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Tis the season… for buying books for your friends, family, and colleagues! We’ve compiled a list for the variety of nerds in your life—from Doctor Who to Dune, from Game of Thrones to The Adventure Zone, we’ve got a geeky book gift recommendation for you.
Here is a list of 15 books we recommend for every kind of nerd in your life.
I Love the Bones of You: My Father and the Making of Me by Christopher Eccleston
For: The Doctor Who fan in your life
Raw and real, this memoir by Doctor Who and The Leftovers actor Christopher Eccleston is a reflection on his relationship with his stoic yet loving father following his death. If you’re looking for something a bit more serious this holiday season, check this out—it includes some lovely details about Eccleston’s personal life, including the fact that his kid calls the Daleks “the Garlics.” Adorable.
Monster, She Wrote: The Women Who Pioneered Horror and Speculative Fiction by Lisa Kroger and Melanie R. Anderson
For: The literary history nerd in your life
Women have, historically, been written out of history and/or had their impact greatly diminished. Monster, She Wrote attempts to correct some of that injustice by highlighting the women writers who “defied convention to craft some of literature’s stangest tales.” Including more well-known writers like Mary Shelley and lesser known scribes like Magaret “Mad Madge” Cavendish, who wrote a sci-fi epic 150 years before Shelley penned Frankenstein, even your most obsessive of literary friends will most likely find something new in this tome.
Star Trek: The Official Guide to the Animated Series by Aaron Harvey, Rich Schepis, and Saturday Morning Trek
For: The Star Trek fan in your life
With a new animated Star Trek series right around the corner, now is the perfect time to celebrate the original animated Trek adventure: the highly underrated Star Trek: The Animated Series. Continuing on the canon begun in The Original Series, The Animated Series continues to influence Trek canon today—most especially when it comes to Discovery.
This book includes behind-the-scenes production documents, never-before-seen art, and all-new interviews with the people who produced the animated adventures, and is perfect for Star Trek fans who have already consumed The Animated Series and Star Trek fans who have yet to discover the series’ unique delights.
Firefly: The Big Damn Cookbook by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel
For: The Firefly fan in your life
We’re always looking for ways to dive back into the world of cancelled-too-soon Firefly, and this cookbook is a particularly fun way to do so. Including over 70 recipes inspired by the Joss Whedon TV show, Firefly: The Big Damn Cookbook is the perfect gift for your nerdy friend who also happens to be into cooking. Who knows? Maybe they’ll share some of Mama Reynold’s shoofly pie with you?
Warrior of the Altaii by Robert Jordan
For: The Wheel of Time fan in your life
With Amazon’s Wheel of Time series currently filming, the fantasy epic nerd in your life is probably hyped for all things Robert Jordan. While the beloved author passed away back in 2007, Tor Books recently published his very first novel, Warrior of the Altaii, an action-driven fantasy about a group of horse warriors whose very existence is threatened. It’s the perfect gift for the Wheel of Time fan in your life.
Resistance Reborn: Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker by Rebecca Roanhorse
For: The Star Wars fan in your life
By the time Christmas rolls around, most Star Wars fans will have consumed The Rise of Skywalker with their eyeballs and will be hungry for more. Enter this official book from Hugo Award-winning author Rebecca Roanhorse, which explores what happens to Poe, Leia, Rey, and Finn between the last two movies.
The Art of Game of Thrones, The Official Book of Design From Seasons 1 to 8
For: The Game of Thrones fan in your life
While Game of Thrones fans may not be happy with the narrative consistency of the last few seasons of the HBO epic, I don’t think anyone can find a flaw in the production design work of this gorgeous (and expensive) show. Game of Thrones fans can celebrate the consistent successes of this show with The Art of Game of Thrones—which includes 432 pages of concept art, sketches, and production design images. The perfect coffee table book for the fantasy nerd in your life!
The Future of Another Timeline by Annalee Newitz
For: The riot girl in your life
In what is sure to become a feminist time travel classic, io9 founding editor Annalee Newitz ties together the perspectives of time traveler Tess, working to stop a group of misogynists from destroying time travel forever, and Beth, a 17-year-old girl exploring the punk scene in 1992 California. Really, this standalone novel a great book for any science fiction lover in your life, but if they have a particular interest in social justice, even better!
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: The Illustrated Edition
For: The Harry Potter fan in your life
Harry Potter is always a safe gift bet, especially when it comes to these gorgeous illustrated editions, with art from award-winning artist Jim Kay that could be framed and hung on the wall. The Goblet of Fire is the most recent release in this series, but, even if your gift-receiver doesn’t have the previous three books in the series, this is a gift any Potterhead would be ecstatic to get.
The Adventure Zone: Murder on the Rockport Limited!
For: The D&D fan in your life
The second book in the McElroy family’s wildly successful graphic novel adaptation series of their popular D&D podcast, Murder on the Rockport Limited! works for longtime fans of the pod or for those who couldn’t tell Clint from Travis. Art from Carey Pietsch brings this fantastical and hilarious world to life, making this the perfect gift for loved ones who have always wanted their own D&D campaign jump off of the table.
Children of Virtue and Vengeance
For: The YA fan in your life
Hot off the presses this December, this sequel to Tomi Adeyemi’s debut fantasy Children of Blood and Bone is sure to be one of the most-talked-about YA books of the year. The story of Zélie and Amari continues as Adeyemi further explores her west African-inspired fantasy world, as magic returns to the land of Orïsha in this second book in the planned trilogy.
The City in the Middle of the Night by Charlie Jane Anders
For: The classic science fiction fan in your life
Many have compared Charlie Jane Anders’ work to sci-fi legend Ursula Le Guin, and it’s not hard to see why: Anders’ work is as topical and it is visionary. Anders’ second novel after All the Birds in the Sky, The City in the Middle of the Night takes readers to a tidally-locked planet divided between a permanently frozen darkness on one side of the body and an endless sunshine on the other. Anders’ recycles some of the elements of classic science fiction into something beautiful and new.
Dune: Deluxe Edition by Frank Herbert
For: The person in your life who won’t stop talking about the upcoming Dune movie
It’s a good time to be a Dune fan. Not only is there a screen adaptation coming from Arrival director Denis Villeneuve in 2020, but Ace just released this gorgeous special edition of the fantasy classic. With an iconic new cover, a redesigned world map of Dune, an updated intro from Brian Herbert, and stained page edges, this story has never looked so good.
Gideon: The Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
For: The lesbian necromancers in your life
Come for the lesbian necromancers, stay for the skeleton battles! I… don’t really feel like I need to write anything else after that. But this buzzworthy 2019 title is a definitive winner: The start of a planned trilogy, Gideon the Ninth follows indentured-servant-turned-swordswoman Gideon Nav, who is tasked with keeping sworn enemy Harrowhark Nonagesimus safe.
This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone
For: The speculative fiction fan who only has time for a novella
To call this lovely story “only” a novella would be doing the craft of the story a disservice. Told from the dual perspectives of two time-traveling agents from warring futures, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone choose every word of this story thoughtfully. Their war may stretch across space and time, but the relationship between Red and Blue is beautiful in its intimacy. The perfect gift to trick your loved one into reading more of both El-Mohtar and Gladstone’s wonderful work.
Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!
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