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Holiday Gift Giving: Books, the Perfect Present

Page Turners

By Elizabeth M. Marshall

The traditional gift-giving time of year is fast approaching, and books are the perfect gift for many of us here in San Miguel de Allende. Our wonderful town boasts several quality bookstores with a good selection of not only books, but also small gift items.

Additionally, the annual Literary Sala Book Fair will be held Saturday, December 5, at the Hotel Aldea (upstairs), 11am–2pm. The fair will feature a variety of books including plenty of fiction, some memoir, and books about Mexico and San Miguel de Allende. Buyers will also discover adjunct gift items such as cards, small art prints, maps, jewelry and more—produced by the authors themselves. Agnes Olive will be there with her book Letters from Pakistan. Tasha Paley will also be present with her children’s books, as well as Margaret Nash with the hilarious volume Rebellious Aging – A Self Help Guide for the Old Hippie at Heart.

La Biblioteca’s Used Book Sale on Thursday mornings is definitely worth checking out. Here I found a totally pristine copy of The Chicago Manual of Style for 40 pesos.

The Biblioteca Tienda sells an interesting selection of English and Spanish books including fiction, non-fiction, and travel, as well as lovely and colorful coffee table volumes that not only please the eye but also the spirit.

Garrison & Garrison Books on Hidalgo 26 in the plaza carries a wide variety of books in many genres, including children’s books such as Danny the Champion of the World by Roald Dahl. Reviewer Leah Nayer includes Danny in her list of the Top Five Children’s Literature that Adults Love. “The bond between father and son is so powerful and sincerely written that the love between them might just spill out of the page and run down your face in the shape of a teardrop.”

Camino de Silvestre at Zacateros 46 is a delightful shop specializing in hummingbirds. Here is where birders will find books on birds, as well as bird supplies, bird-themed china, and gift items. Silvestre also carries a careful selection of other titles including some cookbooks written by Diana Kennedy who spent a “lifetime” living and cooking in Mexico. I have long held Ms. Kennedy as one of my favorite chefs and, as an owner of many of her knowledgeable tomes, I highly recommend any of her books for people who love the artful life of cooking.

Librería la Deriva located at Fábrica Aurora sells  many kinds of books including those on anthropology, archaeology, deco architecture, art film and photography, kitchens, and graphic design, as well as books for children, gardeners, literature lovers, artists, and travelers.

Enjoy the fun of holiday shopping, and while you’re at it, treat yourself to a book or three as well!


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