While video games, Blu-rays, and toys are common gifts to give for the holiday season, nothing brings joy like giving and receiving a good book. This year, there were lots of interesting and enjoyable novels and novelty books from the Star Wars, Star Trek, Game Of Thrones, Doctor Who, and Marvel universes, as well as fun selections for the geek in your life (like a geek’s guide to dating, for instance).
Check out here below our Holiday Geek Gift Guide 2013 for Books and eBooks for our favorite holiday gift picks for this year.
And with ebook readers becoming more and more possible, there’s now a way to gift someone an ebook – details are at the bottom of the guide, along with delivery times for items purchased and shipped through Amazon.com.
Also, if you’re purchasing physical books from Amazon on December 1, 2013, use promo code BOOKDEAL upon checkout to get 30% off any one (1) book (restrictions apply – see the “Special Offers” area of the respective product pages).
A coffee-table book on the making of the third film of the original star Wars trilogy, Return Of The Jedi, for its 30th anniversary year, includes unseen artwork, script excerpts, exclusive photos, on-set interviews, as well as anecdotes, recollections, and revelations from the people who worked closely on the film.
A Very Klingon Khristmas (Star Trek) By Paul Ruditis (Author), Patrick Faricy (Illustrator) Gallery Books Hardcover | Kindle
Nothing says Christmas like Klingon! The Klingons have already co-opted A Christmas Carol, now they infiltrate the holiday once more in this 32-page illustrated storybook, that tells the story — in rhyming verse — of the birth of the warrior Kahless and the celebration of Klingon “Khristmas” on Qo’noS and across the Star Trek universe. This is a great gift to give for Christmas to Trek fans – you could even make the reading of this story an annual family tradition (I know I will!).
Doctor Who: The Vault: Treasures from the First 50 Years By Marcus Hearn HarperCollins Hardcover
This is an official Doctor Who book, which gives the full and official story of the long-running science fiction television series, beginning with the show’s pre-production memos dating back to the 1960s to behind-the-scenes material from the most recent season. This 320-page oversized full-cover hardcover tome also interviews with cast and crew, photos, design sketches, and more.
William Shakespeare’s Star Wars By Ian Doescher Quirk Books Paperback | Kindle
Adorably subtitled Verily, A New Hope, William Shakespeare’s Star Wars is a mash-up by Ian Doescher that takes the story of the first, original Star Wars film, and spins it as if it were a Shakespeare novel, with all thous and thees and thys you’ll ever need. With lines like “What light through yonder flashing sensor breaks?” and “Forsooth, a great disturbance in the Force,” you’ll Star Wars fans will have great fun reading this interpretation.
Star Wars Origami: 36 Amazing Paper-folding Projects from a Galaxy Far, Far Away…. By Chris Alexander Workman Publishing Company Paperback
Star Wars Origami is a spot-on gift for the crafter – whether or not they love Star Wars. This is a 272-page large paperback book with 36 paper-folding projects with characters, ships, vehicles, and weapons from the entire Star Wars movie sage (both original trilogy and prequels). The index lists the projects included alphabetically and also by level of difficulty. The first part of the book teaches the basics of origami, with definitions, symbols, and instructions on basic folds and the basis for many projects given in the book. Younglings can make their own podracer and padawans can build their own C-3P0, while Jedi Knights and Masters can hone their craft by constructing a landspeeder, TIE Fighter, and Boba Fett’s ship Slave I. Good for ages 5 and up.
This bundle includes all five novels in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire fantasy saga — A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, A Dance with Dragons — which are the inspiration for the hit HBO television series Game Of Thrones.
From the man who gave us Heart-Shaped Box and Horns, as well as the comic book series Locke & Key, comes NOS4A2 (pronounced like Nosferatu), Joe Hill’s third full-length novel. In the story, Victoria McQueen has a gift of finding things and she’s able to transport to anywhere she needs to go when she rides her bicycle through a specific area. One day, Victoria “finds” Charles Talent Manx, a man who abducts children in his 1938 Rolls-Royce Wraith, which has the NOS4A2 vanity plate, and takes them outside the regular world to a terrifying place he calls “Christmasland.”
Doctor Sleep Hardcover | Kindle By Stephen King Simon and Schuster/Scribner
It’s been 36 years since the master of horror Stephen King’s The Shining novel was released, and now the author has decided to revisit the story with Doctor Sleep. In the new book, we find out what happened to Danny Torrance, the little boy from The Shining, now that he’s an adult and what has he been doing with this “special” abilities since his frightful stay at The Overlook Hotel. If you’ve never read The Shining, a new mass market paperback edition was released this yaer — the Kindle version of that edition is on sale right now for only $1.99.
The Wolves of Midwinter: The Wolf Gift Chronicles By Anne Rice Putnam Adult Hardcover | Kindle
She’s taken on witches, vampires, and even Jesus Christ, now Anne Rice has returned to her preternatural roots with The Wolf Gift Chronicles. The second book in the series, The Wolves of Midwinter, is a follow-up to 2012’s The Wolf Gift. This new Werewolves series follows a young reporter, Reuben Golding, who’s attacked by a beast thereby giving him “the wolf gift” and thrusting him into a whole new world of the supernatural with shapeshifters, ghosts, and immortals.
