What, if any, memorable or special book have you ever gotten as a present? Birthday or otherwise. What made it so notable? The person who gave it? The book itself? The “gift aura?”
I love getting books as gifts and I get them a lot. I usually pick the book these days, though, and specifically ask the giver for that book, or I give them a list. I’d love if I got surprised a bit more, especially since my entire catalog is now up on LT so you can check if I’ve got or read something, but it’s hard and an extra step for people, rather than just having a list. I think my parents used to surprise me with books but I have too many for them to do it now so they have a list to pick from. I particularly remember a few of the Harry Potter books in hardcover one Christmas that I was very happy about.
I think the last books that I received as a surprise were from my boyfriend. We’d only just met and I’d never been to England, but he knew I liked to read, so he sent me a Red Dwarf book. I love Red Dwarf now, but I hadn’t seen it at the time, so that wasn’t what made it special. It’s because he wrote in it, before he knew I hate when books are written in. I like this one though because it’s the only one I have inscribed to me, except for books signed by authors. I don’t think I’d like many more of them, given the purist that I am, but I like my one example. He also sent me one of my duplicates, Abhorsen by Garth Nix. I don’t mind that I had it and had already read it, I liked that he went out and got something he thought I’d like. No one does that because I’ve read practically everything they’d think of (as you can see by this example), but it was sweet. I don’t think he quite realized the extent of my reading and/or library at the time.
Overall, I think I’d like to continue dictating what books I receive as gifts, but I do like the occasional surprise, especially if the giver has a look at my LT to see what I have first!