7 Reasons to Give Books This Holiday Season

Books are the best. They take you to faraway places, and make you feel more at home in the world. They introduce you to new things, and deepen connections with the things you love.

Give Books

But not everyone has the opportunity to own new books. Over 44 percent of the nation’s children—more than 32 million kids—live in low-income households without access to age-appropriate reading material and educational resources.

This year marks our 5th annual Give Books campaign, that special time of year when we encourage everyone to give books during the holidays. For each pledge, we’ll donate a book through First Book, a nonprofit that sends new books to the schools and neighborhoods where they are needed most. Our goal is to donate 30,000 books, and we need your help to get there.

So how do you pledge? Head over to or use the hashtag #GiveBooks on your favorite social network. We’ll be keeping track throughout the coming months, so please use the hashtag as many times as you want—each use counts as a new book in the hands of a child, and a testimonial to the magic of reading.

To kick off the campaign, we’d thought we’d list out exactly why you should give books. 


1. Because it’s the quickest path from the head to the heart.


2. Because you should only give gifts you’d like to receive yourself.


3. Because reading from a beautiful, well-crafted object is a magical and irreplaceable joy.


4. Because books say “this is who I am” and “this is what I know and love about you.”


5. Because introducing someone to a book that they have never read is exhilarating.

"I #givebooks because I get such a kick out of introducing someone to a book they've never read, and one that I know will change their life for the better. I always give the Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books to parents of young children because I adored them as a child and had such fun reading them to my kids, who loved them just as much as I did. They were written by Betty MacDonald in the 1950s and illustrated by Hilary Knight (of Eloise fame), about a magical little woman who cures children of their bad habits. Each chapter is named for the cure: "The Won't-Pick-Up-Toys Cure", "The Interrupter's Cure", "The Never-Want-to-Go-to-Schooler's Cure". The stories are full of magic, wit, and wisdom, and are delightful to read out loud (which is a good thing because kids want to read these books over and over again) and they really do help parents "cure" their kids of bad habits!"

A photo posted by @givebooks on


6. Because special moments in our lives deserve to be celebrated and remembered.


7. Because you’re giving someone a bit of what it means to be human.


So let’s give books this holiday—to our family, our friends, and the children that need them most.

Why do you give books? Share your response in the comments or take it to social media. Check out for more details.

Jenna Homen

Community Manager at Chronicle Books. When she's logged off, she can be found cooking, camping, or in a museum. You can follow her on Twitter at @jn_na.
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  • Gabe November 6, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    I would love to be a part of your holiday book campaign! I have a literacy charity that I started when I was 7, and enjoy collaborating with people who share the passion of books.



  • Liz November 16, 2016 at 8:29 am

    My daughter (age 6) and I have been giving books for birthdays as well as the holidays for quite some time now. Children in our family have so much “stuff” these days – toys, craft supplies, you name it – that we find sharing my daughter’s favorite or recommended stories with her cousins is a great way to keep them connected during the rest of the year.

    And, well, I have an easier time finding a place in my home for a great or much-loved book than I do for yet another toy or random assortment of plastic crap (thanks stepmom!)


  • Henosis Brands December 25, 2017 at 12:53 am

    “Books are the best. … But not everyone has the opportunity to own new books.” There are still unfortunate children/people who have no access to books. Donating our old books can make a big difference in their lives.


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