BTT asked: It’s my Dad’s birthday today, which makes me wonder … do you like to give books as gifts?
I’m usually torn. I love giving and sharing books, but it can be hard. The giftee can be difficult to please, or you don’t know what they’ve read (or what they thought of books they have read). Even people who love to read and love to get books can be hard to gift books to … so, does that make you pause and reach for the neckties or DVDs or sweaters … anything BUT a book at gift-giving time? How do you feel about getting books yourself? Are you picky or easy? (For the record, I’m told I’m VERY hard to buy for, even though I’ll read just about anything … go figure.
My answer: I love getting books as gifts! But, because I don’t keep books or have a book collection, I don’t usually ask for books as gifts. Instead I use the library. So it’s mostly impractical for me to ask for them as gifts, but I still do love receiving books, even just library books!
And I think books make great gifts. I usually give books to people if I know there’s one they would probably like. If I know the person is a reader like me, then I’ll either give them a book I know they want, or just a gift certificate to a book store so they can pick their own book.
In general I think it’s a good idea to give someone a list of possible gifts for them to get you, that way they can pick something off that list and you’ll still surprised and they’ll feel good knowing they’re getting you something you actually want. So I’d say if you want people to buy you books, give them a book wish-list to choose from. If you’re unsure what to buy someone, then a gift card is always a good idea, in my opinion.
Also, if you’re not sure a person will like a book, you can get them a library book. This might sound strange, but I’ve done it in the past and the person loved it and read it but ultimately didn’t want to own the book. If they did, then I could have purchased a copy later. So it lets you try out the book for free. It depends on your relationship with the person though and some people might be insulted by it, but it could also solve your book giving problems!
What about you? Do you like getting and giving books? How do you figure out the perfect book to give? How do you make sure others buy you books you like or haven’t read yet? Would you like to receive a library book as a gift? Or do you prefer gift cards?