Books = Gifts

So, there’s been lots of gloomy-doomy news about the publishing industry. I work for a small university press, and I can confirm that while our yearly sales are still up a little from 2007, November sales were down. And returns were way, way up.  As someone who loves books and hopes to get published someday, the thought of people not buying books makes me sad.
I’ve decided to become a bookpusher. A word-dealer. An elf of edification.
My dad? One Western and one crime novel. My mom? A holiday romance. My sisters? Um, can’t say in case they read this, but they’re both getting a book in addition to the other requests they’ve made. I’m giving books to…let’s count…at least 5 friends. 3 different people are getting copies of The Disreputable History of Frankie-Landau Banks. I would give everyone I know Hunger Games, too, but I was so excited after I read it that I’ve already passed my copy around. Still, that’s 10 book-presents off the top of my head.
And that’s just a start. I’m taking a trip to Borders next week to browse around. I may very well give a few more, but they’re ones I haven’t read yet myself. I need to read the first few pages first, get a feel for them. It’s a delicate matchmaking process, book-buying.
And then there are my own wishlists. From my mom: a spatula, some Victoria’s Secret sweaters, two yoga DVDs, and 7 books (Book of a Thousand Days and Goose Girl by Shannon Hale, Burned and Identical by Ellen Hopkins, Let It Snow by John Green & co, Wake by Lisa McMann [which I’ve already read but liked so much I want to own]). From my mother-in-law: a nonstick cake pan, the board game Colosseum, a Sephora scent sampler, and five more books (The Adoration of Jemma Fox by Mary Pearson [reread], Impossible by Nancy Werlin, The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint, The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp, and Testimony by Anita Shreve). From my dad: two board games (Clue and Ticket to Ride) and four books (The Disreputable History for ME!!!, Madapple by Christina Meldrum, What I Saw & How I Lied by Judy Blundell, and Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson). My families are very generous. And Amazon makes it so easy. I suspect that I’ll get most of them.
I feel good about my contribution to the economy.
And if you, like me, cannot possibly get enough books for yourself or others, no matter how towering your TBR pile may be, you should check out the Feast of Awesome’s giveaway. Go over and leave a comment by midnight for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to Powell’s! And while you’re there, check out their books, which you’ll probably want to buy in 2009.

And, hey…what books are on your wishlist?

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