A Gift for a Really Hard To Buy For Guy - Help!

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

iIf you had to pick just one book - what is your favorite? New or Old? But you just get one pick.

I am trying to choose a book for my brother who is turning 58.
He reads anything and everything. He has an IPAD but has never read a book electronically and so this will be his first.

Recently Read that I know about
A book on the Bacardi (rum) family
Cutting for Stone
Edgar Sawtelle
Immortal Cells of Henrietta Lacks
Can't remember the name but the book on the Obama/Clinton/Edwards behind the scenes campaign

So some new and not so new.
Anyway, would very much like to hear your favorite pick.

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. I cant say its my favorite book ever but its up near the top. You can check it out and see if it would be of interest. I read it and now my 87 yr old dad is reading it.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I will look right now. Thanks so much!

PS. So what is your fav book ever?

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

I cant pick just one. Sorry

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Devil At My Heels was recommended by many who read Unbroken. Did you happen to read that also?

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

No, Ive never heard of that one. I'll have to look it up, I read Seabiscuit by Hillenbrand but I like Unbroken better, its a truly remarkable and unusual story. What's your favorite book?

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Like you can't choose. Can't even choose series....altho I did love Dune

I recently read Edgar Sawtelle and Cutting for Stone and loved both. I liked The Art of Racing in the Rain.
Years ago I read A Land Remembered and loved that. And also the Ice People was a favorite.
I've read A Prayer for Owen Meany and it is a favorite......so many books ....so many favorites.

My las few were duds...
Major Pettigrews Last Stand
What She Forgot
Elizabeth Street

Unbroken was highly recommended, many of the reviewers mentioned Devil at My Heels....same subject but different voice.

I learned my bro read Unbroken, but now wonder if he might like the other.

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

I'm still thinking. I read a lot of nonfiction, but since it seems like you and your bro are avid readers it's going to be hard to find something he hasn't read. Please let me know me know if you find something so I can stop thinking about it.

Maybe a gift card? Here are a couple more that were great but obscure. The Monsters, The island of lost Maps by Miles Harvey, The Prof. and the Madman, The Beautiful Cigar Girl by Daniel Stashower and anything by Iain Pears but I really liked The Instance of the Fingerpost. These books are kind of dark. I also like anything by Bill Bryson, but he is a humorist. Maybe these will help.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

He has an IPAD but still reads paper. I wanted to get him something via Kindle for IPAD.
He likes biographies and he likes books about business organizations ...the start-ups....the ups and downs... He also,likes politics. And fiction with strong characters. I think I will play it safe with The Art of Racing in the Rain...and when his wife finds out if he read Devil..Heels, I will send him that since he liked Unbroken so much. thank you and if I need more advice I will post and if you think of another, please let me know because Christmas is around the corner.

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

Ive havent read The Art of Racing in the Rain. Most popular fiction doesnt grab me. The books above (except the ones by Iain Pears) are biographies at least to a point. I dont read political or business so cant help you there. I still read the old fashioned way lol and the books I mentioned above may not be avaliable any other way.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I was horrified when I got the Sony Reader as a Christmas from a hubby bursting with . ... ....something.....about his ingenious gift idea. Give up my paper books? The smell, the feel, the sound....only a non-reader would think the electronic reader could EVER take its place. Why I have given up the majority of shelf space in the house to store the best of the best....I even have more than one of my very favorites just 'in case' I loan and don't get back. Months later I downloaded a book because he kept asking when I would use....I didn't want to hurt his feelings.. And, I've never looked back!

Enzo..like Owen (Meany) was a privilege to "know"- sometimes you run across a fictional critter that reminds you of what you already know- but forget to remember- if that makes sense.

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

Ahh...The smell of books...

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

missingrosie==I just finished Art of Racing...oh I loved it...really loved it...Owen Meany is another fave pf mine...'
My own brother is 58 and really liked Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. I still want to read that after hearing a fascinating interview with the author. And Edgar Sawtelle is another I'd consider a pretty good guy book.

The ThIngs They Carried by Tim O'Brien, I liked, thought provoking fiction (if we're not still giving gift ideas then maybe just more books suggestions, can never have to many good book ideas!

Honeymoon with my Brother was a cool guy book. About two brothers that travel for a year after one gets stood up at the altar- I liked all the travel stuff but there us more than that and def things for a guy to relate to .

