Books that teach, empower, and inspire are gifts that truly keep on giving.
Give the gift of joy this holiday season with books that encourage readers to create, explore, and learn something new. From the ultimate guide to baking the perfect pie to an empowering collection of joyful verses for kids to sing out loud, these books offer meaningful inspiration and lifelong skills for all ages.
Plus, enter our GIVE JOY Gift Guide and Giveaway for a chance to win a bundle of books from your favorite gift guide category—Books for Makers, Books for Kids, or Books for Nature Lovers. Find details and enter at the bottom of the page.
Books for Makers
Collage Your Life by Melanie Mowinski
Requiring minimal equipment—just scissors, glue, paper, and pens—collage is the ultimate accessible craft that offers limitless creative possibilities. Like meditation or journaling, making collage can be an avenue for self-reflection and artistic exploration. Perfect for crafters, journaling fans, scrapbookers, and artists alike.
Knit 2 Socks in 1 by Safiyyah Talley
Socks are a favorite project of knitters, but “single sock syndrome” — losing interest in knitting that second sock after the first one is done — is the perpetual dilemma. Knit 2 Socks in 1 is a tried-and-true sock-knitting technique, and with 21 different sock styles, featuring a wide range of stitch patterns, design elements, levels of difficulty, and sizes, it’s the perfect gift for knitters from all backgrounds to join in on the fun.
The Art of Papercraft by Helen Hiebert
This one-of-kind collection of 40 unique projects—each using just one sheet of paper—combines decorative paper techniques like marbling, stamping, and stenciling with dimensional techniques like origami, cutting, folding, quilling, stretching, weaving, and pop-ups. The rich variety of projects will delight crafters, artists, and designers alike.
The Wildcrafted Cocktail by Ellen Zachos
Create one-of-a-kind mixed drinks with common flowers, berries, roots, and leaves that can be found along roadsides or in backyards. With recipes for more than 50 garnishes, syrups, infusions, juices, and bitters that can be incorporated into 45 surprising and delightful handcrafted cocktails, like Stinger in the Rye, Don’t Sass Me, and Tree-tini, it’s the perfect gift for friends and family who like to walk on the wild side.
Pie Academy by Ken Haedrich
Novice and experienced bakers alike will discover the secrets to baking a fabulous pie from scratch. This is a gift that keeps on giving (and giving!) with 255 recipes for every kind and style of pie, from classic apple pie and pumpkin pie to cream pies, freezer pies, slab pies, hand pies, turnovers, and much more. Weighing in at a whopping four pounds, Pie Academy serves up forty years of pie wisdom in a single, satisfying package.
Books for Kids
Circle Round Picture Books by Rebecca Sheir
This lively series adapted from the popular Circle Round podcast, produced by WBUR, shares folktales from around the world that teach important lessons such as kindness, generosity, and acceptance. Each book is colorfully illustrated by an artist from the culture where the folktale originates and is accompanied by interactive prompts and activities. The perfect gift bundle for every young storyteller.
Baking Class and Cooking Class by Deanna F. Cook
These cookbooks for children ages 8–12 feature easy-to-follow and kid-friendly recipes. Lively step-by-step photos teach chefs-in-training the basics of baking and cooking along with essential skills like following directions and accurately measuring ingredients. Bonus activities and pull-out props encourage kids to share their homemade delights with pride.
Love Your Amazing Self by Ofosu Jones-Quartey
Meditation teacher and hip-hop musician Ofosu Jones-Quartey encourages kids to strengthen their self-confidence and seek the positive in their lives with this joyful collection of lyrical verses written to be read, sung, and spoken aloud. Accompanied by the vibrant illustrations of Ndubisi Okoye, short reflections, and mindfulness activities, this one-of-a-kind book is an empowering gift to spread joy and encourage confidence.
Julia Rothman Sticker Books by Julia Rothman
Stuck trying to find the perfect gift? Look no further than the Nature Anatomy, Ocean Anatomy, and Farm Anatomy sticker books. Each contains over 750 whimsical and educational illustrated stickers from Julia Rothman’s wildly popular anatomy series.
Backpack Explorer series by The Editors of Storey Publishing
This best-selling collection of colorful take-along field guides encourages kids to look at, listen to, and learn about the wonders of the natural world. From discovering trees to watching birds and searching for shells on the beach, this series is perfect for every young explorer.
Books for Nature Lovers
Wild Wisdom series by Maia Toll
Enlightening and illuminating, this collection of books, puzzles, and oracle cards sheds light on the magic and mystery that abounds in the natural world. Each volume offers guidance and rituals for personal reflection based on the symbolic powers of animals, vegetables, and minerals. Stunning illustrations by Kate O’Hara make this series a truly unique gift.
Keeping a Nature Journal by Clare Walker Leslie
The third edition of this highly acclaimed guide to observing, recording, and appreciating the wonders of nature includes step-by-step drawing techniques, pages from the author’s own nature journals, and prompts for journaling in any location. Requiring no special skills, artistic ability, or even nature knowledge, this is a thoughtful gift for anyone hoping to strengthen their connection with the natural world.
The Naturalist’s Notebook by Nathaniel T. Wheelwright and Bernd Heinrich
Create a long-term record of your daily nature observations, such as the first snowfall of winter, to refer to year after year. With a three-piece case, gilt edges, a burgundy ribbon bookmark, and a belly band with gold foil stamping, this book is a one-of-a-kind gift for all nature lovers.
The Julia Rothman Collection by Julia Rothman
Farm Anatomy, Nature Anatomy, and Food Anatomy are presented in a beautifully designed slipcase with ten frameable prints in this collectible box set. Rothman’s popular line drawings offer a whimsical and educational guide to life on a farm, nature’s hidden wonders, and delectable tidbits from kitchens and pantries around the globe.
Being with Trees by Hannah Fries
This beautiful collection combines inspirational writing from poets, naturalists, artists, scientists, and thinkers with reflections and guided mindfulness exercises to encourage observation and foster appreciation for the natural world. Accompanied by beautiful forest photography and a foreword by Robin Wall Kimmerer, this book is a thoughtful gift that brings the wonders and healing power of nature to every reader.
Enter the GIVE JOY
Gift Guide and Giveaway
We are selecting three winners to receive a bundle of books from the category of their choice. Simply enter your name and email address for a chance to win. Open to US and Canadian residents. One entry per person. Complete terms and conditions can be found here.
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