Omnivoracious loves THE WILD KINGDOM and EDEN as off-beat gifts for this holiday season

Gift Book Suggestions for the Imaginative, the Curious, the Weird

Omnivoracious -    |    Jeff VanderMeer    |    December 14, 2010

Two of these are hard to find; six of these are not...

Looking for something off-beat book-wise to give as a gift this holiday season? Looking for something that’s imaginative and different? Something that your friends, family, or office buddies might not already have? Something with nice production values?

As the co-creator of a quirky gift book this year, The Kosher Guide to Imaginary Animals, I've come up with some field-tested suggestions mostly from the last couple of years that might just do the trick. Because I am heartless I have included two titles in the photos that you’ll have to search relentlessly to acquire: Catherynne M. Valente’s Under in the Mere and Ellen Kushner’s The Man With the Knives. But because I am also not without empathy, I’ve added a couple not pictured that are more readily available…


The Wild Kingdom by Kevin Huizenga (Drawn & Quarterly) - In The Wild Kingdom,Glenn Ganges blindly interacts with the nature of his suburban neighborhood: dead houseplants, a recipe for graysquirrel brain, and pigeons eating discarded french fries in the parking lot of a fast-food joint. Starting off wordless, The Wild Kingdom grows more complex page by page, ending with encyclopedic entries, biographical excerpts, anthropologic flowcharts, and a cataclysmic encounter of nature and technology. It’s a beautifully constructed book, with marvelous endpapers and great production values.

Eden by Pablo Holmberg (Drawn & Quarterly) – Quixotic, surreal, absurd, never cute but always lively, this tiny trade paperback shows off Holmberg’s talent for episodic comics that sometimes veer off into very strange places. A perfect stocking stuffer for fans of Woodring et al.

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