Helloo and Merry Christmas! Here's a merry little top 10 of books that would make great gifts this festive season, and are also some of my best reads of 2016. I've tried to pick books across a few genres to cater to different tastes, but as I've read and enjoyed them all there's a lot of magic, myth, great female leads, and thrilling tales! My bookish gift guide from last year also contains some crackers, which would make equally good gifts this year too. Here they are!
The Comet Seekers- Helen Sedgwick
This beautiful book is full of ghosts, comets, family, incest (!) and snow. The hardback is a truly lovely book that would make a wonderful gift! Perfect for readers who loved The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan.
The Graces- Laure Eve
A story of sort-of-witches, which leaves to guessing at every turn, with the enchanting Grace siblings and their charmed life. I loved this book so much. Lovers of Buffy will be into this story I reckon!
And I Darken- Kiersten White
An amazing piece of historical fiction, inspired by Vlad the Impaler, we instead have the fierce and fearless Lada Dracul, who struggles to balance the love for her homeland and her life as a captive of a neighbouring Ottoman Empire. I adore listening to The History Chicks podcast: listeners will love this book too. Basically if you like a bit of history and amazing women then And I Darken is for you!
Riverkeep- Martin Stewart
Dark and grim and gloomy but full of magic and all set on a epic river journey, Riverkeep is one for lovers of adventure. With an ensemble cast of very different characters there's something for everyone in this tale of a quest to save a life.
The Girl From Everywhere- Heidi Heilig
This is a book of adventure, time travel, romance, mystery, map reading, and loyalty all set on a ship and mostly in Hawaii. Another brilliant ensemble cast with a great female lead.
Sofia Khan is Not Obliged- Ayisha Malik
A different kind of book, no magic here, but instead an awesome story of Sofia Khan's adventures in dating in what has been described as "the muslim Bridget Jones." Full of wit and humour, balancing religion and relationships, marriage-obsessed relatives, racists on the tube, praying at work, writing her book, and joining a Muslim dating site, Sofia's story is extremely entertaining and engaging.
The Secret of Nightingale Wood- Lucy Strange
A story of a little girl lost in a family post tragedy, who discovers a 'witch' in the woods by their new country house. This beautiful book make me shed a few tears and I even stopped reading it for a few days because I was so angry at the stupid evil doctor. A wonderful gift for an actual child or for a pretend grown up child like me!
Take it as a Compliment- Maria Stoian
A graphic story collection featuring illustrated tellings of harassment, sexual abuse and other fun things like that. Sounds grim, but it's a beautiful book and a brilliant call for action. Inject a little feminist discourse into your Christmas Day why don't you!
How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less- Sarah Glidden
Sarah Glidden's graphic memoir follows her trip through Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, the Golan Heights, across Israel as she struggles to understand her ancestral homeland. Her artwork is beautiful in this reflective travel memoir. A perfect gift of graphic novel lovers!
One Hundred Nights of Hero- Isobel Greenberg
A beautiful giant book from the creator of the equally beautiful Encyclopedia of Early Earth, which I recommended in last year's gift guide. The One Hundred Nights of Hero is set in Early Earth but with new characters Cherry and Hero, referencing The Arabian Nights with 100 nights of storytelling. You will be in the very good books of whoever you gift this too!