Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The favorite books YOU got as gifts...



...quite a few people answer my informal poll!

I'm doing what I can to encourage people to buy books for Christmas! They are enduring gifts, usually not very expensive, and have the power to change lives and open doors of learning and imagination.

Yesterday I asked people on Twitter, Facebook and the comments section of this blog to tell me about a favorite book that they received as a gift. I got some great answers!

Here they are:

"A book I had loved as a child - Never Tease a Weasel. But if you are looking for books to give, I love Reflections for Ragamuffins by Brennan Manning. It was a gift to myself."--Kay Hennis Day of Loop de Loops in La La Land

Speaking of gifts to yourself, my daughter Elizabeth says some of her favorite books were "gifts to herself." They include one of her all-time favorites, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, by Betty Smith. A big World War 2 buff, she also cites 1942:The Year that Tried Men's Souls, by Winston Groom, which was a gift from her grandmother.

Mandy Erickson works with my daughter at Borders, and you can see her jotted recommendations under books around the store--as with Francine Rivers' wonderful Redeeming Love. One of Mandy's favorite gifts? "The Jolly Postman! It was filled with letters and postcards that fairytale characters had written to each other. So cool."



Mark Jones is a Georgia pastor who tells me: "A good friend gave me a copy of A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23...which is a classic work from the seventies. I still have it on the bookshelf and refer to it fairly regularly for a great illustration."

An old college friend of mine, Lesa Russo, had a few to mention: "A biography of Lucille Ball - amazing book and life story. Also Erma Bombeck's life book." She also says The Shack and The Grace Awakening were book-gifts that were life-changing for her.

From Darlene Rexrode :"One favorite was The Giving Tree when I was young."

Ben Ratze is a teen who attends the school where my husband is the administrator: "The Narrow Road, I loved that book, it has little stories of missionaries that laid down their lives for the cause of Christ. It's a great book for teens." (I got curious about this book, and it really does look good--it's co-authored by the likes of Brother Andrew, John and Elizabeth Sherill, and the members of Jars of Clay.)



Laura Elizabeth Klinger's favorite is by one of my favorites, Irish author Maeve Binchy: "The Lilac Bus," says Laura. "We seldom are aware of the intricacies of a person's life; we don't know how others don't understand, or misinterpret, us."

"Captivating."--Melanie Coldiron Hull(I'm thinking Melanie might be referring to this book by John and Stasi Eldridge.)

Laurie Lynn Kobernat Nunez goes to my church. She cites a book I also bought and enjoyed, by a long-time missionary to the Philippines: "Sam [her husband] just bought me Never Alone by Uldine Steffy at our missions conference - it's awesome!! I love reading biographies/nonfiction..."

"Piercing the Darkness by [Frank]Peretti," says Kristina Clark Melville. "I know it's fiction but it helped me visualize what spiritual warfare could look like."

Writer Tracey Bateman, whose books I've enjoyed, says her favorite book-gift ever was The Best Loved Poems of the American People.

Linda of Mocha with Linda, whose "Booked for the Holidays" give-away I mentioned yesterday, tells me: "When I was 9 or 10, my grandmother gave me Little Town on the Prairie. I devoured it - and was delighted to find out there was a whole series of books! I told my mom 'Grandmother didn't know she was starting me on a whole new reading adventure.' I just about wore those books out and practically had them memorized."

From BJ Hoff, whose portrayals of Irish characters I love: "There have been so many! Everyone knows I love receiving books for birthdays, Christmas--any and all occasions. But the one that stands out most is probably The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing. 3 volumes, given by husband."

Writer Susan J. Reinhardt tells me: "My Mom and I were in the Christian bookstore last weekend. She bought me two Joel Rosenberg books for Christmas. My to-be-read stack is multiplying. Yay!"



Ann-Marie Soderstrom, whose Lefthanded Rabbit blog I enjoy a lot, illustrates how a book given to a child can be life-changing: "My mom gave me The Hiding Place when I was 12, and it changed my life. I began to study the Holocaust in earnest and still do today. Still my favorite book." I love that book too, Ann-Marie! An incredible portrait of grace amid persecution.

Thanks so much to everyone who replied!

3 comments:

Ann-Marie said...

*blushing* Gosh, thanks for including me, Cindy! I've got quite a few books on my Christmas list already, and now I get to add a few of these great suggestions, as well.

P.S. - My mom is really enjoying the second book in the Let Them Eat Cake series you recommended. She raved about the first one, too!

Randy said...

Cindy,

One of the best book gifts I received was from my dear friend Steve. It was Brennan Manning's "The Rabbi's Heartbeat." I guess what makes the book even more special is Steve's inscription in the first page of the book to me. Very endearing. Books do make great gifts. Of all things, it's Rosemary's birthday today, (Friday as I write this) and I got her a Barnes and Noble giftcard for her love of reading. I don't think she'll be too disappointed with that and the steak dinner I plan to take her to!

Be well,

Randy

Raike said...
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