Southern Belle in Training

Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle Blog || Est. 2012 || Virginia Beach, VA

November 20, 2020

2020 Gift Guides: BOOKS FOR HER

     Wrapping up (ha- pun not intended!) Gift Guide Week with one dedicated to one of my very favorite things to both give and receive: books! I think giving a book to a friend, family member or significant other is always a wonderful choice. 

     Typically, I think a non-fiction book or cookbook is the best way to go for a gift, versus fiction. I tend to read 99% of my fiction from the library or a cheap local used bookstore, it's rare that I buy a fiction book brand new at full price. But I have been lucky with fiction and read some truly wonderful novels in the past couple years, so I did include two of them that I think would appeal to a lot of readers in this guide.

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1. - If you know a woman who was ever in a sorority in college, I guarantee she will love this book. It's about a fictional sorority at Ole Miss, and also deals with some important themes about racism and class in the modern South. It's an incredible read, and brought back so many fond memories for me of my Greek life days. I love everything from this author, but I think Rush would be her best book to gift.

2. - Emily Giffin's novels have been wildly popular in recent years. I've read most of them, and found most to be good, but not great. But her latest book, The Lies That Bind, was wonderful! My favorite by far. It's set just before, during, and in the months after 9/11 in NYC. I didn't guess the ending at all, and I was super invested in the entire book. It was an easy but meaningful fiction read.

3. - One of my sorority sisters gave me Chrissy Teigen's Cravings cookbook during a gift swap a few years ago, and it's definitely become one of my most beloved and frequently used! Chrissy's mac n cheese recipe in here is to die for, and a lot of the other recipes are wonderful as well. Chrissy wrote a follow-up cookbook in 2018, which I actually have on my own Christmas list this year!

4. - Over the last couple years, I've gotten really into reading memoirs from well-known or celebrity women who inspire me. Jessica Simpson published her memoir, Open Book, last winter, and it's definitely become one of my favorite memoirs I've ever read. Whether you're a Jessica fan specifically, or just a big enthusiast of early 2000s pop culture in general like I am, you'll love this book. It's easy to read, and it truly feels like you're grabbing coffee with Jessica while she tells you about her life. 

5. - I don't personally own this book, but wouldn't this make a great gift for fans of The Office?! The party planning committee episodes are some of my favorites from the iconic TV show. I also think this would make a hilarious gift for a co-worker that might be in charge of planning parties at your work! 

6. - I am convinced everyone needs a copy of this iconic American cookbook in their home. My mom bought me one years ago, and I've had it with me since I moved into my first apartment a few years ago. I know I've featured it many times in past guides on the blog, but it's just that much of a staple cookbook that it deserves all the love. The Texas Sheet Cake is my favorite recipe in it!

7. - Another favorite cookbook that my mom has gotten me! I had heard of the Pioneer Woman and her TV show before, but I'd never tried any of her recipes until my mom got me this cookbook a few Christmases ago. I love it!! I totally get the Pioneer Woman hype now. Her recipes are fairly easy and super delicious. I now own a few of her cookbooks, but I think Pioneer Woman Cooks is still the best one. 

8. - I got the official Callie's Little Hot Biscuits cookbook for Christmas last year, and I have really enjoyed cooking my way through it this year. Their various biscuit recipes made for wonderful comfort food options to experiment with during stay-at-home this spring, and I also found the best pie crust recipe ever in this book! If you know someone who loves Southern food, this book is for them.

9. - Coffee table books are always a great gift option. They're something that I love to have and enjoy, but rarely buy for myself. I think they'd also make an awesome gift for someone with a new home or apartment this holiday season! I don't own any of the Assouline books myself, but I know the quality and design of them are amazing. I love the look of this fun Palm Beach one! 

10. - Were you as obsessed with The Home Edit Netflix show this year as I was?! A lot of my friends just discovered the wonders of Clea and Joanna this year, but I'd been following them on Instagram for a few years and got their first book, The Home Edit, last year for Christmas. Their book is just as fun as the show was, and it even features exclusive pictures of the homes of a few of the celebrity clients from the show! They just released another book this year, which is on my Christmas wishlist for this year. 

11. - Reese Witherspoon's memoir/cookbook/Southern lifestyle book, Whiskey in a Teacup, came out a few years ago now, but I finally got my hands on a copy last year. Because the cover of this book is so darling, it also can double as a coffee table book! I actually have yet to try any of Reese's recipes in here but I want to soon. I have really enjoyed reading some of her memoir sections and the parts about Southern culture though! 

   I'd love to hear about your favorite books to both gift and receive! Let me know in the comments.

   I hope you enjoyed Gift Guide Week on the blog! I still have one more gift post that I'm planning to share the week after Thanksgiving, but that one will be a bit different than the ones this week. It'll feature virtual and experience gifts!


     God Bless,

     xoxo Annaliese 


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