Giving books as gifts to kids during the holidays is a wonderful idea, but can also be overwhelming, considering how many options there are these days. An obvious first choice is to ask the child what books he or she wants, but that's not always an option. So, here are some things to consider, along with a couple of recommendations, when it comes to selecting the perfect book.

Consider the purpose of the book. A couple of books my children and I have recently read appeared at first glance to be too easy for them to read, but are perfect picture books to appreciate and cherish for years to come. Dear Girl, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, is one of those books. Much like the Dr. Seuss classic, Oh, The Places You'll Go!, this book gives the advice you want to make sure stays with your daughter as she grows up, in a short and sweet format. Although Rosenthal died in 2017, her husband and her daughter wrote a companion book, Dear Boy, published in 2019, which is just as good and would make a great gift for that special boy in your life.

You could also go the other direction and get a book that may be above what your child is able to read right now. For example, I read From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler with my child before she was able to read and understand it herself. Since I was reading it to her, I was there to help her with any misunderstandings she may have had as we read it, since it was published before both of us were born. Think of books you would like to read together, either books or series you enjoyed when you were younger, or books your child may want to read, but not be able to do so independently yet.

A great way to get a reluctant child into reading is to find a series to get hooked into, so the holidays are a perfect time to buy that first book in the series. One great series that both my son and daughter enjoy are the 13-Story Treehouse books by Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton. These books follow two main characters who have built a treehouse with 13 levels of extreme antics, including shark tanks and marshmallow shooters. Each book in the series increases the number of stories in the treehouse. Right now, the latest one is 117 stories! Imagine what kind of adventures they can come across in a treehouse that tall!

A great resource to find that special book for your child could be their teacher. Often, teachers are reading aloud a book in class that your child may want a copy of or may want another title written by that author. Both of my kids have books on their bookshelf that are there because they first heard about it at school. Teachers may also be able to tell you what types of books your child gravitates toward in class, which could give you some gift ideas as well.

Giving books for gifts during the holidays can create lifetime memories for you and your child.

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