LOUISE PENNY’S

A Return to Three Pines: How the Light Gets In

A Return to Three Pines: How the Light Gets In

Listen to the excerpt

As we think about the holiday season in How the Light Gets In, we think about some of our favorite holiday gifts: books! 

Do you give books as gifts? What are some of your favorite books you’ve received as presents?

Discussion on “A Return to Three Pines: How the Light Gets In”

I give every baby born in our family an initialed, canvas tote bag — and then new books to refill it as they age.

All of my Grandchildren know that Nana won’t buy candy and most of the time won’t buy many games ….but…… they learned at an early age that Nana Would buy as many books as they wanted! So now Book Stores are the only stop we make and have a wonderful time discussing and buying!!! Making many memories!

I love giving books, and have started giving them already to my first great granddaughter, born in January. Her parents read to her.

I believe no gift is more intimate than a book. I let my grandkids select their own when young. Then I begin contributing to their interests – astronomy, feminism, politics. For adult family and close friends, I love giving books.

My grandchildren and great nieces/nephews always know what is in the present: BOOKS! It is all I give to them for any occasion. Thankfully they are all delighted and have the love of reading instilled within them by their parents.

The very best time I had pre-pandemic was a holiday book exchange. A friend and I were chatting about books at her restaurant. We both thought it would be fun to use the restaurant one night when it was closed to host a book exchange and potluck supper. We ate, drank and had a night of great conversations. No one was to buy a book, but bring something they had read and would exchange. Several friends brought many books and the leftovers were set out for her customers to take. Reminded me a bit of the dinners in 3 Pines.

“When I was a kid” is not a sentence. It is a dependent clause, floating about, irritating purists—every time they (I) reread the text.

What is Christmas without lots of books under a tree? While shaking the package, the recipient usually says, “Hmm, I wonder what this is?” There is always the new Louise Penney under the tree for my older daughter that she then passes on to me.

I, unfortunately, am part of a family, that does not read. So one ever considers books as presents for me. My father was a great reader, but he passed over forty years ago. And his passion for reading seems to have only passed to me. It is rather strange, since I have multiple bookcases in every room of my house. But maybe it is for the best. I might receive books that I would rather not own.

A favorite of mine to gift at Christmas is Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales”.

My very favorite book was given to me by my mother: ‘Christy’ by Catherine Marshall. I was 15 and read it as often as I could. I still have the paperback book, tucked away.
I do like giving books. I usually chose one that I have enjoyed over the past year. A History/ Archeological themed book, about some new discovery!
I like to receive books as gifts, from family members or friends. Even it I don’t read it right away, I will, eventually.

In our family I give books for every occasion – birthdays, Easter baskets, Father’s Day, Christmas…. Over the years I know individuals favorite authors and it’s always so good to research a special interest and find a great book. Some are kept as treasures. Others are circulated with other interested readers in the family or donated to the local library sale

It’s always our local indie bookstores for us. My husband and I are dedicated observers of the Icelandic Christmas custom, Jollabokafloda. We give each other books and spend Christmas Day reading. For our daughter and her husband, we hand over the box of books we have accumulated from judging various book competitions, and they can take as many books as they find interesting.

My library, at which I volunteer, celebrated Jollabokafloda this year. We were closed to patrons, but took books out to their cars that they had put on hold along with their gift book so no one had to spend the pandemic without something to read.

I LOVE to gift books ….and…to receive them . During Covid lockdown , my ‘ Covid gifts ‘ have been things that I could find in the grocery store AND gifts chosen from within my home , specially picked for each recipient . The basket ALWAYS includes a book from my collection of favourites . Recently I gave my Granddaughter the book Pollyanna . It was my Granddaughter’s 11th birthday and the book was previously inscribed to her Great Grandma ( my Mother-in-law ) on her 11th birthday . I loved the story of that little tenacious child and her zest for living and felt it was quite appropriate for the current pandemic climate .

I have always been a reader and my books are my favoured possessions. Reading to my children and then my grandson was pure delight. I have, over the years, said no to toys or games they asked for but never ever to a book. I considered the cost of a book an investment in their futures and it has paid off. My greatest pleasure now is having them recommend new authors and genres for me to enjoy.

I give one baby book to newborns along with a series to start building their personal library – usually the Chronicles of Narnia.
I put the books in a bag I make so they have a book bag for carrying library books.

As a retired early childhood teacher and librarian, I always give books to newborn babies and very young children. For local adults and older kids, I give a gift card to our local bookstore.

I always gave a few books to my son for Christmas and birthday. We share similar interests and had lots of interesting conversation after reading them. Now he is an adult and I receive and give books to him and to his wife. I also give books to my great nieces and nephews instead of toys (which they get plenty of anyway).

I have no children of my own, but have 12 great nieces and nephews. The tradition I started with them is to give a pop-up book every Christmas. Our favorites are by Robert Sabuda. Beautiful books! The card attached always says “WICWAB”. The books editor for our local newspaper said that was a tradition in her family and I thought it was wonderful. If you haven’t figured it out, it stands for “What Is Christmas Without A Book”.

Sabuda did a wonderful book with Tomie dePoala called “Brava, Strega Nona!” I’m keeping it for my granddaughter. Tomie dePoala write such wonderful stories for kids of all ages. Robert Sabuda is just amazing.

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