Good ‘family’ reads are tops for holiday gift-giving

Out in Print

So, it’s a wrap.

Everything’s under paper and under the tree. You’re done with all your shopping, except for one person. Or two. Maybe four.

So what do you get for that hard-to-buy-for person who never likes anything? Well, as they say, a book is a present they’ll open again and again, so why not head to your local bookstore for these great gifts:

For the person who loves someone who doesn’t identify strictly as male-female will appreciate unwrapping “She He They Me” by Robyn Ryle this year. It’s a book that acts a bit like those old “choose-your-own-adventure” as it examines and explains gender, its definitions and the way it’s been perceived historically. Hint: this is fun, and it’s also a book for someone who’s questioning.

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If your giftee is exploring the ideas and limits of gender, you can’t go wrong by wrapping up “Nonbinary: Memoirs of Gender and Identity,” edited by Micah Rajunov and Scott Duane. This is a book filled with tales of those who’ve examined (or are examining) questions of gender, sexuality, age, and race.

For the child with two Mommies or two Daddies, and for the kids in that child’s preschool session, “The GayBCs” by M.L. Webb will make a great class gift. It’s the A-B-Cs, but with terms familiar to the LGBTQ community and their families, so it’s for them, too. Or it might make a great gift for the adult who still possesses the wonder of a child. Or for an adult, just because.

For the newlywed (or the about-to-be-wed), “The Gay Marriage Generation” by Peter Hart-Brinson is the book to give. It takes a look at how same-sex marriage became law across the country, and how it changed the way America looks at gay men and lesbians. The gay giftee might also like “Out of the Shadows: Reimagining Gay Men’s Lives” by Walt Odets in that same wrapped gift.

The person on your list who enjoys reading short stories will love “Every True Pleasure: LGBTQ Tales of North Carolina,” edited by Wilton Barnhardt. It’s absolutely filled with tales from the South and from the heart.

For the parent of someone who’s come out this year, consider giving “Embracing the Journey” by Greg and Lynn McDonald, with Beth Jusino, foreword by Greg McDonald Jr. It’s a guide, really, for Christian parents who learn that their child is gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender and how it fits with their spiritual beliefs.

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The movie buff on your list will love reading “Hollywood Chinese: The Chinese in American Feature Films” by Arthur Dong. This beautifully illustrated book tells the story of Chinese and Chinese American actors from the first films shot in Chinatown, to modern times and contemporary film professionals. How can you go wrong?

For the giftee who is searching for new meaning in life, wrap up “My Buddha is Pink: Buddhism for the Modern Homosexual” by Richard Harrold. It’s a book of essays on being a gay Buddhist and reconciling old beliefs with a new way of mindfulness and fulfillment in a new lifestyle.

For the lover of music, feminism, and fierce women, “No Walls and the Recurring Dream” by Ani Di Franco will make a perfect gift. It’s the story of Di Franco’s first 30 years on earth, her activism, her life and her music.

If you’ve got a kid on your gift list who’s wrestling with issues of sexuality, consider “Zenobia July” by Lisa Bunker. It’s the story of a young girl who used to live as a boy but decides to live as the girl she knows she is. But will the other kids at her new school ever accept her as she really is?

And now the homework:

Books change, release dates change, things get canceled, none of this is brain surgery or set in concrete. If you have any questions, need more ideas or need help finding things, be sure to ask your local booksellers. They’re the ones wearing invisible SuperHero logos because they know things and they know how to make your giftee smile.

Seriously, they’re just that good.

Season’s Readings!

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