If you’re looking for more gifts for the Anne Rice fan in your life, there’s also a new Kindle bundle called The Complete Vampire Chronicles 12-Book Bundle (The Vampire Chronicles) which contains all 12 books of the author’s Vampire Chronicles, including the wildly popular, classic vampire novel that sparked it all, Interview With The Vampire. (See below for details on how to gift Kindle books.)
The Ocean at the End of the Lane: A Novel By Neil Gaiman HarperCollins Publishers Hardcover | Kindle
A Neil Gaiman selection always makes a great gift for your geeky friends and family. This year, the author released The Ocean at the End of the Lane, a fantasy adventure. A great idea for your gift recipient would be to also get them the audiobook for this, which Gaiman narrates and his readings are always a great treat. (See A Beginner’s Guide To Neil Gaiman for more titles to choose from.)
How to Speak Klingon: Essential Phrases for the Intergalactic Traveler (Star Trek) By Ben Grossblatt (Author), Alex Fine (Illustrator) Chronicle Books Hardcover
For the Star Trek fan in your life who has the movies and maybe is into the expanded universe books, this hardcover picture book is a great novelty gift that will help the recipient learn basic Klingon. The 24-page full-color audio phrasebook comes complete with an invaluable Klingon Pronunciation Guide and accompanying audio module so you’ll know what to say and how to say it if you find yourself with Klingons at a birthday party, restaurant, or movie theater.
I Saw Zombies Eating Santa Claus: A Breathers Christmas Carol By S.G. Browne Gallery Books Paperback | Kindle
Zombie fans will love this follow-up to Breathers: A Zombie’s Lament, the dark humor novel about Andy, a zombie who goes to an Undead Anonymous meeting after having difficulty adjusting to life after death. In this holiday sequel, Andy, after escapes from a zombie medical research facility, goes on the run during the holidays disguised in a Santa costume and meets a little girl who thinks he’s the real thing. A truly heartwarming holiday tale.
Star Trek Federation: The First 150 Years By David A. Goodman Titan Books Hardcover
This 167-page hardcover contains excerpts from Starfleet records and intergalactic intelligence, including James T. Kirk’s official biography, newly translated Klingon reports, information on the notorious villain Khan Noonien Singh. It includes field sketches, illustrations, and reproductions of historic pieces of art from across the Galaxy, along with over fifty excerpts from key Federation documents and correspondence, Starfleet records, and intergalactic intelligence.
Star Trek: The Art of Juan Ortiz by Juan Ortiz Titan Books Hardcover
What if every Star Trek: The Original Series episode was a movie event? What would the movie poster look like? This was the inspiration to develop a one-of-a-kind set of images for the series that launched a franchise. Artist Juan Ortiz has created unique retro-style art with the look of a 60s movie poster, comic book, pulp novel cover or advertisement, one each for all 80 episodes.
Star Trek: The Art of Juan Ortiz, collecting together 80 movie-style posters, one for each and every episode of Star Trek: The Original Series. The images feature retro-style art that recalls 1960s-era posters, pulp novel covers, comic books and advertisements.
Vader’s Little Princess By Jeffrey Brown Chronicle Books Hardcover
Vader’s Little Princess is the follow-up to Darth Vader and Son, the full-color illustrated picture book that humorously and heart-warmingly explored a “what if…” relationship between Darth Vader and his son Luke Skywalker as a toddler. Vader’s Little Princess, a 64-page hardcover picture book, centers on Luke’s twin sister, Leia, and new depicts a relationship between the Dark Lord of the Sith and his daughter, Princess Leia, as a sweet toddler with her hair in the famous buns, as well as in her rebellious teenage years.
As I’m sure you’ve noticed, there are a lot of tablets on the market right now. And choosing one can be a daunting task. If you’re like me, you want something durable and reliable but you don’t want to break the bank buying one. Luckily, Amazon has done a bang up job of creating the Kindle Fire HD line. Available in both 7″ and 8.9″ formats, these beauties have a dual core processor and can do anything you would expect from even more expensive brands. Video conferencing, internet surfing, movies, books – you name it and this baby can do it in style. There’s even a new HDX series for those that just have to keep up with the latest and greatest. Prices vary based on storage capacity and screen size. Plus, you can save a few bucks by getting the “special offers” versions that are advertisement supported! Check them out here, starting at $139!
Bringing together three different Star Trek incarnations — The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Titan — we have the newest crossover series for the Trekker (or Trekkie) in your life. Taking place over the course of two months and featuring the Typhon Pact as the antagonists, each novel in Star Trek: The Fall will tell its own story while at the same time being an integral part of a bigger plot line. The first four novels are all available right now with the last one, Star Trek: The Fall: Peaceable Kingdoms, coming out on New Year’s Eve 2013 for Paperback and Kindle.
