≡ Menu

My Bookish Birthday Wishlist

My Bookish Birthday Wishlist post image

Today is my 24th birthday! And what do I want? Books!

Now, I’m not much of a new book buyer. It’s probably blasphemous to say that, but it’s true. I’m much happier perusing used book stores or seeing what kinds of cheap reads I can snag online rather than getting them new. If I do buy new, I almost always wait for the paperback and then try to use as many coupons and deals as I can. After spending 19 years as a student, I’m still cheap.

But since today is my birthday, I thought it’d be fun to come up with a list of books I would love to go out and buy new for myself for my birthday, right now, because a birthday is a perfect excuse to buy something slightly frivolous or extravagant:

Clay Shirkey’s Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age looks awesome. I really want to read this one. Actually, I’d love any books by Clay Shirkey – his backlist includes Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations, for example.

Because I’ve got a start on it, I want everything that Tracy Kidder has written. I loved Mountains Beyond Mountains and can’t read to get through the rest of his backlist. By some stroke of odd coincidence, I already have three of his books in hardcover because I found them used over the last couple years. I’d get myself the rest of the collection as a gift.

The Yahoo! Style Guide: The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World because I’m doing more web writing and the sheer size of this book calls to me.

Apartment Therapy, a blog I just found, has a design book out: Apartment Therapy Presents: Real Homes, Real People, Hundreds of Design Solutions. It looks beautiful!

I was exploring around the Chronicle Books website and came across this Ticket Stub Diary. I love to collect stubs and fortunes and little paper momentos, but usually lose them – this would be perfect.

I read Waiting for Columbus last year and thought it was great. The author was kind enough to send me a signed copy that I got to giveaway – how I wish I could have kept it for myself!

I also want the complete Harry Potter series in hardcover. My family has one full set that we bought and fought over the day each came out. I’ve been collecting a set in paperback that’s still not complete. I want to trash that and start over with a pristine set all my own.

I came across The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working: The Four Forgotten Needs That Energize Great Performance by Tony Schwartz a few weeks ago, and have been curious about it ever since.

Next is everything by Henry Jenkins. He’s an academic that studies journalism and participatory culture, and I seem to love almost everything he says. Right now I’m coveting my own copies of Convergence Culture and Fans, Bloggers, and Gamers.

I also just finished reading Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business by Neil Postman, and now want one of his other books, Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology.

The final book I’m coveting is The Book of Awesome by Neil Pasricha, which is from the blog 1000 Awesome Things. Funny story with this one — I actually did buy myself a new, hardcover of this book because I love the blog so darn much. And then I gave it away to my sister for a college graduation present because she is one of the most awesome people I know. So, I still don’t have The Book of Awesome for myself.

And the Giveaway!

I skipped doing a giveaway for my blogiversary, but I’m excited and want to do one now.

Because I think birthdays are awesome, I’ve decided that I’ll be giving away a NEW copy of The Book of Awesome to say thanks to all of my awesome readers. To enter, just leave a comment here sharing one thing you think is awesome (and saying “Birthdays!” doesn’t count because I already did!). Also, make sure you leave your e-mail in the form or in your comment.

The giveaway is open internationally, but with a catch. If you live in the US or Canada, I’ll ship the book to you from Amazon. If you live internationally, I’ll give you an Amazon (or other bookstore) gift certificate for the same price as the book, then just ask you to purchase it yourself to help keep shipping costs down. I think that will work. If not, I’ll work out something with an international winner.

Are there any special books you’ve been coveting that you’re waiting for a special occasion to buy? Are you more of a new or used book kind of person?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • bermudaonion (Kathy) July 8, 2010, 5:45 am

    Happy Birthday, Kim! Don’t enter me since I have the book.

    I’m coveting The Cookbook Collector and Diamond Ruby – I’m sure I’ll buy them as soon as I see them.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:50 pm

      Kathy: I read a good review of The Cookbook Collector, I think. I hope you get them soon!

  • Lenore July 8, 2010, 6:12 am

    Happy birthday! I think my cats are awesome 😉 Was that too obvious an answer?

