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Gift Ideas for New Graduates

By Kristin Masters. May 17, 2012. 5:06 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Rare Book Gift Ideas

May is a month for new beginnings, as countless graduates begin a new journey in life. This important milestone requires special recognition. The best graduation gifts are those that the graduate can appreciate for years to come—items whose value increases over time and that the graduate can come to appreciate in new ways. Rare books often make ideal gifts for high-school and university graduates. A few tips for choosing exactly the right title:

  • Select an author or genre that the graduate already enjoys. For instance, a lover of fantasy novels would appreciate works by JRR Tolkien, while a student athlete may prefer the biography of an inspiring sports star.

  • Consider the graduate’s career plans. For the aspiring medical or veterinary student, look to vintage biology and anatomy titles. For the soon-to-be chef, opt for a classic cookbook.
  • Choose a title that can truly be a foundation for a wonderful personal library or rare book collection. Collections may consist of modern first editions, a single legendary  author, or a specific subject area.
  • Opt for a book that isn’t extremely fragile. College students tend to be more transient, and multiple moves aren’t always the best for a rare book’s overall condition.
  • If your graduate will be taking time for a gap year or other travel, consider a book that evokes the part of the world the graduate will be visiting. For example, travel writing by Mark Twain remains both entertaining and enlightening for those seeking an experience abroad.
  • Select a book that the graduate can tell is inherently special. Signed editions are often good choices, because one need not be a rare book collector to understand that a signature can add to a book’s value.
  • Sometimes the best way to welcome  adulthood is to remember childhood. Classic children’s books are a lovely way to remind your graduate of how far he or she has come.
What was the best rare book you received as a gift? What was the occasion?

Kristin Masters
Master Content Brain. You think it, she writes it, no good thought remains unposted. Sprinkles pixie dust on Google+, newsletters, blog, facebook, twitter and just about everything else.


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