Very Good Lives

Graduation Gifts

Do you remember graduating from high school or college?  I vaguely remember that far back, the details are sketchy, but I remember being nervous and afraid of the great unknown, although I wasn’t facing anything remotely dangerous or distant.  I do know that all forms of encouragement were welcome and I imagine that it’s no different today.

So, with that in mind, I thought I’d tell you about some of the books on our graduation display in case one is the perfect thing for you to get for the graduate in your life.

First, yes, of course, I have copies of Dr. Seuss’ Oh, the Place You’ll Go!  I have the regular version, the deluxe version that come with a case and the journal entitled Oh, the Places I’ve Been! so the graduate can write about their travels.  My favorite idea came from the mom of a child in kindergarten.  She bought the deluxe version and planned to have every one of her child’s teachers from kindergarten to 12th grade sign the book and give it as a graduation gift.  I wish I had thought to start that 12 years ago!

We also stock other popular choices for graduation gifts, including: The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, a basic college cookbook, an attractive but affordable gift edition of The Art of War by Sun Tzu and the ever popular Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary.  Do keep in mind that even though the dictionary was essential when you and I went away to school, today’s student might be more likely to look up a definition on their phone.  Times change.

But the classics are always good. You might consider planning a few days ahead and come in and let us locate a beautiful edition of your favorite classic to give a special graduate.  For a few dollars extra, we can have their name engraved on the front cover.  I’m looking at a beautiful edition of Walden that we got in today.  Today we also unpacked Henry Hikes to Fitchburg.  It’s a paperback picture book that retells a short passage from Walden.  It’s a great way to encourage a graduate to enjoy the journey as they find their own way.

Bibles are also popular gifts and we do carry a small selection.  With a few days notice we order which ever Bible you like and have the recipient’s name engraved on the cover.  

There are some brand new books that are perfect for graduates.  The World is Waiting for You is a collection of graduation speeches.  The Wisdom of Merlin by T.A. Barron explores the importance of 7 concepts—gratitude, courage, knowledge, belief, wonder, generosity, and hope—from the perspective of Merlin.  My favorite is by J. K. Rowling (and yes, I loved Harry Potter).  It’s entitled Very Good Lives: The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination.  The little book of only 70 pages is nicely illustrated with modern graphics and contains the graduation address that Rowling delivered to the graduates of Harvard University a few years ago.   I read it cover-to-cover and I think you’d probably enjoy reading it before you wrap it up.

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