Wonderful gifts for book lovers

Wonderful gifts for book lovers

Wonderful gifts for book lovers

Bibliophiles are such fun to shop for at Christmas…

Do you have a book lover in your life? Someone who’s an absolute bookworm, who loves that new-book scent, who views books as treasures? Enter any bookstore and you’ll find a whole world of possibilities to gift to them this holiday season. But what to choose?

I absolutely love shopping for bibliophiles, and there are a good number among my family and friends. I can easily get lost in a bookstore, browsing among the books and the book-related gifts. Invariably, of course, I fall in love with so many items.

Here are some of my favourite picks for gifts this year, available at good bookshops or online. Perhaps you’ll find an idea here for someone in your life – or yourself?


Papyrus: The Invention of Books in the Ancient World

‘A literary phenomenon…’ – Times Literary Supplement

‘… an outstanding, universal and unique book.’– The New York Times

This book, by Spanish historian and philologist Irene Vallejo, has taken the literary world by storm since it’s publication a year ago. From the publisher:

Long before books were mass produced, those made of reeds from along the Nile were worth fighting and dying for. Journeying along the battlefields of Alexander the Great, beneath the eruptions of Mount Vesuvius, at Cleopatra’s palaces and the scene of Hypatia’s murder, award-winning author Irene Vallejo chronicles the excitement of literary culture in the ancient world, and the heroic efforts that ensured this impressive tradition would continue.

Weaved throughout are fascinating stories about the spies, scribes, illuminators, librarians, booksellers, authors, and statesmen whose rich and sometimes complicated engagement with the written word bears remarkable similarities to the world today: Aristophanes and the censorship of the humourists, Sappho and the empowerment of women’s voices, Seneca and the problem of a post-truth world.

Vallejo takes us to mountainous landscapes and the roaring sea, to the capitals where culture flourished and the furthest reaches where knowledge found refuge in chaotic times. In this sweeping tour of the history of books, the wonder of the ancient world comes alive and along the way we discover the singular power of the written word.

Of course, I was drawn to Papyrus because of my fascination with the ancient Library of Alexandria in Egypt, but there is so much more to learn from this book, and the writing is wonderful. It truly is, as the poet Luis Alberto de Cuenca wrote, a ‘literary feast’.

Available from: All good bookstores.


‘The Library’ candle

From the creator, Fly Paper:

‘The Library’ has an old world scent, inspired by the many libraries across the globe and the many places those books have taken us to. The fragrance is a blend of eucalyptus and lavender, as well as the heady aroma of old books.

Available from: The Literary Gift Company.

Also lovely is this candle by Chase and Wonder, with the aromas of rich wood, amber, pink pepper and pomegranate.

Available from: Chase and Wonder.


Classic Paperbacks Memory Game

A wonderful game for all the family from Princeton Architectural Press, with art by Richard Baker. The vintage paperback books are captured in wonderful ‘well-loved’ detail.

Available from: The British Library Shop.


Liberty Faber Poetry Diary 2023

Each year Faber produces a diary for poetry lovers, and this one, for 2023, is a collaboration with Liberty, incorporating their Peacock Manor design. In this week-to-view diary each left-hand page has a poem from Faber’s archives or an iconic cover from one of their books.

Available from: All good bookstores.


Bookshelves Scarf

This 100% silk chiffon scarf features book cover art from 19th- and 20th-century books in the Bodleian Libraries’ collection.

Available from: The Bodleian Libraries Shop.


The World of Jane Austen jigsaw puzzle

A 1,000-piece puzzle with 60 characters and great houses to find. From the publisher:

Take a tour of Austen’s world from the rolling hills of Derbyshire, via Hampshire and Lyme Regis, to the golden stone of the Bath skyline as your build this puzzle.

Also available in the ‘World of’ series are puzzles devoted to Shakespeare, Sherlock Holmes, the Brontës, Charles Dickens, James Joyce, Dracula, Frankenstein and Agatha Christie.

Available from: Waterstones.


Alice in Wonderland cake stand


This cake stand has been created by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and is part of a range which includes all you need for a literary-themed afternoon tea: cups, saucers, teapots, a milk jug and sugar bowl, a cake knife, pastry forks, spoons and side plates.

Available from: Dunelm.

The cake stand would be perfect paired with this recipe book:


Available from: All good bookstores.


Tales of Ancient Egypt

The myths of Ancient Egypt are brought to life here by Roger Lancelyn Green. The book was first published in 1967, and this is a fabulous new clothbound edition by The Folio Society, famous for its beautifully illustrated editions of classic fiction and non-fiction. It really is a book to treasure for children and adults alike; see for yourself at https://www.foliosociety.com/uk/tales-of-ancient-egypt.html.

Available from: The Foilo Society.


Picture credit: Roman Samborskyi/Shutterstock

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