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:50 pm

      Lenore: Not at all. I think my cat is awesome too 🙂

  • Anastasia July 8, 2010, 6:17 am

    Happy birthday! 😀

    I used to be a buy-new-books sort of person (with big used book splurges at the FOTL book sale), but then I have to give it up when I needed to save money more than spend. So now I just bother the folks at my library to buy certain new books I want and I get them first when they come in– so it all works out!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:51 pm

      Anastasia: I should bother the library for books more. I love used book sales so much — that’s my biggest downfall.

  • Trisha July 8, 2010, 6:41 am

    I agree that birthdays are awesome; when April comes around, I tend to celebrate the entire month. Also, I give you a lot of credit for just making a list for your birthday; I went nuts and splurged on a ridiculous amount of books for mine. Of course, I don’t regret doing it, so maybe I can convince you to just go out and buy all those books for yourself. ; )

    No need to enter me in the giveaway.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:52 pm

      Trisha: I had a mini splurge a few days ago — B&N had a clearance sale so I got 9 books for $30. None of these, but some fun looking random ones. I got some birthday money, so I might grab a few of these too.

  • Amanda July 8, 2010, 6:49 am

    Happy birthday! YOU are awesome. 😀 But you don’t need to enter me for the contest because I have WAY too many books right now and I’m trying to get rid of stuff, not acquire. 🙂

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:53 pm

      Amanda: Lol, thanks! I shouldn’t be acquiring things either since I have move in about a month too!

  • Scott July 8, 2010, 6:51 am

    Happy birthday! As for something awesome, I have to say hiking (with a handy field guide) is pretty awesome.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:53 pm

      Scott: Great thing that is awesome 🙂 I haven’t been hiking in quite awhile.

  • Amy July 8, 2010, 7:07 am

    Happy birthday!! I am way too much of a buy new books person. Not a good habit. Need to cut back. A lot. Anyway, those are all great books, especially the Tracy Kidder ones. I LOVE Mountains Beyond Mountains, but then, I LOVE Paul Farmer! He is seriously awesome. No need to enter me in your giveaway. Or if you do, consider it an entry for yourself keeping the book as a birthday present being as you want a copy 😀

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:54 pm

      Amy: Paul Farmer is awesome. I’m amazed at the schedule he keeps up — there’s no way I could do that.

  • Alessandra July 8, 2010, 7:20 am

    Happy birthday! Just this morning I visited the biggest, fanciest bookshop in my hometown. Oh-my-goodness so many, many books. Books piled everywhere – new, shiny, bright, awesome copies! I managed to exercise restrain and didn’t buy anything, but that’s mostly because I’m like you, I’m cheap. Also, books tend to be pretty expensive in Italy, especially hardcovers (like, 16-20 euros a copy). But I love spending time in bookshops anyway, and staring at the pretty books to my heart’s content. Then I come home empty-handed, but sort of happy anyway.

    Some books I’m coveting:
    -Bright Star (collection of love letters written by John Keats to his lover – as per the movie which has come out recently)
    -Meine freie Deutsche Jugend by Claudia Rusch (semi-autobiographical story of growing up in East Germany)
    -Rotkaeppchen muss weinen (LittleRedRidingHood must cry – coming-of-age story and retelling of the fairy tale – even though I have the feeling it’s going to be a story about child abuse)
    -an Italian steampunk novel which is a re-telling of Alice in Wonderland

    I’ll stop here. No need to enter me in the giveaway, I just felt the need to be dorky about books. Plus my own birthday is next week.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:56 pm

      Alessandra: I love looking at new books, at stores, all piled up and on the shelves. It’s just lovely. Bright Star sounds like a good book!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:56 pm

      Also, happy birthday next week!

  • Kathleen P July 8, 2010, 7:28 am

    Happy, happy birthday! I think reading outside in the morning is awesome!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:56 pm

      Kathleen: That is awesome. I can’t wait until I have a porch to sit on and read outside.

  • Fyrefly July 8, 2010, 7:38 am

    No need to enter me in the giveaway, but Happy Birthday!

