A Holiday Gift Guide for Booklovers!

Books are a wonderful gift for the holidays, as they can either be something that is very much the person to whom you are giving the book, or it can be something that is very you, that you want to share with them.

I have come up with an fun little eclectic mix this week, and will have more in the weeks leading up to the holidays!

In the meantime, happy shopping and happy reading!

Warmest wishes,


Stephanie Dickison
Publisher & Editor - the knack

The Good Deed Guide: Simple Ways to Make the World A Better Place James & Lisa Grace

This fun and gifty book is chock full of interesting tidbits. There are practical suggestions such as how to remove a splinter or sew on a button, which I'm sure you'll discover at least one thing you didn't know (mine were how to get a cat out of a tree and how to help someone overcome a fear of flying) and things that you may not have considered before like how to confront prejudice and how to start a neighbourhood watch.

I love the lists - 25 simple ways to do good for strangers and 25 simple ways to do good for your community - and the book is small and not at all intimidating, so you'll feel like you can actually follow the steps to getting a cat out of a tree and jump-starting a car!

I think this is a little book of empowerment right here and isn't that a great gift to pass along? You'll probably also want to get one for yourself while you're at it...

A Year of Mornings 3191 Miles Apart A Photographic Collaboration by Maria Alexandra Vetttese and Stephanie Congdon Barnes

This is one of those books that just makes everything stop around you, that makes you sit on the edge of a chair and just let the awesomeness of the idea sink in.

"On the morning of December 7, 2006, Maria Alexandra Vettese and Stephanie Congdon Barnes each took a digital photo of everyday objects randomly arranged on their kitchen tables and, unbeknownst to one another, uploaded them to the website Flickr. Noticing a remarkable similarity between their images, they agreed to document their mornings by posting one photo to a shared blog every weekday for a year. Their site, 3191 - named after the distance in miles between their homes in Portland, Maine, and Portland, Oregon—quickly acquired a worldwide following of devotees fascinated by the magical coincidences and pictorial synchronicity of their photographic pairings."

I like it in book form better, because you can go from beginning to end or just flip through around the middle and still, it is like being a part of something extraordinary.

The images are of course phenomenal and moving, but the idea of the connection is what really gets to me - that the randomness isn't so random and there are more like-minded people than we probably realize. These two women are connecting on a plane without ever speaking and that, along with their stunning imagery, moves me beyond words.

The Rough Guide to Classic Novels: From Don Quixote to American Pastoral Simon Mason

I am not a classics reader. I do not want to spend the holidays wrapped up in Dickens or Austen. But I know that this is a passion for a lot of folks and there are often many on their list that they have yet to get to.

Thus, this is a great book for those who are already lovers of the classics or for people who want to sink their teeth in, but don't know where to get started.

There are over 230 of them, so chances are, you'll be opening up minds and hearts. And the text includes plot and author information, along with suggestions what to read next, so then you can start compiling your gift book list for next year.

Squeaky Green: The Method Guide to Detoxifying Your Homeby Eric Ryan and Adam Lowry

I'm sure you've heard of or seen or used Method cleaners. They were one of the first environmentally-friendly brands to go mainstream.

Now the creators of Method have come out with an easy-to-follow guide that goes by room and offers facts and tips to help you keep a clean home -without all of the toxins and chemicals found in regular household cleaners.

This is a great gift for a student moving into residence or the bachelor that just got his first apartment or for the family that wants to make their home chemical-free.

Just Write: The Art of Personal Correspondence Molly O'Shaughnessy

As you know, I'm an avid card and letter writer. But that doesn't mean I always know what to say.

That's why I am so excited about Just Write. It offers fantastic help and guidance for specific occasions and situations and suggestions on working with clients, including tips for email.

I am always looking to write a better card, more concise email or more meaningful letter and this book has helped tremendously.

I got this book for myself, but that doesn't mean it doesn't make a fantastic gift. But thanks to Just Write, my cards and letters this season will bethat much better.

And for me, that's just about the best present ever!

Stephanie Dickison

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