The Modern Mrs Darcy 2016 Gift Guide for Book Lovers

Dear readers, I didn’t intend to make this list so long, but there’s so much good bookish stuff out there this year that I couldn’t help myself. I present to you my wish list (and maybe yours).

1. Book darts

These magical little bookmarks are invaluable for not only marking your place, but prepping for book club (or blog post writing). Mark not only your page, but the exact line you want to remember. Take it from a convert: once you try them you can’t go back to your old bookmarking ways.


2. Book weight

A beautiful book weight holds your book open and looks good doing it. An essential for writerly types. My own book weight is technically a trivet, but it does the job just fine. This is another classic option, in leather.

3. Blackwing pencils

For the pencil geek in your life, give them the best pencil they’ll ever use. Start with a mixed set, or go for a box of the crowd-pleasing Pearls.  Don’t forget the sharpener.

fountain pen and journal

4. Fountain pen

Lamy makes high-quality pens at an affordable price. The Safari (most popular) and Vista (what I have) are good options for those new to the world of fountain pens.

5. Stationery

I love these Thank Your cards from Rainy day Colors, these Hey Carrots cards from Carrot Top Paper Shop, and these floral beauties from Rifle Paper Co.


Try the hand-stamped, upcycled spoon collection from Stamp and Soul, including “one more chapter,” “I read past my bedtime,” and “Bookmark? You mean Quitter Strip.” Also don’t miss the literary heroine bookmarks from Carrot Top Paper Shop.

Jane Austen classics

7. Jane Austen classics

I am loving the charming, painterly designs on these new Penguin edition. (Rules I live by: you can never have too many copies of Anne of Green Gables or Jane Austen anything.)

8. Personalized bookplates

Like these gorgeous ones from Felix Doolittle.

9. Jewelry made from books

From Made From Books, by Yes and Yes Designs. I especially love the Nancy Drew pin and initial necklace.

personal library kit

10. Personal library kit

We gave this to my daughters last year and it was a hit! But it’s not just for kids; several adults I know use this to up the odds the books they loan out get returned to them. Also: it’s so fun.

11. A bookish subscription

Got a literary fiction lover in your life? Consider a First Editions Club, like those run by Parnassus Books and Book Passage, and they’ll get a new, carefully chosen hardcover (often signed by the author) in the mail every month.

Or try A Novel subscription from The Novel Neighbor in St. Louis, and send your loved one a staff-selected, recently released hardcover book as often as you choose (monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly), customized to each reader’s taste.

what are you reading now? nypl pouch

12. Pencil pouch

I especially love this What are you reading now? pouch from the New York Public Library. Sleep less, read more is another adorable option from Lucy Jane Totes.

13. Reading journal

So many good options to choose from! This is my favorite $6 reading journal. A nice blank Moleskine or Leuchtturm will also do the job (and does double duty for bullet journal fans). This dotted Leuchtturm is what I use, and comes in a rainbow of pretty colors.

Also of interest: Emily McDowell’s journals, bearing cover designs like “Totally Legitimate Feelings” and “Notes for My Future Therapist.” Or the Novel Journals, in which the text of your favorite novels—in a teeny tiny font—make the lines you write on.

How I talk about the books I don't like.

14. Beautiful books

Clothbound editions, colorful box sets, or a matching set of classics. Lots of ideas here.

15. Frostbeard candles

Scents of note: Old Books, Sherlock’s Study, Pemberly, Oxford Library, Sassenach, Christmas at the Burrow, Gatsby’s Mansion … you get the idea.


16. Modern bookends

To the people who love me: I would so like to see this beautiful handmade modern bookend under my tree.

17. Books and booze

Try these favorite, entertaining recipe books from Tim Federle: Tequila Mockingbird, Gone with the Gin, or Hickory Daiquiri Dock, and pair with a bottle of something your loved one will enjoy.

18. Book of the Month

Every month Book of the Month pores through hundreds of newly published titles and selects the five best to share with their members. Membership is easy and fun; the selections are interesting and varied, and because you can skip a month whenever you choose, your loved one will never be stuck with a book they don’t want. I gave myself this gift last year and have been enjoying it all year long.


19. Lettermate

The name says it all: a handy tool for those of us that have trouble writing in a straight line.


20. Bath caddy

A gift that keeps on giving: give your loved one a place to hold their candles, cup of tea, and book so they can enjoy luxurious soaks in the bath all year long.

21. Modern Mrs Darcy Book Club gift subscription

This option is brand new! Make someone’s month–or year–with a Modern Mrs Darcy book club membership, or add it to your own wish list. 3 month, 6 month, or 12 month memberships available.

What’s on YOUR wish list this season? What are you giving the book lovers in your life? 

gift guide for book lovers


Leave A Comment
  1. I was just telling my husband that I want a bath caddy so I can read while I soak. I’m too afraid to take my Kindle in with me but I would love to read some of my hard copy books while I relax. Great list! I had no idea some of these things even existed!

  2. Ann says:

    What a great list of gift ideas – thank you! Another wonderful book subscription service can be found at Brilliant Books, an independent bookstore in Traverse City, Michigan. Their Brilliant Books Monthly subscription program has staff hand picking a book for you based on your preferences. And if you get a book you’ve read or don’t like, they’ll replace it for you!

  3. Wyndi says:

    I was hoping there’d be a way for gifting the book club. I have forwarded the list to my husband with some strong hints 🙂

  4. Samantha says:

    I always want to give my sister and her kids gifts that mean something to them and are well thought out. No sweaters or Christmas coffee mugs (not that there is anything wrong with either). This list has helped me out immensely since they all are readers! Thank you so much for sharing all of these wonderful bookish gifts!

