Need gift ideas? Here are a bunch of nerdy books that are a perfect fit!

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The holidays are upon us, and, if you’re anything like us, sometimes shopping for presents can be overwhelming. Luckily our friends at Thunder Bay Press and Canterbury Classics sent over a few awesome ideas for the book fans among us, and we hope you like them as much a we do!

We’ve also rounded up a number of our favorite dragon-themed books to diversify our holiday recommendations! Whether you’re buying for a classic fantasy fan or dragon enthusiast, we’re sure you’ll be able to find a gift after perusing our list!

We’ve personally enjoyed every product here (and have provided links to accompanying reviews, where available), so take it from us – these are worth snagging!


Throwback to Fantasy and Scifi Classics

Classic Tales of Science Fiction & Fantasy is the perfect present for fans of classic stories. It’s packed with incredible books like A Princess of Mars, The War of the Worlds, A Journey to the Center of the Earth, and many more.

51pd1lb1tql-_sx314_bo1204203200_Long before we ventured into outer space or explored the most remote regions of the planet, writers have spun stories of what might lie in those unknown worlds, or what awaits humanity in the future. Classic Tales of Science Fiction & Fantasy ($24.99; ISBN: 978-1-62686-801-4; Canterbury Classics) is a collection of ten novels and short stories that blazed the trail for the popular genre, in a handsome leather-bound edition that is perfect for gift-giving. Works by acclaimed authors such as Jules Verne, H. G. Wells, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Jack London, and H. P. Lovecraft will transport the reader to distant places and times—and set the imagination ablaze!

Our thoughts: Guys, this book is gorgeous. With gold gilded edges, blue foiled detail on the illustrated leather cover, and awesome illustrations just inside, it definitely entices the reader to peruse.


Tolkien-Inspired Adult Coloring Books

Next up are some awesome adult coloring books set in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings universe:

A Bestiary of Tolkien Coloring Book illustrated by Mauro Mazzara and Andrea Piparo ($10.39)

613ylgivgvl-_sy496_bo1204203200_Gorgeous line art begs for color in this compendium of the beasts, monsters, and flora and fauna of Middle-earth. In A Bestiary of Tolkien Coloring ($14.99; ISBN: 978-1-62686-777-2)bring your favorite creatures from the books into sharp detail with your colored pencils or markers. Smaug the dragon, Balrogs, Hobbits, and Elves give you plenty of opportunity for creativity and shading. Turn each of the 90 pages into a precious work of art, in a 10” x 10” format for more coloring area!

Tolkien’s World: A Fantasy Coloring Book by Allan Curless (Author), Mauro Mazzara (Illustrator) – ($10.95)

612wt3avfrl-_sx497_bo1204203200_ This beautiful coloring book—suitable for Tolkien fans of all ages—presents more than 90 pages of famous scenes from Middle-earth, from the Trees of the Valar to Mount Doom; and characters as beloved as Gandalf the wizard, or as feared as Smaug the dragon. Line art illustrating the fantastical world of Middle-earth is readyfor your colorful imagination! Includes scenes and characters from The Silmarillion, The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings.

Our thoughts: These coloring books are so incredibly cool, and they’re pretty too, with gold foil detail on the illustrated covers. They cover the entire Tolkien universe, and I honestly don’t know which one I like more, the one with just creatures or the one that also shows locations. Either book would be a great addition to the personal collection of any Tolkien fan.


Dragons, Dragons, and More Dragons!

Not sure about you, but we’re always looking for more dragon-related books to read while we wait (im)patiently for Book 5! We’ve included a few of great dragon-y books, and included a few of our favorite fantasy novels (which may or may not feature dragons) for you to buy for yourself or for a friend!

Dragonology: The Complete Book of Dragons ($12.50) 

For true believers only, a lavishly illustrated reproduction of a legendary volume by the world’s most distinguished dragonologist. Don’t let it fall into the wrong hands!

Do you believe in dragons? Now, for the first time, the long-lost research of renowned nineteenth century dragonologist Dr. Ernest Drake is presented in all its eccentric glory, happily bridging the gap between dragon legend and fact. The meticulous Dr. Drake assigns Latin names to various dragon species, ruminates on why dragons are able to speak, speculates on how they could fly, and explains the true purpose of their notorious hoarding habits.

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman ($6.70)

In the kingdom of Goredd, dragons and humans live and work side by side – while below the surface, tensions and hostility simmer.

The newest member of the royal court, a uniquely gifted musician named Seraphina, holds a deep secret of her own. One that she guards with all of her being.

When a member of the royal family is brutally murdered, Seraphina is drawn into the investigation alongside the dangerously perceptive—and dashing—Prince Lucien. But as the two uncover a sinister plot to destroy the wavering peace of the kingdom, Seraphina’s struggle to protect her secret becomes increasingly difficult… while its discovery could mean her very life.

Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke ($6.70)

With a lonely boy named Ben on board, the brave young dragon Firedrake sets out on a magical journey to find the mythical place where silver dragons can live in peace forever. Flying over moonlit lands and sparkling seas, they encounter fantastic creatures, summon up surprising courage–and cross the path of a ruthless villain with an ancient grudge who’s determined to end their quest. Only a secret destiny can save the dragons in this enchanting adventure about the true meaning home.

The Abhorsen/Old Kingdom Trilogy by Garth Nix (Book one, $5; Trilogy box set, $27)

Since childhood, Sabriel has lived outside the walls of the Old Kingdom, away from the power of Free Magic, and away from the Dead who refuse to stay dead. But now her father, the Abhorson, is missing, and Sabriel must cross into that world to find him. With Mogget, whose feline form hides a powerful, perhaps malevolent spirit, and Touchstone, a young Charter Mage, Sabriel travels deep into the Old Kingdom. There she confronts an evil that threatens much more than her life and comes face-to-face with her own hidden destiny. . .

Dragonflight (Dragonriders of Pern series) by Anne McCaffrey (Book one, $7.50; Trilogy box set, $15)

To the nobles who live in Benden Weyr, Lessa is nothing but a ragged kitchen girl. For most of her life she has survived by serving those who betrayed her father and took over his lands. Now the time has come for Lessa to shed her disguise—and take back her stolen birthright.

But everything changes when she meets a queen dragon. The bond they share will be deep and last forever. It will protect them when, for the first time in centuries, Lessa’s world is threatened by Thread, an evil substance that falls like rain and destroys everything it touches. Dragons and their Riders once protected the planet from Thread, but there are very few of them left these days. Now brave Lessa must risk her life, and the life of her beloved dragon, to save her beautiful world. . .

The Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud (Book one, $9)

Nathaniel is a magician’s apprentice, taking his first lessons in the arts of magic. But when a devious hot-shot wizard named Simon Lovelace ruthlessly humiliates Nathaniel in front of his elders, Nathaniel decides to kick up his education a few notches and show Lovelace who’s boss. With revenge on his mind, he summons the powerful djinni, Bartimaeus. But summoning Bartimaeus and controlling him are two different things entirely, and when Nathaniel sends the djinni out to steal Lovelace’s greatest treasure, the Amulet of Samarkand, he finds himself caught up in a whirlwind of magical espionage, murder, and rebellion.



Big thanks to Thunder Bay Press and Canterbury Classics who provided copies of the first three books!

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About Author

Lauren Zurchin is a professional photographer, creator of the 'Beyond Words' author calendar, and a life-long book enthusiast. When not catching up on the latest YA titles, she can be found nerding out to birds and roadtripping across the US.

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