    I’m a huge used-book (and paperback) person, primarily due to financial and shelving constraints. Like Amanda, I rely pretty heavily on the library for new releases I want to read before they come out in paperback.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:58 pm

      Fyrefly: Thanks! I actually sort of like the way paperbacks look on the shelf better, at least my shelves since I have so many and hardcovers look odd to me (and take up too much room). If I can find them used though, that’s cool.

  • Christina July 8, 2010, 7:44 am

    No need to enter me in the giveaway, Kim. I just wanted to stop by and say Happy Birthday!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:58 pm

      Christina: Thanks!

  • Helen Murdoch July 8, 2010, 7:45 am

    I think my daughter is awesome. Too sappy? Ok, I choose reading in the shade at the beach where I can smell the sea salt, feel sand between my toes, and hear the waves.

    I am definitely a new book buyer, but am doing WAY less of it now that I work in a library. I have no one particular book that I am coveting.

    helen (at) helensbookblog (dot) com

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:58 pm

      Helen: No, not too sappy at all 🙂 I think my mom is awesome, too. Also beach reading is awesome.

  • Helen Murdoch July 8, 2010, 7:46 am

    I am lame. I got so focused on answering your questions that I forgot to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Mine is coming up on the 20th so I’ve got to get going on organizing a give away

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:59 pm

      Helen: Lol, thanks! Happy birthday to you, soon!

  • Esme July 8, 2010, 8:21 am

    Happy Birthday I did not know you are a July birthday-I am next Thursday. Celebrate and Enjoy.


    • Kim July 9, 2010, 10:59 pm

      Esme: Thank you! Happy birthday to you soon, too!

  • Stephanie July 8, 2010, 9:14 am

    Happy birthday! I think my cats are awesome, all five of them. They warm me, love on me, annoy the HECK out of me from time to time, and provide me with a lot of companionship. I’d miss them terribly if I didn’t have them. 🙂 Happy birthday, I hope your day is wonderful!!!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:00 pm

      Stephanie: I agree with you 100 percent on cats, mine is exactly the same way. I just got her like 7 months ago, and already I can’t imagine being without her.

  • Vicki July 8, 2010, 10:08 am

    Happy Birthday! I think unsolicited “I love you”s are awesome! My almost 3 year old has out of the blue come up and said I love you a couple times in the past few days and it just makes everything so much better.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:01 pm

      Vicki: That’s another great one, I definitely agree.

  • Marie July 8, 2010, 11:14 am

    Happy Birthday. I hope you have a wonderful day.

    I’d say winning a book that you’ve had your eye on for some time is pretty awesome. 😉 So is coming home after a long trip and sleeping in your own comfy bed.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:02 pm

      Marie: Lol, yes, I agree. I’ve been traveling a lot lately and love coming home to my own bed.

  • Andi July 8, 2010, 12:07 pm

    I always have a list of books I want to buy if I’m being frivolous, and you’re right that birthdays are perfect occasions for such purchases. I hope you have a very happy, bookish birthday!

    Now, what do I think is awesome? A sweet, fuzzy puppy all curled up on a pillow. Mine has taken to sleeping on the floor beside the bed on a body pillow and a nest of my clothes. Makes for furry clothes, but it’s still so cute and AWESOME!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:03 pm

      Andi: Awww, that sounds adorable! Cute puppy 🙂

  • Anna July 8, 2010, 12:15 pm

    No need to enter me. I just wanted to wish you a Happy Birthday!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:04 pm

      Anna: Thanks!

  • Care July 8, 2010, 6:57 pm

    Happy Birthday! 🙂

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:04 pm

      Care: Thank you!

  • monica @ paper bridges July 8, 2010, 7:58 pm

    winning a book I want to read is awesome. hope I win and happy birthday to you.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:05 pm

      Monica: I think winning books is awesome too 🙂 Giving them away is kind of fun, also!

  • Nicole July 8, 2010, 9:52 pm

    Happy Birthday Kim!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:05 pm

      Nicole: Thank you!

  • sherry July 8, 2010, 10:34 pm

    Happy birthday!

    I think waterfalls are awesome.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:05 pm

      Sherry: That’s a great one, I totally agree!

  • softdrink July 8, 2010, 10:52 pm

    Happy Birthday!! Hope you got to do something fun!

    Books are awesome (duh). Goats are awesome, too. 😀

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:06 pm

      softdrink: Thank you, I did. I went out to dinner and had margaritas, then had some birthday peach pie. And yes, goats are awesome 🙂

  • Page July 9, 2010, 4:50 am

    Libraries are awesome (and I work in one, but they’ve always been Awesome)

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:06 pm

      Page: Agreed. I’ve always loved libraries.

  • Monica (aka monnibo) July 9, 2010, 12:15 pm

    Happy Birthday!!!! YOU are awesome! With all the blogging and the Blog Improvement Project.

    And I guess if you want something else, cats that cuddle. Or just cuddly animals. They are awesome.

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:07 pm

      Monica: Awww, thanks 🙂 Cuddly animals are awesome.

  • Jenny July 9, 2010, 6:29 pm

    You always find the coolest nonfiction books! I’m so impressed. Also, happy happy birthday! No need to enter me for the giveaway – I hope your day was perfect!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:08 pm

      Jenny: Thanks! This is a great book. I can’t wait to get it myself. I did have a great birthday.

  • diana mack July 9, 2010, 9:18 pm

    awesome is when you are late for work and you hit all the green lights, miss all the buses, there are no pedestrians, no road work and the person walkingthe dog smiles at you!

    • Kim July 9, 2010, 11:08 pm

      Diana: That is awesome. I forget all about that!

  • charley July 10, 2010, 3:09 pm

    Happy Birthday (a few days late)! And no need to enter me in the giveaway, if it’s still going on. I visit the AT site occasionally – I love the pictures! I checked the 8 Step Home Cure out of my library a while back. I didn’t commit to the process, but I got some great tips about small apartment living. As for coveted books, yes – I would like my own copy of David McCullough’s The Great Bridge because it’s a beast and would take me a long time to read. And to answer your 2nd question, I prefer buying used books, partly for the knowledge that they have a history.

    • Kim July 13, 2010, 8:45 pm

      charley: I love Apartment Therapy, even if I’m not convinced I could ever pull of something like they do. I’ll look for the 8 Step Home Cure — I’m excited to decorate a new place when I move in a few weeks.

  • Jeanne July 12, 2010, 9:01 am

    I loved reading Waiting For Columbus but will gladly mail it back to fulfill your birthday wish, and as someone who shares your birthday, I think you should accept!

    • Kim July 13, 2010, 8:45 pm

      Jeanne: Thank you! I sent you an e-mail back about this 🙂

  • Valerie July 12, 2010, 10:59 pm

    Happy Belated Birthday, Kim! Your blog is awesome :-).

    I also frequently buy used books. It’s not that I’m cheap, but that with our budget going so many places (mortgage, kids, car payment, etc, etc) this way there’s more “bang for the buck”. I suppose I could borrow from the library more often than I already do, but I like reading what I want when I feel like I want; not according to their due dates.

    Anyway, enough rambling. Here’s to a good year ahead of you!

    • Kim July 13, 2010, 8:46 pm

      Valerie: I think I buy used a lot for that reason — it’s easier to get more of the books I want for less money. I feel pressure with the library too, especially when I have a million books out like I do now (ok, just 10 books, but still!).

  • Jennifer July 15, 2010, 9:46 am

    Well, you are pretty awesome for hosting this giveaway. But other things I think are awesome: home cooked dinners with people you love (i had one last night and I’m still feeling all warm inside about it this morning). When I was little my parents spoiled me with new books frequently but now that I buy out of my own bank accounts I’m a lot more frugal and tend to borrow from the library or buy used. But still, I ask for new books whenever I get the chance: I just love watching my personal book collection grow.

  • Kim July 15, 2010, 4:44 pm

    Jennifer: Homecooked dinners with loved ones are great. It’s been to hot here in Madison to cook for a few days, but I’m hoping to do that soon too.