Ever wanted to try your hand at knitting but thought it was too complicated? This is the kit for you. I had been attempting on and off to try and knit for quite a long period of time but could never quite get the hang of it until I picked up this book. It includes all items you need to get started and covers the basics of knitting so you can immediately get to crafting. The diagrams that are provided inside are clear and easy to follow, making this craft a little less daunting. Beginning knitters of any age will appreciate the simple, but fun patterns included. Don't be intimidated any longer; check out this book and get to knitting! --Heather H.
The moment I saw this upon the cart of books we were to shelve that night, I knew I must read it aloud (in various character voices) to all my fellow booksellers on shift that evening. For I am a nothing if not a massive fan of modern classics being put into modern situations. Texts from Jane Eyre showcases a delightfully hilarious understanding of famous fictional characters in the simple format of text messaging. From Sherlock and Watson's argument over a certain habit of Sherlock's to Daisy always texting while driving. For any lover of literature, or for anyone looking for even shorter versions of all modern classics, this book will leave you keeled over from laughter. --Meghan
I first became acquainted with Liz Climo's work through tumblr. Every so often, one of her drawings would pop up on my feed, and I couldn't help but laugh and want to go "aww" at the same time. When I saw this on the shelf, I got so excited and couldn't help but snatch it up. My favorite comic made its way into this book (keep an eye out for an orca whale, a penguin, and some panda ears) and there's plenty more goodness to be had. If you're in the mood for some illustrations that are both funny and adorable at the same time, check out this book, for it doesn't disappoint.
Whether you are a painter, writer, architect, maker of quilts, or builder of model airplanes, you will gain solace and inspiration from this book. It turns out, you are not the only one who has faced the daily challenge of trying to find the time to create. In fact, just about every creative genius from Ben Franklin to Andy Warhol has faced the same problem. This book ,in concise little anecdotes, tells how over 150 creative people solved their "time" problem. It shares their daily rituals and routines that insured they would produce and not just procrastinate. Lots of interesting details make this an amusing read, as well. Great gift for the artist or creative spirit in your family. --Walt C.
Styled after an Ikea catalog, this horror novel delighted my inner typesetting/design nerd. Then it played to my sympathies by starring a cast of characters that work for the great and powerful Orsk--an Ikea knock-off store. The eclectic group of "team partners" is drafted by the store's fearless leader to solve the reoccurring problems that keep cropping up in the off hours of the store. A couple of them suspect the property's shady past as a panopticon-style prison in the 19th century might play a role in the late-night shenanigans. The creep-factor in this frequently grotesque story had me continuing to keep my back to the wall to prevent being ambushed by an army of blank faced penitents wanting to "reform" me. --CHRIS
Have you ever read a book that you connected with so well that you want to give it to all your family members and friends so they'll understand the thoughts in your head? For me, Hyperbole and a Half is that book. Brosh pulls directly from her award-winning blog and handles topics like depression and anxiety in a candid and hilarious way that had me laughing to the point that I had tears in my eyes. Loyal followers of Brosh's blog and those who have never encountered her work before can appreciate the hilarity woven throughout the pages of this book, especially the twenty-somethings who are still trying to find their place in the world. --HEATHER H.
If only I had found this book before I went to design school, I could have saved thousands in student debt. Chip Kidd's Go: A Kidd's Guide to Graphic Design is a beautifully executed book aimed toward encouraging young would-be designers. However, it is so stunningly and smartly done that a full-grown design nerd, such as myself, can really admire it for the work of art that it is. Kidd explains the various elements of design and uses examples from his portfolio as well as from other great designers. I love that he does not hesitate to have fun with the explanations, nor does he shy away from making jokes at his own expense. Kidd is a remarkable designer and writer and this book illustrates (pun intended) that beautifully. --Chris
Edward's is a tale of the struggle to keep his spirit alight and strive for his freedom while faced with the certainty of a life spent under lock and key. This memoir catalogs the trials, struggles and existential crisis of an imprisoned hamster. The tragic hero wrestles (as we all do) with who he is, what he truly craves from life and searches for meaning from the confines of his hamster-y oubliette. Edward's struggle to find a connection and beauty in this wire-bound world that we call life–and he calls his cage. This tale of hope is at once inspirational and heartbreaking. --Chris
Dear Laurie Notaro,
You, Jen Lancaster, Jenny Lawson, and I need to get together and have the most hilarious, bitchin'-est sleepover ever! Or the most intense, epic author rumble — honestly, I'm fine with either. Thank you for writing another fabulous book that, to quote Monk, made me "LOL out loud.”
Me - Lauren
Varied examples of exquisite life-changing stories comprise the entirety of The Moment, edited by Larry Smith. The conversation with dad after finding out she was pregnant (Ashley Allen); Oprah listening to his reasons why she should take a stand on the presidential election (Ray Richmond); a young child realizing she wasn't the center of the world (Elizabeth Gilbert), and a high school junior being told he had the ability/talent to become a writer (Dave Eggers) - many of life's wonders expressed in short and ever-so-meaningful stories. - Pinna
Emily Dickinson once said "Forever is composed of nows." Barbara Ann Kipfer has put together a sourcebook of simple instructions, 1,001 Ways to Live in the Moment, to teach us to practice mindfulness. Observing small details, practicing complete focus and living the being (rather than constant doing) are all ways to cultivate awareness. This handbook is perfect as a gift for a friend or yourself, a gift that will help make discovery and rediscovery everyday events—moment-to-moment meditative practices. - Pinna
What creeps you out? This laugh-out-loud gift book points out things from the oddball to the everyday that will make you giggle with recognition. Making the list are hairless cats, "grandma candy," really long hair and lifelike baby dolls. Once you start reading, you can't look away! - Sarah B.
It's a book—It's a journal—It's a great gift idea! This unique journal has themed pages that encourage you to write, draw, scribble etc. No need to have a love of reading or writing to enjoy this book. This is one of my favorite gifts for that hard to shop for person. - Michele
This book is an instant buy for any cat lover or fan of this adorable internet sensation. Since 2008, Maru has been stealing the hearts of millions of YouTube viewers worldwide and here's your chance to finally take him home! Join Maru in a play-by-play of his never-ending quest to sleep in the strangest places and his world famous box-slide. Guaranteed to make you smile from the first page you flip to, be prepared to fall in love with the silliest cat on the internet, if you haven't already. Published to include the original Japanese text, this book also makes a great resource for those interested in the language. - Alli
Arrested Devolopment is one of my favorite shows, so when I read that Tobias "never-nude" Funke (Cross's character) had a book out, I was psyched. There were multiple times while reading that I laughed out loud, "YouStar.com" being a particular favorite. While many find his humor irreverent, I love that he speaks his mind with no apologies. - Danielle
Chelsea Handler's latest collections can only be described as wild, uninhibited storytelling at its best. In Vodka, she embraces the mundane and horrifyingly embarrassing moments in life, transforming them into wickedly funny stories. The audio book is highly recommended for long work drives or road trips! - Danielle