Books are one of my favourite gifts to both give and receive. I love stylish coffee table books and colourful and inspiring books about interior design to adorn my office shelves. I especially love to give my favourite books as gifts or to splurge on a gorgeous hardcover book for a friend that I know he or she wouldn’t buy for themselves.
When I read a book that I find particularly inspiring, perspective altering or like it brought me some kind of clarity, I always give that book as a gift. You can guarantee that the books you’ve seen me recommend more than once on this blog, countless times on social media and/or in any podcast interview or speaking engagement I’ve ever done, you know I’ve given that book as a gift more than once.
With all of this in mind, here are some of my favourite books to gift this year (or to gift to yourself):
Books That Inspire The Journey
Let’s be honest with ourselves – 2020 hasn’t been the easiest year for a lot of people out there. With that in mind, as someone who is always looking for a book to read that might shift my perspective (either personally or for my business), I am all for it. I have a list of books that I love to recommend when I do podcast interviews and speaking engagements, and I have a feeling some of these new reads will make it there, too.
Think Like A Monk – Jay Shetty: A guide to overcoming negativity and really, living your best life. This book is full of practical steps to help overcome anxiety, negativity and fear so that you can experience true happiness.
Didn’t See That Coming – Rachel Hollis: This is the newest in a series of books by author Rachel Hollis. I must admit I haven’t finished reading it yet, but I am enjoying it just as I enjoyed her other two books: Girl, Wash Your Face and Girl, Stop Apologizing.
Everything Is Figureoutable – Marie Forleo: I personally have not yet read this book but it is on my own personal Wishlist for books this year! Everyone I know who has read it as told me that it is a must-read for anyone!
When Less Becomes More – Emily Ley: I thoroughly enjoyed this book by Emily Ley. It’s her third book and I enjoyed it as much as her first two. Any of her books make great gifts for the women in your life. I can’t wait for her fourth, Growing Boldly, which is now available for pre-order.
Books For The Interior Design Lover
This year I have an entire post of gifts for the interior design lover and you’ll find this wonderful list of books there, too. There is something so wonderful about the gift of a lovely coffee table book or a book by your favourite designer that feels really kind and personal.
The Martha Manual & Martha Stewart’s Organizing: I am a huge Martha Stewart fan and I love to have these books on my shelf for reference (they are SO incredibly handy!). I have The Martha Manual and have referred to it countless times for advice, and I’m definitely adding Martha Stewart’s Organizing to my own Wishlist this year!
Make Life Beautiful: I have been a fan of Studio McGee for years and now they have their own Netflix series (so well deserved). This book is full of more than design advice – it’s a great blueprint for success in life, too.
The Home Edit & The Home Edit Life: This is another pair I’ve followed long before they had a series on Netflix. As a self-proclaimed superfan of The Container Store and all things home organization, this is right up my alley. I pre-ordered their first book The Home Edit and have added The Home Edit Life to my holiday Wishlist!
Make Something Good Today: I love HGTV’s Home Town and so when Ben and Erin Napier released a book, I knew I had to have it! Their love of community and improving their own home town is inspiring for everyone!
Live Happy: The Best Ways To Make Your House a Home: Another of my fave HGTV shows is Masters of Flip and I might be a bigger fan because Dave and Kortney Wilson are Canadian, like me! It’s one thing to design a house, but making it feel like a home is extra important, so advice like theirs is invaluable. This is also a great read for friends who love using colour!
How To Style Or Stage Your Home For More Beauty Or A Quicker Sale: This e-book by Calgary designer Monique Shaw is a great last minute gift (because it’s an e-book) and really helpful for those who don’t know where to start when it comes to staging their home for sale, or for loving the home they’re in. Even for the most savvy interior design lover, this is a great gift!
The Lonny Home: If you’re looking for a way to make your home feel Pinterest-worthy but for our own style, then this is the book for you. I love that they help readers find their own authentic style and create the perfectly designed and styled home around that.
Homebody: A Guide To Creating Spaces You Never Want To Leave: There is something so special about creating a space that you never want to leave (as this book’s subtitle suggests). If there’s one thing I’ve learned by binge watching every episode of Fixer Upper (more than once) is that creating spaces that make you feel comfortable and happy at home are everything.
Favourite New Cookbooks
Next to books by interior designers, cookbooks have got to be my absolute favorite to give and receive. I love to collect them and every time I walk down the cookbook aisle at Costco, I swear my husband takes a deep breath!
Magnolia Table & Magnolia Table, Volume 2: I love these books! They are full of wonderful recipes that are easy to follow for family meals and treats. They also look really beautiful on a bookshelf. Perfect for the Fixer Upper fan on your list!
The Hunter Chef Cookbook: This is a great gift for anyone on your list, but definitely for the hunter! It features a long list of elegant wild game recipes that are absolutely delicious!
True Comfort: I love that this delightful cookbook by Kristin Cavallari is full of comfort food recipes that don’t include gluten or refined sugar. This can be really difficult to find, so to have it all in one beautiful hardcover book is fantastic!
Salt Fat Acid Heat: This is a great book for the novice on your list (or really any lover of cooking). I love that it helps its readers master “the elements of good cooking” which can be difficult for many home chefs.
Love & Lemons Everyday: I have shared the Love & Lemons cookbook on my blog and social channels countless times because I loved it so much, so when a sequel was released, you knew it would make my list! I am someone who struggles with ways to prepare seasonal vegetables and these books are the perfect encyclopedia!
Just Good Reads
There are so many categories of books out there that I can’t just fit recommendations for everything into one guide, so here are a few of the uncategorized favourites that I love this year:
Is This Anything?: I am a huge Jerry Seinfeld fan and can’t wait to pick up this book, especially as it is his first one in 25 years! You also know I’m a huge fan of his wife’s cookbooks!
The Answer Is...: I wish I wasn’t recommending this book after Alex Trebek’s sad passing, but it’s worth a read either way.
Dear Girls: Ally Wong’s wit and humour are wonderful in this book where she shares some great advice about life! This book is a collection that the comedienne wrote to her two daughters while they were in utero.
The Meaning of Mariah Carey: This is an artist that has faced a lot in her life and I have been anticipating this memoir for years!
Burke’s Law: Brian Burke is a personal favorite of mine because he doesn’t pull any punches. In this book he opens up about not only his life in hockey, but about many of the personal tragedies that he has faced.
Wine Girl: This is the tale of the world’s youngest sommelier and how she navigates the restaurant world at the young age of 21. Perfect for the wine-lover on your list!
Whiskey In A Teacup: I am fascinated by the South and so when Reese Witherspoon wrote a book recounting her southern upbringing, I knew I had to have it!
Need more inspo? Check out my long list of recommendations right here!
A Reading Wish List
I am someone who buys books for myself ALL THE TIME, making it hard to know which titles someone could purchase for me as a gift. I bet I’m not the only one you know who is like this, which is what makes the WishSlate app so helpful! It’s this super easy to use and amazing app that allows anyone to create an account and add items to a wish list for any occasion! You can even follow your friends and family and see what’s on their lists! Download it here!