There’s no love quite like the love of literature, whether you’re addicted to celebrity memoirs or just can’t resist browsing a local bookstore on the weekend. Since bibliophiles, by nature, tend to be quite passionate about books, it can be especially hard to find the perfect holiday gift that meets their level of enthusiasm for all things reading. That’s why we curated a list of no-fail items any avid reader will cherish. We found practical but special items that will elevate their reading experience and included products at various price points. We even have small items you can include as a stocking stuffer if that’s what you’re looking for.
The best gifts for book lovers in 2023
To find presents bookworms will love for the holidays, we included items Select editors have personally used before along with highly rated products online. We have functional items, like book lights and page markers, on our list as well as ambient accessories that will make their reading experience better.
With a 4.7-star average rating from more than 105,000 reviews on Amazon, this book light is a must for any bookworm in your life. They can wrap it around their neck so their hands are free to hold their favorite hardcover or e-reader. It has three temperature modes — yellow, warm white and cool white — in addition to having three brightness levels, according to the brand. It has a narrow beam angle so it shouldn’t disturb other people around the reader, which is especially helpful when reading in bed at night; plus it has adjustable arms so they can find their ideal angle to optimize comfort, according to Glucocusent.
Papier makes some of our favorite stationery, and this reading journal is no exception. It’s a great tangible alternative to Goodreads or online book tracking services for any reader who’s looking to minimize their digital footprint. There’s space to review books, write wishlists and monitor books you’ve lent out or borrowed, plus there are journal prompts that double as book club questions. It also comes with a list of book recommendations curated by the Papier team.
Juniper redesigns classic books for modern bookshelves. The brand sells collections of books with new covers that double as a work of art on a bookshelf. Some of their collections include the “Harry Potter” series, “Bridgerton,” “Twilight” and more. I’ve long wanted a set from Juniper, and when the brand sent me their vintage cookbook and cocktail set, I was completely blown away. They’re absolute showstoppers and instant conservation pieces. Since the collections can be quite expensive (prices vary based on what you select), you can opt for a “jackets only” set if you prefer to buy covers for books your recipient already has.
This LED light, which has a 4.8-star average rating from more than 130 reviews on MoMA Design Store, is as much a functional gift as it is a conversation starter or piece of decor. The accordion-like design resembles the pages of a book when spread open to 180 degrees. The sculptural, portable lamp has a pleated interior that’s made of water-resistant Tyvek, according to the brand. Conversely your recipient can close it completely, and it will look like a regular hardcover book that’s made out of laser-cut wood, according to MoMA Design Store. It comes with a leather hanging strap for hanging, and it can also be mounted on metal. The light can last up to eight hours on a full charge, according to the brand. (It’s rechargeable via a micro-USB cable.)
Designer Jane Mount creates illustrations of collections of best selling books for avid readers to display. This pigment ink print features popular young adult books — like Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Betty Smith’s “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,” and J.D. Salinger’s “The Catcher in the Rye,” to name a few — though there are more than 50 prints with other categories to choose from including one with romance novels, books from famous Black authors, popular science fiction books and more. You can choose from three sizes and various custom fit frames that have a white mat and UV-shielding plexiglass, according to the brand.
Leatherology is one of my absolute favorite places to buy gifts — I love that you can add a monogram or personalization element to many of their items. This bookweight comes in eight leather color options and weighs 0.44 pounds, so it’s strong enough to hold open heavy coffee table books, according to the brand. I always find weights especially useful to prop open cookbooks so you don’t have to touch pages with messy fingers. It’s also great for readers who want to display specific pages of photography or design books around their space.
Every book lover knows nothing beats a cozy reading session at home. These literary-inspired candles help create a peaceful, snug environment to do just that. This one is F. Scott Fitzgerald-inspired and has notes of mandarin, jasmine, amber, smoke and sandalwood, though there are other book- and author-inspired candles to choose from. Each candle is made from 100% premium soy wax that’s hand-poured in Santa Monica, CA, and has a woven cotton wick, according to the brand.
