Top Ten Tuesday: Great books to give (and receive!)


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Books I Hope Santa Brings.

Well… I don’t celebrate Christmas, so I don’t expect any visits from Santa. But, I did give some wonderful books as gifts in 2020, so I thought I’d highlight a few of my favorites as an alternative to this week’s topic.

1) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone: MinaLima Edition: This gorgeous book is perfect for Potter fans! MinaLima is the graphic design house that provides so many of the graphics for the HP films. This book includes full-color illustrations, plus fold-outs and little extras, as well as the full orignal text. (I gave it as a gift, but liked it so much that I bought one for myself too!)

2) Tales of Beedle the Bard illustrated by Chris Riddell: Another treat for HP fans! Chris Riddell is such a talented artist (I have his editions of Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman and How To Stop Time by Matt Haig). It’s a large-sized book with amazing illustrations, and was a big hit with the person I gave it to.

3) March trilogy by John Lewis: I gave this set to a graphic novel fan who also happens to be fascinated with US history. She loved it.

4) WordCloud editions of classics: I’ve given a few of these over the years, as well as buying a couple for myself. They’re such a fun and cheerful way to share classic fiction.

5) A few picks for Outlander fans — assuming they own all the books in the series already, can’t go wrong with any of these: 

6) For a native San Franciscan now living far from home:


7) Birthday gifts for a friend who tends to be my bookish soulmate:

8: Gifts for an Octavia Butler fan:

Not quite 10 separate items… but when all else fails, can’t go wrong with a bookish giftcard! 

What books do you love to give? Any particular books you hope to receive? Share your links, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany by Jane Mount: The perfect gift for the bibliophiles in your life!

If you’re looking for the absolutely perfect gift for a very special booklover, I’m here to tell you:


Bibliophile is just so, so wonderful. Anyone who’s crazy about books (and let’s face it, if you’re reading a book blog right now, you fit the category) will adore this book.

In this gorgeous hardcover, artist Jane Mount creates a reference guide/ode to great books/piece of artwork that is a pleasure to page through. I’ve had it sitting out on my nightstand for a few weeks now, ever since I treated myself to my very own copy, and I can personally attest that the few minutes I spend each day opening Bibliophile at random and soaking in a few pages at a time are utter bliss. And who doesn’t need that at the end of the day?

In my happy place

Okay, so now that I’ve raved on for a bit, here’s a little more about what’s actually inside.

Bibliophile is a smorgasbord of book-related subjects and illustrations, focusing on everything from favorite bookstores to bookstore cats, striking libraries to writers’ pets, iconic covers to books made into great movies.

The book is a gorgeous balance of illustrations and words, with full-color spreads to amaze and delight, such as the ones featured in this review on Read It Forward:

Jane Mount is a talented artist who specializes in books. You can check out her amazing work at Ideal Bookshelf, where you can find prints, notecards, totes and more — or if you really want to splurge you can even order a custom painting of your own favorite bookshelf.

Just a little taste of what’s available at

By the way, you’ll probably want to check out her previous book, My Ideal Bookshelf, which features a round-up of cultural celebrities — writers, chefs, and more — describing the books they love the most, with Mount’s beautiful illustrations for each shelf.

And look at that! A post full of gift ideas for your favorite booklovers — or even little treats for yourself, because you deserve it.



The details:

Title: Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany
Author: Jane Mount
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Publication date: September 11, 2018
Length: 224 pages
Genre: Non-fiction/art/reference
Source: Purchased





Sunday sillies: Meet Nessie, my new little book friend

Here’s what I treated myself to this week:

This is Nessie, an adorable little bookmark who makes me smile when I see her holding my place for me. Here’s what she looks like out of her box:

And here’s Nessie keeping my place for me:

Isn’t she cute? She comes in other colors too (turquoise or purple, although the purple looks more magenta to me).

Granted, Nessie isn’t entirely perfect. Sure, she does a great job marking my pages while we’re at home, especially when I have my current book sitting all nice and prim and proper on a shelf or on my nightstand. But Nessie falls down on the job when I take her out of the house. I can’t leave home without a book tossed in my bag or backpack, and Nessie doesn’t stay put when jostled around. She’d be perfect if she had either a magnetic clip of some sort or a long bottom piece to help her stay wedged in between the pages where she’s supposed to be.

But alas, no one is perfect! I accept Nessie for who she is and appreciate her for all she does for me.

If you want your own Nessie, you can find her on the Ototo website. Here’s a screenshot of Nessie, all ready for adoption: