It can be a struggle to pick out a gift for a graduate. While they’re surely receiving tons of post-grad advice from parents, older siblings, and just about everyone else they talk to, they’re probably more likely to listen to that advice if it’s bound and available on their bookshelf for reference any time they need it.
A book is an ideal gift for graduates because it helps them reflect on where they have been and where they are going. A book can be sentimental, practical and entertaining. If you need ideas for the perfect book to give for an upcoming high school or college graduation, look no further. These thoughtful, inspiring graduation gifts will be read and reread, long after the pomp and circumstance has ended.
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By: Andy Boyle
"A hilarious guide to help young workers not be idiots....The book is, truly, a guide to being an adult in the modern age." --Chicago Tribune
The life-survival guide you didn't know you needed. But you do.
As any current or former twenty-something knows, adulthood can be kind of awkward because no one tells you what to expect. Most people spend a decade or more figuring out the unwritten rules of life, the hard way.
Does Andy Boyle have everything figured out? No. But the honest and good-natured advice in this genuinely helpful book will help any newly minted adult get through the hard parts faster, guaranteed. (Note: not literally guaranteed.)
* "Friend Zone," "Adulting," and Other Things to Stop Saying
* Should I Get Back with My Ex? (Spoiler: No)
* Networking Like a Not Gross Person
* Failing Isn't Failure, and Other Mostly Good Rules to Live By
* Don't Be Creepy
Perfect for anyone who's ready to graduate into adulthood, or at least out of their mom's basement.
By: Stephen R. Covey
One of the most inspiring and impactful books ever written, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has captivated readers for 25 years. It has transformed the lives of Presidents and CEOs, educators and parents— in short, millions of people of all ages and occupations.
By: Donovan Livingston
An inspirational rallying call about education, race, and the true nature of equality—the Harvard Graduate School of Education convocation speech praised as “powerful” by Hillary Rodham Clinton in Teen Vogue and “inspired” by Justin Timberlake.
In emotionally charged spoken-word poetry, Livingston shares a message of hope and hard truths, declaring that education can become an equalizer only if we first acknowledge the inequality and racial divides holding back America’s future. Livingston is dedicated to helping young people reach their celestial potential, and in his galvanizing commencement address, now adapted for the first time to the page, he calls on us to raise our voices on behalf of all children, as their brighter futures can light up our own. Together, we can lift off!
By: Malcolm Gladwell
This book will help grads win at trivia nights and it will help grads learn the importance of a fresh perspective. What the Dog Saw is a collection of the essays from The New Yorker that range in topics from ketchup to plagiarism to failure. They're each about 15-25 pages long, are self-contained, and can be read in any order.
Here is the bittersweet tale of the inventor of the birth control pill, and the dazzling inventions of the pasta sauce pioneer Howard Moscowitz. Gladwell sits with Ron Popeil, the king of the American kitchen, as he sells rotisserie ovens, and divines the secrets of Cesar Millan, the "dog whisperer" who can calm savage animals with the touch of his hand. He explores intelligence tests and ethnic profiling and "hindsight bias" and why it was that everyone in Silicon Valley once tripped over themselves to hire the same college graduate.
By: Steven Levitt & Stephen Dubner
Freakonomics will inspire graduates to apply their knowledge in practical ways and think outside the box. It is also a very entertaining read.
Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool?
What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common?
How much do parents really matter?
These may not sound like typical questions for an economist to ask. But Steven D. Levitt is not a typical economist. He studies the riddles of everyday life—from cheating and crime to parenting and sports—and reaches conclusions that turn conventional wisdom on its head.
Freakonomics is a groundbreaking collaboration between Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, an award-winning author and journalist. They set out to explore the inner workings of a crack gang, the truth about real estate agents, the secrets of the Ku Klux Klan, and much more.
Through forceful storytelling and wry insight, they show that economics is, at root, the study of incentives—how people get what they want or need, especially when other people want or need the same thing.
By: James Loewen
Americans have lost touch with their history, and in Lies My Teacher Told Me Professor James Loewen shows why. After surveying eighteen leading high school American history texts, he has concluded that not one does a decent job of making history interesting or memorable. Marred by an embarrassing combination of blind patriotism, mindless optimism, sheer misinformation, and outright lies, these books omit almost all the ambiguity, passion, conflict, and drama from our past.
In this revised edition, packed with updated material, Loewen explores how historical myths continue to be perpetuated in today's climate and adds an eye-opening chapter on the lies surrounding 9/11 and the Iraq War. From the truth about Columbus's historic voyages to an honest evaluation of our national leaders, Loewen revives our history, restoring the vitality and relevance it truly possesses.
Thought provoking, nonpartisan, and often shocking, Loewen unveils the real America in this iconoclastic classic beloved by high school teachers, history buffs, and enlightened citizens across the country.
By: Marina Keegan
Marina Keegan was a star writer on the rise when she graduated magna cum laude from Yale in 2012. Tragically, she died in a car crash five days after graduation, but her voice lives on thanks to this inspiring collection of essays that capture many of the universal struggles facing her generation.
Marina left behind a rich, deeply expansive trove of writing that, like her title essay, captures the hope, uncertainty, and possibility of her generation. Her short story “Cold Pastoral” was published on newyorker.com. Her essay “Even Artichokes Have Doubts” was excerpted in the Financial Times, and her book was the focus of a Nicholas Kristof column in The New York Times. Millions of her contemporaries have responded to her work on social media.
By: David Pogue
Help grads get ahead of the game with this timeless reference book will shed light on priceless bits of advice and life hacks that already exist in the world around you―you just never knew!
In David Pogue's New York Times bestselling book Pogue's Basics: Tech, the author shared his essential tips and tricks for making all your gadgets seem easier, faster, and less of a hassle to use. In this new book, he widens his focus―to life itself. In these pages, you'll find more than 150 tricks, shortcuts, and cheats for everyday life: house and home, cars, clothing, travel, food, health, and more.
Tips include: Insider cheats for cheap air fare, how to read signs in other languages, the three-cent trick for staying awake behind the wheel, how to know which side of the highway your exit will be on, how to quench a spicy mouth on fire, and much much more!
By: Jen Sincero
In this refreshingly entertaining how-to guide, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author and world-traveling success coach, Jen Sincero, serves up 27 bite-sized chapters full of hilariously inspiring stories, sage advice, easy exercises, and the occasional swear word. If you're ready to make some serious changes around here, You Are a Badass will help you: Identify and change the self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviors that stop you from getting what you want, blast past your fears so you can take big exciting risks, figure out how to make some damn money already, learn to love yourself and others, set big goals and reach them - it will basically show you how to create a life you totally love, and how to create it NOW.
By the end of You Are a Badass, grads will understand why they are how they are, how to love what they can't change, how to change what they don't love, and how to use The Force to kick some serious ass.
By: Amy Poehler
If you're looking to give your Grad some great candid advice with a side of humor, Poehler is the perfect source. Her first memoir, Yes Please, is filled with stories, lists, poems, and ideas that you'll want to revisit again and again.
Full of the comedic skill that makes us all love Amy, Yes Please is a rich and varied collection of stories, lists, poetry (Plastic Surgery Haiku, to be specific), photographs, mantras and advice. With chapters like "Treat Your Career Like a Bad Boyfriend," "Plain Girl Versus the Demon" and "The Robots Will Kill Us All" Yes Please will make you think as much as it will make you laugh. Honest, personal, real, and righteous, Yes Please is full of words to live by.