When it comes to ideal gifts capable of pleasing even the toughest people on your list, you really can’t beat a book, and with good reason. Books can accomplish anything. They can spirit you away to another time and place. They can thrill you, enlighten you, frighten you, or delight you. Best of all, books allow us a golden opportunity to learn new things or see familiar things from intriguing new angles.
That said, books – especially the informative kind – are always the right gift choice no matter who is on your list this holiday season. This is especially the case if you’re buying for an adventurous traveler, a dyed-in-the-wool foodie, or a history lover. Let us count the ways!
For Travel Enthusiasts
If you have travel lovers in your life, then you definitely know it. Not only do their passports bear an impressive collection of stamps, but their luggage is extremely well used. They always seem to be planning their next road trip, weekend jaunt, or big voyage. In fact, you could say they aspire to be like Anthony Bourdain!
Feed their wanderlust by considering some of the following options. Look for selections that are sure to inspire, instruct, or advise in a way that will enrich the inner life of any avid travel enthusiast.
When it comes to getting the absolute most out of a given destination, especially one you’re seeing for the first time, you can’t beat a good guidebook. Guidebooks can help you get more out of a vacation by bringing you up to speed on local history, regional legends, insider tips, and more. They take the guesswork out of deciding what local dishes to sample, which landmarks you should hit, and how to experience life the way the locals do.
Treat the travelers in your life to a guidebook on a location they’ve always wanted to visit. Buy them one on their hometown to help them see a familiar place in a whole new way. Help them discover a million new things to appreciate about this wonderful country of ours. Once you hear their travel stories, you’re be enriched by their adventures as well!
Transportation History Books
Are the travelers in your life just as interested in how people get from place to place as they are in the destinations themselves? Have they always been interested in cars, planes, trains, or boats? Some expert-penned volumes on transportation history could be just the ticket.
Treat your travel enthusiasts to a closer look at maritime history books on famous seaports, historically significant American coastal locations, or noteworthy historic events involving boats and sea travel. Grant them a closer look at the origins of the American rail industry or the rise of America’s various regional trolley systems. Peruse volumes about automotive history, aviation history, and more to find the perfect gift that addresses their interests.
Hotel and Resort History Books
As any seasoned traveler will tell you, deciding where to go and what to do when you get there is only part of what goes into planning a great trip. It’s just as important to choose carefully when it comes to where to stay. Grant your world travelers a fascinating glimpse into some of America’s most iconic hotels, residences, and resorts with dedicated volumes that explore them all.
Browse volumes that cover niche topics like Seattle’s most historic hotels, the missions of Southern California, or the famous presidential homes of Virginia. Trace the rich backstory of Asheville’s famous Biltmore estate or the glittering hotels of Florida’s golden age. Each volume is an intimate, thought-provoking look at hospitality that your favorite travel lover won’t forget anytime soon.
Travel related guidebooks and history books make great bundle gifts to present in tandem with items like cruise tickets, luggage, and more. Just pick a destination and let your fingers do the walking!
For History Buffs
If you know dyed-in-the-wool history buffs, you most certainly want to engage their interests. They’re the people who always seem to know the answers to every history question on trivia night. They always seem to have an interesting anecdote to share about the places you go together. They most definitely have a healthy collection of history books on everything from the Civil War, to Ancient Greece, to the nomadic tribes of Africa.
So, what do you get for the history lovers that already seem to know everything? Try regional history books to treat them to rare and poignant looks into their favorite events from a local point of view, of course! Many lovers of general history never quite make it to that concentrated, in-depth level … but, once they do, they can’t believe they didn’t go exploring down that avenue a lot sooner. Help them get there with thoughtful gift choices this holiday season!
Ethnic History Books
Do your recipients take great pride in their Latino, Italian, Jewish, or Swedish heritage? Have they been more interested in the historic contributions of African Americans lately, thanks to causes like Black Lives Matter? Would they love a chance to get to know their community better by exploring the backstories of immigrant populations in the area? Collections in ethnic history is sure to have something to suit them.
Browse intimate, informative volumes on multiple heritage groups – everything from Native American, to Middle Eastern, to German. Trace the ethnic heritage of any region in America, big or small. Even discover volumes on ethnic contributions to various industries throughout history.