This tree-inspired shelf has a 4.3-star average rating from more than 1,700 reviews on Amazon and is the ideal gift for those with a large book collection. The case, which weighs just over 12 pounds, has nine open shelves and is made from engineered wood with a high gloss finish, according to the brand. It also comes with an anti-falling accessory that bolts the shelf to the wall to prevent it from toppling over around children or pets, according to Topfurny.
These metal darts, which have a 4.8-star average rating from more than 960 reviews on Amazon, are the perfect stocking stuffer. Your giftee can place them next to specific lines they want to remember or can use them as a way to mark their spot in their book. Each one slides on and off pages easily and shouldn’t damage your recipient’s books, according to the brand.
McNally Jackson is my favorite bookstore in New York City — and as an avid reader myself, I’m always looking for book merch so I can show off my love of reading to the world. This classic unisex tee has slim fit and a 60/40 blend of cotton and poly fabric to give it a soft fit, according to the site’s description. It’s available in sizes XS-XL.
This handmade personalized stamp makes it easy for book readers to lend out their favorite novels and memoirs. All they need to do is stamp this personalized embosser on an interior page of the book so anyone who borrows it will remember who the title belongs to. It’s also a sweet way to make their own books feel more special — whether they intend to lend them out or not. With 24 designs to choose from, you can customize the phrases or names you want to add to the embosser, which has a 5-star rating from more than 29,900 reviews on Etsy.
I always had trouble finding bookends that fit my decor style, until I discovered these. The colors and shapes put a modern, minimal spin on bookends, which are a true staple in any book lover’s space. They’re made of powder coated steel, according to the brand, and they are available in five different colors and in three different shapes and sizes (small, medium and large).
Give your favorite bibliophile access to the best new reads with this subscription gift. At the start of every month, Book of the Month will curate a list of five to seven early releases of new hardcovers or audiobooks for your recipient to choose from. Your giftee can also choose to skip a month if none of the options speak to them, or if they’re still reading a book from previous months, according to the brand. Popular previous choices include “Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow,” “Killers of the Flower Moon,” “Swing Time,” and “Normal People,” and they offer books across genres including romance and historical fiction.
Using a Kindle single-handedly changed the way I read. I was always hesitant to go the e-reader route since I love collecting hardcovers, but after trying a Kindle there’s truly no turning back. (I was gifted this Paperwhite from Amazon, though I had previously bought and used the brand’s standard Kindle model on my own years prior.) The Paperwhite is incredibly lightweight so it’s very easy to bring anywhere; I constantly have it in my bag no matter where I’m going. The best part, in my experience, is the non-glare screen so you can read it outside in bright sunlight, unlike other laptops or tablets I’ve tried. I also rarely have to charge it, which is extremely convenient. (The battery can last for up to 10 weeks, as detailed on the brand’s website.) You can also pair it with an Audible subscription and Bluetooth earbuds, so your recipient can listen to books in addition to reading them, according to Amazon.
This popular page turner, which has a 4.5-star average rating from more than 5,500 reviews on Amazon, does exactly what its name implies: digitally turns pages for readers of Kindles, iPhones, iPads and Android tablets via a remote, according to the brand. To use it, your giftee will clip it onto their device, and simply use its USB-charge-enabled remote control to turn pages when they’re ready. That way they can get cozy under blankets or read while on the treadmill and move the book forward with just the click of a button. The goal is to let people read more freely, according to the brand.
This interactive poster is perfect for budding readers or anyone who loves a fun reading challenge. Your recipient can scratch off each title on the poster as they read them. It includes classic novels like “Pride and Prejudice” and “The Color Purple” as well as more modern titles like “A Game of Thrones” and “The Secret History.”
Why trust Select?
Lindsay Schneider is an editor for NBC Select has covered the lifestyle and book space for 6+ years. She also writes and edits Select’s weekly newsletter, The Selection as well as our monthly editors’ picks series. For this gift guide, she included her personal favorite reading items as well as highly rated items that will delight book lovers.