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Give the Gift of a Printed Book This Graduation Season

Categories: Ideas and Innovation
graduation season

Paper plays a major role in every student’s life during graduation season. It’s in the programs handed out to students and families at end-of-school award ceremonies and graduations. It’s in the greeting cards and beautifully wrapped presents that celebrate this scholarly achievement. It’s in the decorations at parties and receptions. And, of course, it’s there in the classic diploma that proves you’re ready for the next big adventure in life.

Unlike electronic files and digital photos, paper mementos are tangible reminders of the many years of school that culminate in graduation season. In fact, paper helps deliver some of the most definitive experiences of our lives. Paper certificates, childhood artwork, printed photos and special collections, such as baseball cards or comic books, are often among our most treasured possessions, and they tend to take on even greater importance as we age.

If your loved one is celebrating this graduation season, why not continue the paper theme by giving printed books as graduation gifts? Whether you choose a classic title or something more contemporary, a printed book with a meaningful handwritten message can make a great gift that your graduate will treasure for years to come.

We’ve created a list of titles that will inspire, educate and entertain students long after graduation season has ended.

Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

by Dr. Seuss

Dr. Seuss’s wonderfully wise Oh, the Places You’ll Go! is the perfect send-off for grads from nursery school, high school, college and beyond. From soaring to high heights and seeing great sights to being left in a Lurch on a prickle-ly perch, Dr. Seuss addresses life’s ups and downs with his signature humorous verse and whimsical illustrations, and he encourages readers to find the success that lies within. “Seuss’s message is simple but never sappy,” Booknotes writes in a review. “Life may be a ‘Great Balancing Act,’ but through it all ‘There’s fun to be done.’” This is a perennial favorite on any list of graduation gift ideas, and it’s the perfect book for anyone starting a new phase in his or her life.

Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Old Ones

by James Clear

Author James Clear draws on the most proven ideas from biology, psychology and neuroscience to create an easy-to-understand guide for making good habits inevitable and bad habits impossible. Along the way, readers will be inspired and entertained with true stories from Olympic gold medalists, award-winning artists, business leaders, life-saving physicians and star comedians who have used the science of small habits to master their craft and vault to the top of their field. Atomic Habits will reshape the way people think about progress and success, making it ideal for high school and college graduates who are beginning their adult lives.

Grown-Up Stuff Explained: 75 Topics 18-Year-Olds Should Know

by Witty Ryter

Written for soon-to-be or brand-new adults, this book provides a basic introduction to 75 topics adults must know and that 18-year-olds may not even realize apply to them. Since most young people find grown-up topics like credit scores, civic responsibilities, taxes and insurance extremely boring, the book is fast-paced and distills complex concepts into easy-to-follow explanations. There’s even a cartoon on every page to summarize each subject in a teen-friendly way. This book is a good first step in every young person’s journey through adulthood.

Joy of Cooking

by Irma S. Rombauer, Marion Rombauer Becker and Ethan Becker

The best-selling Joy of Cooking — the book Julia Child hailed as “a fundamental resource for any American cook” — has been revised and updated in this 75th anniversary edition, which restores the voice of the original authors and many of the most beloved recipes from prior editions. It also includes quick, healthy recipes. Joy of Cooking is a timeless kitchen essential that is as useful for new cooks learning the basics as it is for experienced cooks looking to challenge their skills in the kitchen.

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

by Angela Duckworth

What really drives success? Duckworth’s research shows that the combination of passion and long-term perseverance, rather than genius, is what leads people to the top of their fields. Among Grit’s most valuable insights: any effort you make ultimately counts twice toward your goal; grit can be learned, regardless of IQ or circumstances; how to trigger lifelong interest; the magic of the Hard Thing Rule; and so much more. Winningly personal, insightful and even life-changing, Grit is a book about what goes through your head when you fall down, and how that — not talent or luck — makes all the difference.


by Kobi Yamada

Written by New York Times best-selling author Kobi Yamada, Maybe is a story for everything you will do and everything you can be. It’s a story about all the possibilities ahead of you. It’s for who you are right now and it’s for all the magical, unbounded potential you hold inside. With its beautiful visual storytelling and timeless message, Maybe is an inspiring story for kids and grads of all ages.

All book descriptions adapted from