2019 Gift Guide

This year’s gift guide is much shorter than last year’s since I’m not doing Blogmas this year. So it’s just a small list of gifts for stationery and book lovers. If you want more ideas, you might want to check out last year’s Blogmas overview, or the gift guide from two years ago.

For the stationery lover

Notebooks

When will this not be on my list? Pen and paper is coming back. More people go back to taking notes on paper and the bullet journalling craze isn’t over yet. There’s something about going analog, and bullet journalling also invites creativity. A notebook is (literally) a blank canvas and the receiver can choose what to use it for: a traditional journal, a bullet journal, or any other type of notebook.

If you’re looking for a gorgeous (personalised) notebook, check out Citrus Book Bindery. If you’re looking for cute designs from Asia, Notebook Therapy has a great selection.

12 uses for your empty notebook

Benu Limited Edition pen

Benu has released another limited edition, a Supreme model with a Christmas green colour and sparkles. I have this model and I love it. It’s big, but light, and each one is differently cast. The barrel is layered throughout the casting process to create depth. I can look at my pen the whole day and still discover more details. I’m sure it’s the same with this one. The Schmidt nib is smooth right out of the box. The nib is a real fine, even finer than my Waterman fine.

Diamine Inkvent Calendar

I know it’s a bit late, but maybe now is the perfect time to buy an advent calendar as they’re discounted. I’ve seen the Diamine inkvent calendar discounted in several stores and it’s a great gift. It includes 25 new colours, winter-themed. The 25th bottle is a full 30 ml bottle while the others are 7 ml, little more than sample size. It’s the perfect gift if you don’t know which colour the receiver likes, because there’s so many in there! People have been asking for inkvent calendars for years and Diamine is the first company to create one. I hope many more will follow.

I have one and you’ll see pics of the inks as I open each door on Instagram, so don’t forget to follow me!

For the book lover

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

The Starless Sea is my most anticipated book of the year. I loved The Night Circus and this one is a story about stories, a love letter to books. Definitely worth checking out if you or the receiver loves fantasy.

Summary
Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont when he discovers a mysterious book hidden in the stacks. As he turns the pages, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, key collectors, and nameless acolytes, he reads something strange: a story from his own childhood. Bewildered by this inexplicable book and desperate to make sense of how his own life came to be recorded, Zachary uncovers a series of clues–a bee, a key, and a sword–that lead him to a masquerade party in New York, to a secret club, and through a doorway to an ancient library, hidden far below the surface of the earth.

What Zachary finds in this curious place is more than just a buried home for books and their guardians–it is a place of lost cities and seas, lovers who pass notes under doors and across time, and of stories whispered by the dead. Zachary learns of those who have sacrificed much to protect this realm, relinquishing their sight and their tongues to preserve this archive, and also those who are intent on its destruction.

Together with Mirabel, a fierce, pink-haired protector of the place, and Dorian, a handsome, barefoot man with shifting alliances, Zachary travels the twisting tunnels, darkened stairwells, crowded ballrooms, and sweetly-soaked shores of this magical world, discovering his purpose–in both the mysterious book and in his own life.

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

A fantasy novel with Mexican folklore. It’s probably not something you’ll read every day, but it’ll blow your mind. It’s the perfect gift for the adventurous book lover.

Summary
The Jazz Age is in full swing, but Casiopea Tun is too busy cleaning the floors of her wealthy grandfather’s house to listen to any fast tunes. Nevertheless, she dreams of a life far from her dusty small town in southern Mexico. A life she can call her own.

Yet this new life seems as distant as the stars, until the day she finds a curious wooden box in her grandfather’s room. She opens it—and accidentally frees the spirit of the Mayan god of death, who requests her help in recovering his throne from his treacherous brother. Failure will mean Casiopea’s demise, but success could make her dreams come true.

In the company of the strangely alluring god and armed with her wits, Casiopea begins an adventure that will take her on a cross-country odyssey from the jungles of Yucatán to the bright lights of Mexico City—and deep into the darkness of the Mayan underworld.

Steel Crow Saga by Paul Krueger

When I first saw the pitch of this book, Pokemon was the only thing that caught my eye. It didn’t even matter what the rest of pitch was, I was already sold. I’ve been waiting for a book like this, and I think many who enjoyed Pokemon will love this as well.

Summary
Four destinies collide in a unique fantasy world of war and wonders, where empire is won with enchanted steel and magical animal companions fight alongside their masters in battle.

A soldier with a curse
Tala lost her family to the empress’s army and has spent her life avenging them in battle. But the empress’s crimes don’t haunt her half as much as the crimes Tala has committed against the laws of magic… and her own flesh and blood.

A prince with a debt
Jimuro has inherited the ashes of an empire. Now that the revolution has brought down his kingdom, he must depend on Tala to bring him home safe. But it was his army who murdered her family. Now Tala will be his redemption—or his downfall.

A detective with a grudge
Xiulan is an eccentric, pipe-smoking detective who can solve any mystery—but the biggest mystery of all is her true identity. She’s a princess in disguise, and she plans to secure her throne by presenting her father with the ultimate prize: the world’s most wanted prince.

A thief with a broken heart
Lee is a small-time criminal who lives by only one law: Leave them before they leave you. But when Princess Xiulan asks her to be her partner in crime—and offers her a magical animal companion as a reward—she can’t say no, and soon finds she doesn’t want to leave the princess behind.

This band of rogues and royals should all be enemies, but they unite for a common purpose: to defeat an unstoppable killer who defies the laws of magic. In this battle, they will forge unexpected bonds of friendship and love that will change their lives—and begin to change the world.

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