INto Thin Air by Jon Krakauer I found fascinating- Nonfic about Everest expeditions in 1996 when a dozen people died, among them some of the best climbers at the time.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I will put all those on my 'check it out list'
I sent him Henrietta Lacks last year - he liked it alot.
He told me about Edgar Sawtelle
I gave him Owen Meany years ago - He liked it but not like I did!

Have you read A Land Remembered? It is really very good. I spent some years in Fla and that added to it for me but even if no connection, I still would have loved it. You wont find it in Kindle tho. (I don't think)

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

I have not read that but TY for the recommendation

I read and liked The World According to Garp, (also John Irving) a loooong time ago and don't rermember much about the story. I reaaalllly liked Dune and the first sequel but then got away from sci fi.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I didn't read Dune for a long time....someone gave me the books ( it might have been the brother that stimulated this thread) and the books sat forgotten on the shelf..... planets...space travel... strange otherworld creatures.....nah, not for me. A too young wife, two kids --one with heart disease, one paycheck, no car. Best I remain rooted in the 'here and now'' -- I wasn't interested in science fiction.

But in a period of reading drought and significant illness, I caved in and read it. (I would have read toothpaste boxes -- I DID read toothpast boxes.) And I loved it for the fantastic tale that it was.....

Years later came the life-changing events of September 11. I read about people from distant lands, learned new vocabulary and heard about religious beliefs different from my own. All over the land, Americans gained insight and understanding about battle strategies and politics. Our son went to war. We learned new wors and terms-- I thought Jihad was a word Frank Herbert made up! I often thought about Dune during those times.

Time passed and there were crazy storms and I heard that glaciers were melting and fish disappearing (!!) Concerns about energy and exhausting our world's resources came to the forefront -- at least for me.

Again, I thought about Dune and its people and their politics, tribal laws, religion, and the struggle for water and conserving the planets resources -- and the struggle to preserve their ways without hatred and with equality. How easy it was to relate to the desert people of Dune waaaaay across the universe but not so easy to relate to the guy next door. Anyway, I think it should be required reading in our schools. The book(s) were before their time and had the capacity to stimulate thought and to teach many lessons in a non threatening way. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murphy,_North_Carolina

This message was edited Sep 6, 2011 9:14 PM

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

What a wonderful review! I think I'll go to the used book store and grab a few for my sons! (And wouldn't they like that for required reading rather than Scarlet Letter- aaarrggghhh_)

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Yes, that was painful!

(Debra) Garland, TX

Movies were made from four of the five fiction books, but I had the publications long before the film versions came out. :-)

Tales from Margaritaville by Jimmy Buffett (General short story fiction)

A Covenant with Death by Steven Becker (fiction)

For the Love of the Game by Michael Sharra (baseball fiction)

Contact by Carl Sagan (Science fiction)

The List of Adrian Messenger by Philip MacDonald (Mystery fiction)
Cooking as Therapy by Louis Parrish, M.D.

Multiple Intelligences by Howard Gardner

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Wow I will have to print all this for when my shelves go dry.

(Debra) Garland, TX

What did you decide on for your brother's birthday? :-)

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

The Art of Racing in the Rain
Flowers for Algernon
Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy (biography)
Devil at My Heels (he read
(I spent too much) but I am hoping to get them-- you can get loaner books via Kindle for a few weeks at a time. I am backed up in reading so have not asked yet.
He read Unbroken and Contact, and TWAT Garp, and the sis in law says 99 percent sure he read. The list of A. Messenger. She couldn't weigh in on many of them. I wanted that first IPAD read book to be a great experience.

I have all your recommendations on my list of 'to reads' - I think Into Thin Air will be next. Sigh....so little time...

Des Moines, IA(Zone 5a)

For this year's birthday, you might consider giving your brother:

1.) "Strange Wine" or "Deathbird Stories" by Harlan Ellison (odd science fiction of sorts)
2.) "Assassin's Apprentice" by Robin Hobb (a real good fantasy/medieval-ish story, and I'm not much of a fantasy genre fan; first book in a series)
3.) "Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism" by Naomi Klein (non-fiction journalistic exposť; pertains to U.S. politics and big business)
4.) "Far Side" cartoon collections :)

Those are just a few titles to toss into the pile. And I too enjoyed the book "Dune."

This message was edited May 22, 2012 1:20 AM

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