Whether you know someone who reads every book on the best seller list, or you have a friend who just enjoys flipping through photographs, we’ve rounded up the must-reads for everyone on your list.
Photos courtesy of Chapters Indigo
1. Escapology: Modern Cabins, Cottages and Retreats by Colin McAllister and Justin Ryan
Warning: you may not want to give this away! Tv personalities and interior designers Colin and Justin have found some of the most stunning cabins in the world and put them all into one beautiful book. Flip through the pages of weekend escapes on the waterfront, rustic mountain getaway, and retreats in the forest, and you’ll instantly be hit with a sense of calm and wonder. Plus, this book features practical design advice for your own little piece of paradise. Buy here.
2. Beyond the Trees by Adam Shoalts
Give someone the gift of adventure with this story of a man’s solo trek through Canada’s wilderness. Adam Shoalts sets off on his journey in Edge Plain, Yukon Territory, and wanders his way over to Baker Lake, Nunavut. Follow along through the raging rivers, shifting ice floes, and hurricane-like winds as Adam takes on Mother Nature and ultimately pushes his limits in pursuit of adventure. Buy here.
3. How to Catch a Mole by Marc Hammer
Follow the stories of Marc Hammer as he takes you through his life as a mole-catcher in the Welsh countryside. The little but powerful mammals taught him life-changing lessons about accepting change, living amongst nature, and finding contentment, and now he’s sharing all of them. A little bit of nature, a little bit of animal fun, and a little life advice—it’s really the perfect gift no matter who you wrap it up for. Buy here.
4. The Group of Seven Reimagined edited by Karen Schauber
Next year marks the 100th anniversary of the Group of Seven’s formation. Through stunning paintings of Canada’s landscape, the seven artists shaped the way many of us see the country. This book not only shares 21 of the most famous works of art, but draws on award-winning authors to craft a short-narrative about the plot, setting, and emotion of each. This coffee table book is perfect for anyone who loves and appreciates the beauty of Canada. Buy here.
5. Ultimate Veg: Easy & Delicious Meals for Everyone by Jamie Oliver
Plant-based eating is all the rage, no matter what diet you follow. If you know someone who likes to follow food trends, this collection of vegetarian recipes by Jamie Oliver will become their new go-to. The ingredient lists are full of real, whole foods, the directions are simple, and if all goes according to plan, the meals will be delicious. They won’t even miss the meat! Buy here.
6. Lonely Planet: Dark Skies by Lonely Planet and Valerie Stimac
This one is for the stargazers. There’s nothing more amazing than a dark sky full of hundreds of thousands of twinkling lights. Curious minds will love the six sections of this book, as each helps plan a star-studded adventure. From the best international spots to set up a telescope, to the top research facilities in the world, this is the ultimate handbook to the night sky. Buy here.
7. Educated by Tara Westover
This is one of the most buzzed-about books of the year and for a good reason. The emotional memoir takes you through the journey Tara Westover calls life, starting with her extremely sheltered upbringing void of any public education. Then, at the age of 17, it all changed. Tara went on to learn more in school and earn more degrees than some of us can even imagine is possible, winning scholarships along the way. It’s the perfect read for anyone who needs a little motivation or inspiration in their life. Buy here.
8. Steve McCurry. Animals by Reuel Golden and Steve McCurry
The relationship between humans and animals is something that never stops evolving — from the deer in our backyards, to the fish in our lakes, there’s so much to understand. Steve McCurry tries to figure it out through beautiful photographs. This collection shows a diverse collection of animals from all over the world and their interactions with us at different moments in time. Anyone with a love for animals, travel, or photography will appreciate this book. Buy here.
9. Cocktail Codex By Alex Day
Don’t know the difference between a martini and a sidecar? This manual takes all the confusing liquor language and simplifies it into six easy base recipes. Give this to your entertainer friend—preferably someone you see often for happy hour. After a read through, they’ll have all the tips and tricks they need to be the unofficial bartender of the group. Buy here.
10. The Wonders of Nature by Ben Hoare
From jaguars to minerals, there’s a history behind everything, and you’re about to learn it (or at least 100 things). This easy-to-read storybook clarifies facts from fiction and will help you better understand some of the everyday things we take for granted on our planet. We suggest sharing this with a curious human (kid or adult), or a nature-lover. Buy here.
11. The Pioneer Woman Cooks: The New Frontier by Ree Drummond
Who’s ready to eat? This cookbook is full of 112 new recipes from the sweetest southerner there ever was—Ree Drummond. Her dishes bring back memories of long weekends and big family meals at the cottage. Expect easy-to-make options that don’t sacrifice flavour, like Instant Pot Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal, so it’s the perfect gift for cooks of all levels. Buy here.
12. How To: Absurd Scientific Advice by Randall Munroe
Everyone needs a good laugh once in a while, and this book will make it happen. This is the world’s most completely useless self-help guide, which means it’s the perfect Secret Santa present. Need some help figuring out how to cross a river? Want to learn how to power your house or cottage? Don’t expect to learn the real answers to any of those things here — but you can expect some insane ones. Buy here.