Princesses Behaving Badly: Real Stories From History—Without the Fairy-Tale Endings By Linda Rodriguez McRobbie Quirk Books Paperback | Kindle
Disney likes to empower their princesses and give them the ability to overcome adversity, basically triumphing under any circumstances. The Brothers Grimm took a different tact and gave everything a more dangerous edge. But those are just stories. History has produced some very real, very dangerous ladies who make their movie and book counterparts seem lame by comparison. From Nazi spy to bloodthirsty killer, these women were not meek in any way. Heck, one of them even wore a mask of raw veal! You’ll find out all this and more in this little book of miniature biographies.
Possibly one of the greatest gifts you can give fantasy reader, this set is comprised of The Hobbit as well as all three books in The Lord Of The Rings series. Covering the journeys of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, as well as the other folks who made up the Fellowship of the Ring, this is a wondrous tale of high adventure that took years to complete. It’s an epic tale that has been called both flawless and superb. You may have seen the movies but until you’ve read the books, you have no true idea of how fantastic this series truly is. In my more than fifteen years working with books, no single series has ever been as popular as a gift during the holidays. But give the complete epic, because once they start reading it, the won’t want to stop.
Do you know someone that has trouble getting a date? Do they repel members of the opposite sex? Are they a geek or a nerd by society’s standards? Then this just might be the right gift for them! Chock full of useful information but surrounded by geeky pop culture references, this little self help book is made for the shy, the introverted, the nerdy! Don’t delay, get it today! It’s available starting December 3, 2013.
Iron Man Manual by Daniel Wallace Insight Editions Hardcover
Who doesn’t like Iron Man? Nobody, that’s who! This guide is the perfect gift for the dedicated fan of the movie franchise. Packed with loads of extras like Arc Reactor blueprints and tickets to the Stark World Expo, this is an awesome companion item. It even delves into each of Iron Man suits and details their specialties. Ever wonder what it was that S.H.I.E.L.D. had in their file on Tony Stark? Well, the file is in this book! Beautifully bound in red and black, this gorgeous hardcover retails for $50, but is currently discounted to under $32 at Amazon.
There exists a plethora of novels based around various Dungeons & Dragons worlds. And probably the most popular setting of all is the Forgotten Realms. With the coming of the next incarnation of D&D, we are able to bear witness to cataclysmic changes taking place in that world (as told by several of the best fantasy authors around). The Sundering is a 6-book series, with each book telling its own tale but still part of the whole overview of the changes in the Realms. The series will also help repair some of the damage previously caused by a prior timeline adjustment to the Realms. The first book is The Companions by R.A. Salvatore, featuring Drizzt Do’Urden. Next up is Paul S. Kemp‘s The Godborn, with Erevis Cale as the primary character. Third in the series is The Adversary from Erin M. Evans, Farideh being the main focus in this upcoming release.
These three hardcover novels will all be available before the holidays and will be a surefire way to please the fantasy reader in your life. The final three books will be released next year, so keep those in mind for upcoming gifting times, too!
It’s a story as old as time: Chubby IT guy — Roen — thinks he’s schizophrenic, but it turns out he actually has an alien in his brain. The alien belongs to the Tao, a species of creature that crash landed on Earth eons ago. Caught in between a raging civil war, Roen must turn himself into a badass hero in order to save Earth. Like I said, a story as old as time.
An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth : What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything By Chris Hadfield Hachette Book Group Hardcover | Paperback | Kindle
Yes, An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth: What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything is an insanely long title. But to be totally honest, Colonel Chris Hadfield can name his autobiography whatever the hell he wants. He’s spent around 4,000 hours in space, so yeah. Also, Hadfield once tossed a snake out of a plane that he was flying. He literally fought a snake on a plane.
You is a book about making video games. Well, no, that’s not really true. It’s about much more than that. Veiled as a book about working for a video game company, You examines where the pursuit of perfection will take you and the consequences that come with it.
Giving Kindle Books as Gifts
— You can gift Kindle books and set your gift to be delivered whenever you want to anyone with an email address. On the Product Page (on the top right side), click the button that reads “Give as a Gift.” From there you enter the recipient’s email address and note the date you’d like your gift to be delivered via email, and also include a personalized message. There’s also the option to have the gift emailed right to you that you can forward the gift email to the recipient yourself or print it out and personally deliver it to the recipient.
— You don’t actually need a Kindle device to read these ebooks. Books can be read on a Kindle or one of Amazon’s free reading apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows PC, Mac, Blackberry, and Windows Phone 7.
AMAZON SHIPPING INFORMATION
If you’re ordering through Amazon.com in the United States, here’s their ordering deadlines for delivery on or before Christmas Eve (12/24) for items in-stock shipped to physical addresses within the United States and marked “Ships from and sold by Amazon.com” or “Fulfilled by Amazon.com.”
Contiguous U.S. – Dec. 17: Free Shipping (non-Prime) – Dec. 18: Standard Shipping – Dec. 21: Two-Day Shipping – Dec. 23: One-Day Shipping – Dec. 24: Local Express Delivery – Dec. 25: Email and printable Amazon Gift Cards can be sent immediately, at any time
Remember, if all else fails, there’s also the Amazon.com Gift Card, you can have emailed to the recipient (arrives immediately) or you can print out the gift card at home and give it to the intended that way. If you order in enough time, you can get the physical gift card sent to you.