research scientist Jason Dessen has a happy life: he is with the love of his life, has a beautiful son who he gets along with, and a good, steady job he doesn't hate. All of that is put in jeopardy, though, when Jason is abducted and knocked out, only to wake up in a world where everything is different: his wife isn't his, his son was never born, and he's a celebrated scientific genius. Will Jason ever wake up from this dream, or is this his new reality? Let your partner find out for themselves this holiday.
6. A Taste of Honey by Kai Ashante Wilson
For the fantasy fan
For a short book, Kai Ashante Wilson's A Taste of Honey is packed to the brim with everything science-fiction fans could want: magic, futuristic science, gods and goddesses, royalty, epic battles, and more. For all it's trimmings, however, A Taste of Honey is, at its core, a beautiful and sweeping story of forbidden love between a young man and the soldier who has stolen his heart. A remarkable novella any avid reader will love, A Taste of Honey is the right combination of sweet and sci-fi, making it the perfect holiday gift for your partner.
7. The Life-Writer by David Constantine
For the writer
Lucky enough to have a partner who is a writer, professionally or otherwise? Then you can never go wrong with a book when it comes to holiday giving. This year, share The Life-Writer with them, an intense tale of love, loss, and rediscovery from award-winning author David Constantine. After her husband dies, a literary biographer ditches her current project and instead focuses her attention on telling the story of his life, paying special attention to a beautiful yet ultimately heartbreaking affair he had years before they had even met. Passionate and lyrical, The Life Writer will impress your writer partner with its beautiful prose, and pull at the heartstrings of any reader.
8. Lucky Bastard: My Life, My Dad, and the Things I'm Not Allowed to Say on TV by Joe Buck
For the sports addict
Sports fans like reading too, especially when they get to read about sports. In Lucky Bastard, famed sports broadcaster Joe Buck tells all, about growing up with his legendary father, Jack Buck, about his own rise to fame, about his experiences in the broadcasting booth, about some of the biggest games in sports history. Honest, poignant, and full of fun and heart, this is the kind of sports book any fan will love reading.
9. The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts by Joshua Hammer
For the history buff
If you have a partner who loves history and loves to read, then you can't go wrong with a book about adventurous librarians on a quest to preserve important historical artifacts. The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu tells the real-life story of Abdel Kader Haidara, a librarian who organized a plot to successfully smuggle 350,000 medieval manuscripts out of his country, right under the nose of al-Qaida. An incredible story of bravery and the importance of art and culture in the face of extremism, this hero's story is one worth gifting this holiday.
10. The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Beats Up the Marvel Universe by Ryan North and Erica Henderson
For the comic book lover
If you and your partner watch all the superhero shows and movies together, then this new graphic novel about one of Marvel's coolest and most popular modern characters will make a cool and thoughtful holiday gift. In this stand-alone adventure, Squirrel Girl will face her toughest enemy yet: herself, or rather, an evil duplicate of herself created to take down the Marvel Universe. A fun and hilarious read, The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Beats Up the Marvel Universe is a must-have gift for comic fans this year.
11. The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
For the literary nerd
Literary lovers always have room on their TBR lists for award winning novels, so if the reader in your life hasn't gotten around to reading Colson Whitehead's NBA winner, now is their chance. A unique and remarkable novel that reimagines the Underground Railroad as an actual railroad, Whitehead's s book brings readers back to pre-Civil War America and lets you experience it from the perspective of one terrified but unbreakable slave, Cora. A powerful novel critics and readers everywhere are talking about, no holiday is complete without a copy of The Underground Railroad.
12. The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
For the scientist
From the Pulitzer Prize-winner author of The Emperor of All Maladies comes a riveting book about the thing that defines who we are: genes. In The Gene: An Intimate History, Siddhartha Mukherjee writes the biography of the gene, exploring what is, what was, and what could be in all of us, using the context of his own family history. Fascinating and illuminating, The Gene is a must-have for science lovers this holiday.
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