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Holiday Gift Guide

Holiday Gift Guide

Fiction books for adults | Nonfiction books for adults | Teens | Middle Grades | Early Chapter Books | Early Readers | Picture Books  

We hope you enjoy these titles suggested by our staff. Please consider purchasing your books at Northbrook's Book Bin, which has been serving the community for more than 50 years.

Fiction books for adults

The Adventures of Amina al-Sirafi by S.A. Chakraborty
In this tale of magic and mayhem on the high seas, a pirate comes out of retirement to rescue a friend’s granddaughter from a sorcerer.

Small Mercies by Dennis Lehane
An intense and moving work of crime fiction, set during a summer of racial unrest in Boston, when a white woman’s daughter disappears on the same night that a young Black man is killed.

Vera Wong's Unsolicited Advice for Murderers by Jesse Q. Sutanto
A humorous cozy mystery featuring a senior sleuth who finds a body in her Chinatown tea shop and befriends all her suspects.

Good Night, Irene by Luis Alberto Urrea
Inspired by the World War II experiences of the author’s mother, this story of two women from different backgrounds serving in the Red Cross is an uplifting portrait of friendship and valor in harrowing circumstances.

Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt
A heartfelt and engaging story of a captive octopus who longs for escape and a grieving woman working at the aquarium who form a bond and are able to help each other find peace.

The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese
A weighty and absorbing saga of an Indian family in the coastal region of Kerala who are afflicted by a malady that includes an aversion to water.

Nonfiction books for adults 

The Cook's Book by Bri McKoy
This foolproof, upbeat kitchen companion helps home cooks go beyond simple recipe reading and gives them the skills they need to master the art of confident cooking.

Under Alien Skies by Philip Plait
A far-out experience for the armchair traveler, touring the universe with stops at the Moon, Mars, a nebula, a black hole, and more, complete with color photos and illustrations.

Why We Love Baseball by Joe Posnanski
A celebration of the most magical moments in baseball, from Little League to the Majors, reminding casual fans and experts alike why the sport is America’s pastime.

Wake Up with Purpose by Sister Jean Schmidt
A remarkable memoir filled with history, wonder, and common-sense wisdom from a 103-year-old nun and college basketball fan at Loyola Chicago.

Brave the Wild River by Melissa Sevigny
The riveting tale of two pioneering women who embarked on a historic botanical survey by boat down the Colorado River and through the Grand Canyon.

My Name is Barbra by Barbra Streisand
This long-anticipated memoir by the superstar of stage, screen, and song will be a welcome gift for her many fans.

Books for teens

Her Radiant Curse by Elizabeth Lim
Two sisters fight to save each other when a betrothal contest goes wrong, and a great evil is unleashed. (Grades 7 & up)

Warrior Girl Unearthed by Angeline Boulley
Perry Firekeeper-Birch, a Native American teen, must do everything she can to bring her ancestors back to their rightful resting place.
(Grades 9-12)

The Brothers Hawthorne by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
The games are not over yet—the Hawthorne brothers can’t stay away from the twisted clues and mysteries that test just how far they will go. (Grades 6 & up)

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert
 A quirky, conspiracy-theory content creator and a perfect football star put themselves to the test by surviving the outdoors, and each other. (Grades 9-12)

Books for middle grades

Children's Book of Music by DK Publishing
This book is packed with facts and photos talking about music all around the world. You will even discover how instruments are made! (Grades 3–6)

Lei and the Fire Goddess by Malia Maunakea
An action packed adventure where a 12 year old girl discovers her grandmother’s Hawaiian folk tales and legends are true. (Grades 4–6)

The Labors of Hercules Beal by Gary D. Schmidt
The smallest kid in class is given the challenge to recreate the mythical challenges of Hercules and learns he is not alone. (Grades 4-6)

The First Cat in Space Ate Pizza by Mac Barnett
The First Cat and the Moon Queen must travel to find a cure after the moon queen is poisoned with her soup! (Grades 3-6)

Early chapter books

Cat on the Run 1: Cat on the Run in Cat of Death! by Aaron Blabey
What happens when the world’s biggest cat video star gets accused of a crime she didn’t commit? She becomes a cat on the run, that’s what. (Grades 2-4)

The Handbook of Forgotten Skills by Elaine Batiste and Natalie Crowley
Unlock hours of fun in this illustrated guide to classic fun and handy skills for a new generation. (Grades 2–5) 

Books for early readers

The Skull: A Tyrolean Folktale by Jon Klassen
Brave girl Otilla finds herself lost in the dark forest after escaping a terrible danger and comes upon a cabin where she’s hosted by a skull who’s afraid of something, too. (Grades K–3)

Cat Sees Snow by Laura Gehl; illustrated by Fred Blunt
Perfect for kids at the beginning of their reading journeys! Cat sees snow. Dog cannot blow the snow. Pig is slow in the snow. Can they still have fun in
the snow? (Grades K-2)

Picture books

Woo Hoo! You're Doing Great! by Sandra Boynton
An extremely exuberant chicken has an important message to share in this entertaining rhyming book that reminds readers that trying your best is reason enough to celebrate. (Ages 4 & up)

How to Count to One: (and don't even THINK about bigger numbers!) by Caspar Salmon
A hilariously bossy picture book about counting that children will love to try and outsmart! (Ages 3–6)

Eric Loves Animals: (just like you!) by Eric Carle
Explore the animal kingdom through the eyes of bestselling author and illustrator Eric Carle with this alphabetized treasury of animal illustrations. (Ages 2-6)

Tap! Tap! Tap!: Dance! Dance! Dance! by Hervé Tullet
Read, play, and DANCE as your hands become the dancer and the book the dance floor in this interactive and definitely out-of-the box picture book! (Ages 3-6)