Books are among my favorite items to gift because even if someone is not a voracious reader, they will still most likely appreciate a gorgeous coffee table book to page through (I intentionally selected a broad range of books). This gift guide will be the only in my 2020 series that is intended to span generations, with offerings from birth to, well, OLD. There are still other ways this book gift guide is not like most others you will read. The selections on this list are all from small publishing companies, first-time authors, or historically excluded groups, all of whom have released incredible work in 2020.
“THE ELEVATOR” BY YAEL FRANKEL
A mom friend of mine recently launched a niche publishing house, Tapioca Stories, and both selections offered by Tapioca are among the most adorable children’s books I have ever read. Tapioca Stories aims to bring Latin American soul to the American child’s storybook experience. If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that we all need to broaden our horizons, and a Tapioca story is the perfect way to expose your child to different cultural experiences. Tapioca’s mission statement translates beautifully into their texts: “We believe that exposing children to new perspectives early on can encourage them to grow into more empathic, perceptive, and thoughtful adults.” (ages 3+) $20 USD
“BLOOM WILD” BY BARI J. ACKERMAN
If you’ve been following me for a bit, you probably already know that Bari J. is my absolute FAVORITE human being, artist, and influencer. What you may NOT know, is that Bari released her first book, “Bloom Wild,” in early 2020 and it is everything we dreamed it would be and more. “Bloom Wild” not only lets us visit Bari’s uniquely beautiful brain in the text, but the images are also a dreamy escape from reality. If 2020 has you dying to visit a worldly Eden, you can do exactly that in “Bloom Wild.” $22 USD
“ONCE I WAS YOU” BY MARIA HINOJOSA
I just bought this newly released novel by award-winning journalist, Maria Hinojosa so I can’t offer my personal review quite yet, but rave endorsements from Lin-Manuel Miranda and Gloria Steinem were enough for me to click “Buy Now.” Hinojosa is a highly respected Latinx journalist telling a critically important immigration story, one that appears to elucidate the origins of the socio-political cataclysm that has torn at the very foundations of our democracy. An eye-opener for your….well, for everyone. $21 USD
“ANTIRACIST BABY” BY IBRAM X. KENDI
Because it’s never too early to begin lessons in antiracism. Ibram X. Kendi is an award-winning author offering this adorably-illustrated book that carries a powerful message through rhyme. Ages 0+ $7 USD
“WILD INTERIORS” BY HILTON CARTER
In my first gift guide, I erroneously mentioned that Hilton Carter’s new book, “Wild Interiors,” will not be released until 2021. Despite my confusion regarding whether the year 2020 even happened, Carter’s book was indeed released this year. Carter not only possesses a masterful green thumb, he also creates incredibly stunning interiors, using his green babies as the focal points of his designs. $19 USD
“HIDDEN FIGURES” BY MARGOT LEE SHETTERLY
“Hidden Figures” is one of my and my seven-year-old daughter’s favorite movies, and I was so excited to discover the story is now readable in a text for 4-8 year-olds. I quickly added this stunningly inspirational true story to my Amazon cart to gift to my daughters this year. A tale that should be read by every child, regardless of gender. $7 USD
“I TALK TO MY PLANTS” BY TRACEY HAIRSTON
Tracey Hairston of @mochagirlplace is yet another Influencer favorite of mine and she released her first book this year, “I Talk To My Plants: And Why You Should Too!” Hairston’s love of plants spans the generations, and if her luscious plant-filled home isn’t proof enough that she knows what a plant needs, this book will certainly convince you. Buy the book, and give @mochagirlplace a follow – her stunningly colorful and refreshingly original designs will give you inspiration and life through the dark days of winter. $10 USD
“MY LITTLE DRAGONFLY” BY JOSHUA KOESTER
I have a copy of “My Little Dragonfly” on the way, but I am so excited to get this small-shop book for my three-year-old daughter. A sweet story to share with the little ones this holiday season, and a great way to support a small business, too. $10 USD
I hope you were able to find a great book to purchase for your friends and family this holiday season, all while feeling good about supporting small businesses, publishing houses and authors.
Tune in Friday for my last gift guide, “For the Cook,” and then stop on by Saturday for a blog on how to wrap all your gifts in style.