Our Gift Guide for Hard-To-Buy-For People
In the final part of our totally-and-completely-fail-proof-Christmas-shopping-guides-for-2013, here are our gift ideas for the people in your life who are tricky to shop for.
Your partner’s parents who you’re still getting to know
- Jamie Durie’s Edible Garden Design ($49.99) is a classy gift book for people who like gardening, cooking, design - or all three! (The book’s design which is inspired by Florence Broadhurst fabrics.)
- If the parents in question are culture nuts then there’s the re-released 1956 documentary, The Mystery Of Picasso ($29.95), from French director Henri-Georges Clouzot which shows Picasso in the act of creating paintings for the camera, most of which were subsequently destroyed so that they would only exist on film.
- Another great documentary is Searching For Sugar Man ($19.95), all about Rodriguez - the greatest ‘70s US rock icon who never was.
- Pulitzer Prize-winning writer and editor of The New Yorker David Remnick paints a portrait of rock legend Bruce Springsteen in We are Alive: A Portrait of Bruce Springsteen ($19.95).
- People & Planet is a social enterprise that exists to raise funds for and promote the work of more than 40 Australian charities and their 2014 diary ($22.95) is a great choice for the ethically minded.
- If your mother-in-law is someone who doesn’t mind a laugh at her expense then How to be a Good Mother-in-Law ($13.95) might be a warm gesture on your behalf.
The friend who has everything
- Dr. Brene Brown offers a powerful new vision in Daring Greatly ($22.99), the number 1 New York Times Bestseller, Oprah pick, and TED talk hit that encourages us to embrace vulnerability and imperfection.
- With similar goals in mind, though taking a different route, Domestic Sluttery: Cheat Your Way to the Good Life ($32.99) offers lifestyle tips to help readers live life to the full but with permission to make mistakes, to accept that you’re not perfect.
- Question Time! ($90) is a board game about Australian politics and political history that involves strategy, knowledge, luck, intuition and rat cunning.
- Award-winning wine writer Max Allen’s The History of Australian Wine: Stories from the Vineyard to the Cellar Door ($16.95,
was $49.99) tells the story of Australian wine during the entire twentieth century.
- And while you might think your friend has everything we bet they don’t have a knitted doll of Elvis Presley… But thanks to Carol Meldrum’s Knitted Icons: 25 Celebrity Doll Patterns ($6.95) - they could!
The child who doesn’t read
- An excellent real-life Australian novel for 9–12 year olds, John Marsden’s The Year My Life Broke ($12.99) is perfect for young cricket fans who normally pass books by.
- Inspired by Japanese Shinto Kumi-ki puzzles, Cubebots ($24.95) are brilliant, moveable robots made of beech wood.
- With easy-to-read headlines and simple explanations, It Can’t be True! ($24.99) is full of the most recent, verified facts and statistics full of facts that prove truth is stranger than fiction.
- This very sweet Flower Pressing Kit In A Tin ($19.95) provides you with everything you need to press your own flowers.
- A cynic meets an unlikely superhero in Kate DiCamillo’s, Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures ($19.95), a novel interspersed with comic-style graphic sequences and full-page illustrations by artist K. G. Campbell.
- Coral Tulloch’s The Journey ($19.95) is a unique concept of games, codes and interesting people, all combining to make a recipe to engage the imagination.
- Enlisting some of children’s best-known and loved illustrators McSweeney’s presents The Goods ($29.99), offering readers unremitting amusement with this literary funfair of games, puzzles, comics and other diversions
Your sibling’s new love interest
- Rock Country ($69.95,
was $75) is an entertaining and revealing romp through the story of Australian rock and pop told by those that lived it, performed it, and adored it.
- The beautifully designed A Practical Guide To Squatting ($24) from Larraine Henning shows readers how to pick locks, craft a solar oven using a pizza box, grow a community garden, build a swimming pool in an open foundatiom, and much more. For someone a bit adventurous!
- With its hip look and durable binding, this bike journal ($12.95) celebrates the awesomeness that is cycling.
- If you know the person you’re shopping for is a bit of a film connoisseur, Bonello Bertrand’s House of Pleasures ($34.95) is a lush, atmospheric look at the final days of an elegant, turn-of-the-century brothel. You can read more about it here.
- Inside Llewyn Davis ($21.95) is the soundtrack for the Coen brothers’s upcoming film and their first collaboration with T Bone Burnett since the much-loved O Brother, Where Art Thou?.
Your friend’s teenage children
- A book described as being ‘as narcissistic as it is self-loathing’, Actors Anonymous ($29.99) is written by obnoxious celebrity James Franco.
- Jeffrey Brown’s hilarious Darth Vader and Son comics are now available as a calendar for the coming year ($19.95).
- The Perks Of Being A Wallflower ($19.95) is a funny and touching coming-of-age story based on the beloved best-selling novel by Stephen Chbosky.
- Eri Shimatsuka’s Maija Isola: Art, Fabric, Marimekko ($45,
was $49.50) is a gorgeous book, featuring textile works from the leading Finnish designer, as well as details about her life.
- In More Than This ($27.95) the two-time Carnegie Medal winner Patrick Ness presents an enthralling and provocative new novel chronicling the story of a teen trapped in a crumbling, abandoned world.
- Let Me off at the Top!: My Classy Life and Other Musings ($32.95) is the very funny fake autobiography of fictional news reporter Ron Burgundy.
Your grandparents who have retired
- In December the crossword turns 100 and, to celebrate, the author of the ridiculously fun Puzzled, David Astle has created Cluetopia: The Story of 100 Years of the Crossword ($29.99). Dive into the archives with him as he handpicks a crossword clue per year, from scores of dusty periodicals, and weaves a mini-chapter around each one.
- Dog owners will likely enjoy the beautiful photography book, Beautiful Dogs ($19.99) by Caroline Coile & Andrew Perris. Other titles in this series include Beautiful Chickens, Beautiful Cows and Beautiful Horses.
- Patricia Edgar’s inspiring and entertaining In Praise of Ageing ($32.99) tells the stories of eight people who have lived well into their nineties and beyond.
- Set in England in the years leading up to the First World War, Downton Abbey ($24.95) is the story of the Crawley family, and their servants.
- Amateur naturalist and nature lover, Janine Burke, shares her passion for observing birds in Nest: The Art of Birds ($24.99).
- Umberto Eco leads us on an illustrated journey through all the invented of literature in The Book of Legendary Lands ($59.99), from Homer’s poems to contemporary science fiction.
- In the new Kerry Greenwood, Murder and Mendelssohn ($22.99), an orchestral conductor has been found dead and the delightfully incisive and sophisticated Miss Fisher is on the job.
- William Robinson: The Transfigured Landscape ($59.95,
was $75) includes all Robinson’s most admired works along with insightful texts by some of our finest writers.