Tips for Buying Book Gifts

You love to read, you love getting books for presents, and you want to give them as presents too! But how to select the “just-right” book present for the kids and teens in your life? Here are some tips!

Why Book Gifts?

Books can be shared.

Books for little ones are meant to be read aloud. Chapter books can be shared as a family read-aloud, bringing reader and child close together.

They show you care.

Everyone appreciates a gift that was picked just for them.  Selecting a book that matches the interests of the recipient shows that you want to give them something they will like.

Books are a gift that keeps on giving.

Not only are they shared, but they are also re-read and even so loved that they’re given away so others can love them too.

Books are easy to wrap!

Should we have listed this one first?


When you find that just-right book, it is a treasure the recipient wants to keep forever. It becomes more than “just” a book. Now it holds memories and evokes feelings. A treasure they carry with them always. Plus, they will always remember it came from you.

Whatever the occasion, finding that just-right books for the youngsters in our lives is a fun challenge, especially if you don’t know what they already like! These tips can help.

How to Pick Books as Gifts

Ask about their interests.

Parents and guardians often know what their kids like. Don’t ask about what books they like (though that’s a good question); ask more generally about the kinds of the things they rush to spend time on. 

Screen-related interests can be helpful too!

Don't let a "screen time" answer deter you. Video games, movies, television, social media, etc.. If they gravitate to it, there is a book for that. Maybe its the genre (comics) or theme (reality TV). The "It" is easier to find than you think. 

Talk to your local bookseller or librarian.

Once you know what they like, talk to an expert. Not only can these folks help you. They will guide you to options based on your recipient's interests; they can recommend books for family enjoyment; and also let you know about highly popular authors.

Think beyond the printed page.

Audiobooks are a great gift option, especially for readers still finding their reading feet. They are also portable, allowing young readers to enjoy a book while traveling.

what to look for book gift

Make it a Combo

Still worried? Want to hedge your bets? Create a gift that pairs a book with something else. Building a "book package" is great fun, adds something a little extra, and can make the gift even more memorable.

The concept is simple: complement the book with something that is related to it. It can be a "thing" or an experience, and it doesn't have to cost extra. We have a full collection of starter ideas on our Book Pairings page.


Need help with matching your readers' age with formats and genres? Check out our handy chart.