Paranormal History Books
Do the history buffs in your life also harbor an addiction to Ghost Hunters? Do they love imaginative, spine-tingling tales of ghosts and the paranormal? Would their wildest fantasy involve contacting the spirit of Benjamin Franklin or George Washington and talking about history for hours? You’ll definitely want to check out our expansive collection of haunted history books.
Discover books on the paranormal background of some of America’s most notoriously haunted cities and towns, including but not limited to New Orleans, Chattanooga, Tombstone, and Birmingham. Treat your recipients to detailed dedicated volumes on the haunted history of their own hometown. Find out about the legacies of multiple American battlegrounds, hotels, lighthouses, and more – all reported to be haunted. It’s a look at history like nothing your favorite history lovers have ever experienced before.
Industry History Books
American history is about so much more than just the big events like wars, conquests, and other events that caused sweeping change. America is also all about concepts like work ethic, innovation, invention, and industry. That said, no exploration of our nation’s history could be considered complete without a detour into retail and manufacturing history.
Treat the history lovers in your life to a closer look at the origins of America’s biggest industries, including but not limited to automotive, textile, and rail. Indulge them in a little armchair travel through the steel factories of Detroit, America’s very first department stores, or the stomping grounds of Rosie the Riveter herself. They’ll love you for showing them an entirely new side of the America they only thought they knew.
For the Culinary Inclined
If there’s one area of interest that is on the rise in a major way these days, it’s food culture. People of all ages and from all walks of life aren’t just branching out when it comes to the foods they eat and cook. They’re becoming increasingly interested in culinary history, restaurant history, and the origins of regional cuisine.
Treat the food enthusiasts in your life to regional history and local interest books that can’t help but enhance their interest in what they love best. They’ll love you for it!
Naturally, any foodies already have an extensive collection of recipes and cookbooks. Browsing all the vibrant cookbooks available today is guaranteed to bring something new to the table. Explore a fascinating look at the incredible Zora Neale Hurston and her collection to Florida cuisine with a stunning volume packed with recipes, remedies, and informational tidbits. Take intimate journeys into niche subjects like Austin breakfast tacos, South Carolina barbecue, or the origins of culinary giants like Burger Chef.
There is a wealth of cookbooks available on restaurants, diners, eateries, and cafes from across the nation. Some give a glimpse of famous establishments. Others are little-known or long-lost relics of the past. All are guaranteed to be fascinating to the foodies in your life. Treat them to a selection of books that address food culture in their favorite cities and watch their eyes light up this holiday season!
Farming and Agriculture History Books
Today’s foodies are about more than just eating, cooking, and enjoying food. They’re also increasingly interested in knowing where their food comes from and how it’s grown. If that sounds like the food lovers in your life, they might appreciate a selection of books on agricultural history.
Explore fascinating volumes on various regional industries, including but not limited to the apple industry in California, the gold rice industry of South Carolina, and the lobster industry of Cape Ann. Help your foodies trace the origins of their favorite ingredients – everything from apricots, to abalone, to maple sugar. Give them a golden opportunity to get to know their own hometown better with a closer look at the niche farming industries that helped put the area on the map.
Books on the History of Beer and Wine
Many foodies aren’t just interested in food, meals, and dining. The ones who are truly serious also know that nothing puts the finishing touch on a delicious meal quite like the right cocktail, beer, or wine. If you know an amateur mixologist or simply someone who takes the art of wine selection super seriously, a regional interest book on beer, wine, or spirits might be in order.
Do your recipients really know their stuff when it comes to the best American wines? They’ll adore a dedicated volume on Napa County’s most noteworthy historic wineries. Do they secretly dream of opening up their own brewery one day? Stoke the fires of their imagination with a volume on the place that wrote the book on beer – Cincinnati! Know someone that swears by a good Kentucky bourbon? He or she would be over the moon for a collection of rare vintage postcards of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.
Spend an afternoon at the corner bookstore or your favorite online seller and discover satisfying books for everyone on your list. Engage the passion of the knowledge lovers in your life this holiday season and give them gifts to inspire and enrich their lives. Explore the possibilities today!