Great Gift Books for Adults & Teens 2018

Click here for a complete listing including Biographies, Cookbooks, Young Adult, and Audiobooks. 


  A Place for Us

A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza

An American Muslim family is torn apart in the struggle between tradition and modernity. A compassionate tale of identity and belonging.

  There There

There There by Tommy Orange

A kaleidoscopic look at Native American life in Oakland, California. An eye-opening and moving novel worth the challenge.


Circe by Madeline Miller

Hear the Greek myths retold from the perspective of one of its denizens. A very new take from a very old voice; for those who like their fiction to be otherworldly.

  The Last Watchman of Old Cairo

The Last Watchman of Old Cairo by Michael David Lukas

An American student with a Jewish mother and Muslim father explores his family’s tangled roots in the history of Cairo's ancient synagogue.

  The Cabin at the End of the World

The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay

A blinding tale of survival and sacrifice that matches the power of belief with man’s potential for unbridled violence. Psychological horror that will keep you up at night.

  The Great Believers

The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai

A dazzling novel of friendship and redemption in the face of tragedy and loss set in 1980s Chicago and contemporary Paris. Shortlisted for the National Book Award and written by a Chicagoan.

  Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Honeyman’s endearing debut is part comic novel, part emotional thriller, and part love story. For those who enjoy off-beat novels and unique characters. .

  The Lake on Fire

The Lake on Fire by Rosellen Brown

Two young Jewish immigrants run away from home to make their way in the seething, harsh tumult of 19th-century Chicago. A beautifully written epic that effortlessly translates to today.


Transcription by Kate Atkinson

A dramatic story of WWII espionage, betrayal, and loyalty. For those who like a little (or a lot) of suspense with their historical fiction.

  A Dog's Way Home

A Dog's Way Home by W. Bruce Cameron

A beautifully told, charming tale that explores the unbreakable bond between us and our pets. For the animal lovers in your life.



  The Library Book

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

An engaging, casual history of librarians, libraries and a famous one that burned down. For bibliophiles and those who love to learn about lesser-known moments in history.

  Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine

Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine by Alan Lightman

One of our most reliable interpreters of science offers a slender book of ruminations that venture wide and deep. For those who enjoy wading into science and philosophy.

  I See Life Through Rosé-Colored Glasses: True Stories and Confessions

I See Life Through Rosé-Colored Glasses: True Stories and Confessions by Lisa Scottoline & Francesca Serritella

The bestselling mother daughter duo share heartfelt and humorous moments from their lives. Witty and full of down-to-earth wisdom.

  The Art of the Wasted Day

The Art of the Wasted Day by Patricia Hampl

A spirited inquiry into the lost value of leisure and daydream. For those who long for a life without schedules and see the appeal in letting go.

  21 Lessons for the 21st Century

21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari

A probing and visionary investigation into today’s most urgent issues as we move into the uncharted territory of the future. Provocative and thoughtful.

  John Singer Sargent and Chicago's Gilded Age

John Singer Sargent and Chicago's Gilded Age by Annelise K. Madsen

A beautiful art book to accompany the Art Institute's exhibition devoted to the American portraitist. Illuminates Chicago's art scene at the turn-of-the-century.


Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents by Pete Souza

Presidential photographer turned political commentator Souza presents a series of visual juxtapositions that throw "shade" on the current administration.

  • Novelist Plus



    Use Novelist Plus to find book recommendations, series information, and readalikes. Accessible from home with your Wilmette or Kenilworth library card.


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