  5. Jackie says: has a ton of book related gifts. They have mugs, tshirts, coasters, and other items. If you sign up for their email they will send out coupons for different percentages off throughout the year.

  6. Susan V says:

    I haven’t taken a bath in YEARS, but that picture sure makes it appealing! Now if they could invent something to keep the water warm while you’re in there….

    I think I might get that little library set for my 7 and 8 year old granddaughters. They’re always playing library, with signs at the entrance of the living room, and a table where they sit to check out books. 🙂

  7. Anne Neulieb says:

    I am finished with our Christmas shopping, so I really need to stop looking at these gift list ideas. I could not resist those literary heroine bookmarks!!!

  8. Mary in Tennessee says:

    I understand the book weight for a cookbook. But I don’t understand how a “writerly type” would use it.

    It’s not a normal gift option, but the best present I ever got my book collecting husband was a set of three 84 inches tall bookcases!

    • Anne says:

      That is a wonderful and memorable gift!

      For a writer, the book weight holds the page open so you have two free hands to write or type, if you’re making notes or taking quotes.

  9. Veronica says:

    Love these ideas. I asked for books, of course, but also a tablet pillow for my kindle. And now a membership to the Modern Mrs Darcy book club. I love the group, and it’s really adding to my TBR list. My two little grandchildren already got their Christmas books on Thanksgiving, and dh is getting Walking Dead compendium two. Not my cup of tea, but he likes the series.

  10. Thanks for the shout-out Anne! We also have round bookplates called Ex Libris Medallions and Illustrated Bookmarks collections with 5 bookmarks per themed sets. Some of these are stories within themselves! Thanks again, and happy holidays!

  11. Annette Silveira says:

    Is it wrong that I want one of each gift for myself?
    I’m going to have Holland and her staff hand-pick my brand-new granddaughter books for the coming year. Such a treat!

  12. Spoorthy says:

    Now I really would like to try those book darts, I keep lose my paper bookmarks sometimes. I think these will hold.
    I feel like people think so much when they are going to gift a book lover but these simple everyday things work just fine.

  13. ~Amy F.~ says:

    This is a little bit off-topic, but you mentioned using a Leuchtturm as a reading journal. How do you do it? I guess what I want to know is, what do you write in a blank reading journal (i.e. not pre-printed)? Do you write about every book you read? How do you organize it? I want to involve my journal in my reading next year and am not quite sure how.

    • Susan says:

      Amy, I’m not Anne, but I’ve been keeping a Reading Journal for awhile now, so I’ll tell you how I do it. And I hope Anne answers too, and made she’ll even do a video to explain how she does it! So far this year, I’ve read 50 books (about double the previous year, and I have MMD to thank for that!). I use a disc-bound system, but you could use any notebook. I include the Title, Author, Year Published, Publisher, Number of Pages, and Genre. My biggies this year have been Historical Fiction (lots of WW2 and Memoir. I also read several Middle Grade Fiction books. I include the date I finished it (not the date I started it), how many stars I gave it, and where the book came from (Library, Kindle book I own, Kindle book borrowed from library, etc). This takes up a few lines. Then I write however much I want about the book. Sometimes it’s a summary of the plot, sometimes it’s how the book made me feel, sometimes it’s quotes from the book. Very rarely, it might just be half a page, usually it’s a page or more (my journals are 8.5×5.5). The Kitchen House and its sequel (Glory Over Everything) and The Nightingale were books I had a lot to say about – about 3 pages each. I also keep a regular journal too, so if I have a lot to say in that journal that day, I might not write quite as much in about the book I just finished if it didn’t have a big impact on me. Since I do the disc-bound system (more info upon request!), I finally pulled out the pages from the back of my regular journals where I wrote about the books I read, and put them together in a BOOKS journal this year. So I have at least a list and some notes on many of the books going back several years.

      This past January, I got all excited about all the reading challenges I found out there on the web, and I printed a lot of those out and put them in my journal too. I do have to say I didn’t complete any of those challenges, but I came close with the MMD’s Book Challenge. I didn’t read books just to complete categories, as I read as I felt led, but I ended up completing a lot of Anne’s categories anyway. ;-o

      I hope this helps! Please feel free to ask me more questions. My email address is moot96 AT aol DOT com. Finding Anne’s blog in late 2015 really changed my reading life!

      • ~Amy F.~ says:

        Susan, thanks so much for your thorough response! I like that you just write anything about the book, so it can be different for each book. This year, I intended to review everything I read on Goodreads, but I found I didn’t want to write a studious review for every. Single. Book. Your idea sounds much more doable! I think keeping it private might help me interact with some books on a deeper level.

    • Susan says:

      Oh, I forgot to mention, I also keep a Books to Read list, but I found it easiest to keep it in a Word document on my computer, since I’m sitting at my computer when I go through Anne’s Kindle Deals everyday, and my Bookbub email of Kindle books on sale. I also look at, which lists a ton of Christian books (both fiction and non) that you can get for cheap on the Kindle. I have over 1000 Kindle books that I’ve gotten for free or very cheap over the years (we got our first Kindle when they first came out, now I manage a family account for my husband and I and our 3 grown daughters – often at least 3 of us end of reading the same book). So I just type in the titles, authors, genre, and where I can find it (on my Kindle already, on the Kindle from the library, or available at the library. I’ve had the overwhelming experience of requesting a ton of books from the library at the same time, then I’ll have 10 books that come in at the same time, and I can’t read them all before I need to get them back to the library. Our library has a wonderful policy of not charging “seniors” 62 and over overdue fines!! We’re 63 and we just found this out, and it’s mind-boggling, but I do try to get the books back on time (or renew them). We’re blessed to have an excellent public library only minutes from our home and they also take suggestions and if it’s a book that’s a year old or newer, they will buy it and then I get to be the first to read it! Very cool indeed! 🙂

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