The Wish List: Beautiful Book Editions

November 24, 2014 Special Feature 1

The Wish List: Beautiful Book Editions

Christmas is only four weeks away now (!!!), but there are plenty of opportunities for buying people (or yourself!) presents at any time of year!

If the person you’re buying for is the type to like a solid book in their hands, then there are a wide variety of beautiful hardcover editions out there that would make perfect gifts. Here are a small selection that we’ve added to our wishlists..

sleeperandthespindle hanselandgretel

The Sleeper and the Spindle – written by Neil Gaiman, illustrated by Chris Riddell

Hansel & Gretel – written by Neil Gaiman, illustrated by Lorenzo Mattotti

These two books are twisted fairytale retellings by the brilliant Neil Gaiman. They each have very different styles of illustrations in them, the first being very light and the second dark and nightmarish.

The Sleeper and the Spindle is a dark retelling of Sleeping Beauty, and contains the most beautiful illustrations in black and white, with golden highlights. It’s not how Sleeping Beauty usually goes, but it’s a great twist on the story.

Hansel & Gretel is a more strict retelling of the Grimm Brothers’ original. It’s a dark story to start with, what with the children being abandoned by their parents and the old woman in the gingerbread house attempting to eat them, but the illustrations give it that extra creepy factor.

They’re probably not recommended for very young readers but anyone middle-grade or over should love these grown-up picture books.

My True Love Gave To Me – compiled by Stephanie Perkins

For the Young Adult fans out there, this book is a special Christmas treat just for you. Featuring authors such as Stephanie Perkins, Laini Taylor, Gayle Forman, Holly Black, David Levithan and more, this collection of twelve romantic holiday stories has suddenly jumped to the top of my wishlist. The embossed cover of the Macmillan edition is very cute, as well!



Harry Potter series – by J.K. Rowling

This entire set of Harry Potter books isn’t cheap, but it comes in an awesome Hogwarts Trunk! It’s the US editions, so the covers are a little different but still very pretty. I already have a full set of HP books but am seriously coveting this set.

This set is available at Booktopia.

The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings box set – by JRR Tolkien

Another special boxed set from Booktopia. This one features a White Tree of Gondor motif and is generally gorgeous. This would make a great gift for a young reader – The Hobbit was originally a children’s book, after all! LotR gets a lot heavier but a bit more manageable when split into three volumes. Fantasy fans should definitely own a copy.

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Penguin Classics Special Editions

Penguin have an amazing variety of classical literature in various different special bindings. They are all found on the Special Editions page of their website, but here are a few examples that we love.

prideandprejudicespecial wizardofoz christmascarol
Pride and Prejudice Drop Caps edition The Wizard of Oz Penguin Threads Edition A Christmas Carol Clothbound Classics

Barnes and Noble Collectible Editions

Barnes and Noble also have a wide variety of hardbound classics that have the most beautifully designed covers. Many of them appear to be out of print and are only available through their site as highly overpriced second hand copies, but you might be able to find one that fits in your budget either through B&N or elsewhere. A few that I love love love:

tokillamockingbird grimms narnia

Your Wishlist

If you have any gorgeous book editions you’d like to share, I’d love to see them! Have you got any on your wishlist this Christmas?


Anni lives in Brisbane, Australia with her young family. She loves everything fantasy and science fiction and believes sleep is really very underrated.

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