Thanksgiving is tomorrow (happy early Thanksgiving!), and in honor of what I think of as the start of the holiday season (today, when the cooking starts), I thought I’d make a nice list of books to buy for others or beg for yourself for whatever winter gift-giving holiday you celebrate (or you can just buy them for yourself, if there is no holiday). These books have no common theme except they all rock and you should read them all.

image I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone by Stephanie Kuehnert is “a painfully honest, raw, heart-wrenching story about a mother who is running from guilt and a daughter who just wants to bring her home.” I loved it. It’s great for music lovers, and just people who enjoy a good book.

image The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins is, in one word, awesome. It’s got something for everyone, and is definitely one of the best and most buzzed-about books of the year. If you haven’t read it yet, what are you waiting for?!

image Graceling by Kristin Cashore is another book that’s totally worthy of the buzz. It’s a fantasy with a strong heroine, great adventure, and interesting world. Buy this for fans of Tamora Pierce or Shannon Hale.


image The Spellman Files and Curse of the Spellmans, by Lisa Lutz, are fun mysteries that are great for either adults or teens looking for a hilarious, fun, but certainly not brain-killing read. They’re crazy and quirky, but still very relatable and real.

image The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart is “is a funny, bold, and irreverent novel sure to find many fans who are themselves not content with the established social order or the way the world sees them.” It is, in a word, brilliant, and it’s been out since the beginning of 2008, so if you haven’t yet read it–what is wrong with you?! If you have, remember to give it to the smart girls in your life who will appreciate Frankie.

image Good Enough by Paula Yoo is about a girl whose Korean parents put a lot of pressure on her to be perfect. Patti is a great character who’s easy to relate to, and Paula Yoo is a wonderful writer. This is an enjoyable read for anyone with a lot of pressure on them, whether self-imposed or from another source. Or, you know, just anyone who likes great books!

image Red: Teenage Girls In America Write On What Fires Up Their Lives Today, edited by Amy Goldwasser, is a book of personal essays by teenage girls in America, as the title suggests. There’s loads of fantastic stuff in here, and, yes, full disclosure, I am a contributor. It’s now out in paperback–easier on your wallet, and I love the new cover.

image Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six Word Memoirs By Writers Famous And Obscure is a book of six-word memoirs that will be enjoyable and relatable to just about anyone on your gift-giving list. One memoir is mine, too, so I certainly have a soft spot for this one!

And for the readers in your life, books aren’t the only appropriate gift–lots of teens would appreciate a magazine subscription to Teen Ink, too, which is a monthly magazine written by and for teens.

Which book are you buying for everyone on your list in an effort to spread the awesomeness? What are you begging for this holiday season? Leave your answers in the comments; I’m interested!