I don’t tend to give books as gifts but that’s only because I worry the recipient will think it’s one I got for free! However… they’re ideal presents and this time of year non-fiction books (including memoirs, cookbooks, self-help books) are out in force because they are – indeed – excellent gift ideas!
I’m not hugely into non-fiction. My eyes glaze over at the idea of someone’s memoir – no matter how interesting their life might be, or how inspiring they are. But two hardcover books have arrived (at casa Debbish) recently that I think would make excellent gifts.
The Art of Kindness: Caring for Ourselves, Each Other & Our Earth
by Meredith Gaston
Published by Hardie Grant
on November 1st 2018
Source: Hardie Grant
The Art of Kindness will delight and inspire kindness to yourself, to others and to our world. Kindness spreads like the ripples on a pond and a warm smile is the universal language of kindness.
Meredith Gaston's whimsical illustrations remind us that small acts of kindness truly are the sunshine needed for happiness to grow.
I adored Gaston’s The Art of Wellbeing, released last year, which was also beautifully illustrated with gorgeous messages. This book is a mixture of important messages, journal prompts and some exercises (umm… not like burpees though!).
In Gaston’s own words… “there could be no greater time than now to deeply understand and practise the art of kindness in daily life. In this busy, bustling and impatient world we call home, a world that too often seems brash, disconnected and overwhelming, kindness remains a breath of fresh air, a life-affirming anchor. And uncomplicated healing source of joy and comfort.”
And the book, its words, messages and illustrations offer a beautiful combination of whimsy, practicality and substance.
The Art of Kindness by Meredith Gaston was published in Australia by Hardie Grant.
And then there’s this…Well Read Cookies - Beautiful Biscuits Inspired by Great Literature
by Lauren Chater
Published by Simon & Schuster
on November 1st 2018
Source: Simon & Schuster
This gorgeous, whimsical gift hardback celebrates beloved works of literature in the shape of beautiful iced biscuits. Feast your eyes on 60 mouth-watering classics in full colour from Jane Austen and Mary Shelley to Tolkien and F. Scott Fitzgerald, modern masterpieces by Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman, Geraldine Brooks and Melissa Ashley, and beloved children’s tales by Dr Seuss and J.K. Rowling.
With all the tender love and care of a true book lover, author and baker extraordinaire Lauren Chater shows you how to translate your favourite books to the plate – and start making your very own sweet morsels of edible art. Filled with beautiful photographs and insider tips on achieving cookie nirvana, now you can have your books and eat them too.
I’ve not read Lauren Chater’s very popular novel The Lace Weaver. Chater’s blog (and some of her social media profiles) are named The Well-Read Cookie, and she certainly puts her money where her errr… blog-name is in this delightful book of biscuits. Yes, BISCUITS. Or cookies. If you’re American.
Chater includes recipes and pointers in the back (for the biscuits / cookies and the icing) and then shares very creative literary treats including everything from The Great Gatsby to Stephen King’s IT, to Sense and Sensibility, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, Green Eggs and Ham… and I could go on and on. So, there’s something for ALL of the family. Perfect for a party or bookclub, or just something quirky to serve visitors or the kids for afternoon tea.
And never fear as they’re not like the birthday cakes you see on Pinterest requiring postgraduate degrees in molecular biology and architectural design in order to piece it all together. In fact, The Great Gatsby cookies (above) could be made with Milk Arrowroot biscuits, iced. *insert thumbs up here* #notadomesticgoddess
This would make a lovely present for readers and / or bakers. Or better still, those who enjoy both!
Well Read Cookies by Lauren Chater was published by Simon & Schuster Australia.
And yes… ‘whimsical’ seems to be the word du jour for this time of year. Of course you’re also welcome to search through ALL of the books I’ve reviewed here to find something your loved ones might like.
I received these books from the publishers for review purposes.