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Books worth gifting

[Reedy Press]

Support local authors and knock out your Christmas shopping in one step. 

From beautiful hardcover books showcasing the state’s history through photos to children’s books with exquisite illustrations to biographies on native Missourians – people will want to display these gems in their bookcases and on their coffee tables for the holidays and beyond.

“They Will Run: The Golden Age of the Automobile in St. Louis” reveals the untold story of St. Louis’ long love affair with the automobile, complete with historical photos. Written by Molly Butterworth, former director of the Museum of Transportation in Kirkwood, and Chesterfield resident Thomas Eyssell, “They Will Run” is another richly illustrated coffee table book from Reedy Press. Check out reedypress.com for local book signings and “meet the author” events. Other titles include “St. Louis: An Illustrated Timeline” by Carol Ferring Shepley, “When The Blues Go Marching In, Championship Edition” by Dan O’Neill and so many more. 

 “Lost Restaurants of St. Louis” by Ann Lemons Pollack, showcases some of St. Louis’ favorite food haunts from years gone by and what made them famous. Ann, with her partner, Joe Pollack, covered the St. Louis food scene together for decades before Joe’s passing in 2012.

“A Colorful Balloon Ride” by author Allistar Banks takes the duo of Mary and Emily on an adventure to learn their colors. As expected, the book is richly illustrated with colorful images created by local illustrator Kaelen Felix.

Looking for a mystery to read on a dark night? Works by St. Louis novelist Laine Boyd will scratch your suspenseful itch. Meet Laine and purchase her books at the Holiday Spirit Arts & Crafts Show at Parkway South, 801 Hanna Road in Manchester, from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturday Nov. 16 and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday Nov. 17. 

For those looking for a dash of humor with their suspense, “The Dream Horse Mysteries” delivers. The four-book series by Candace Carrabus follows competitive horse rider Viola Parker in her move from Long Island to Missouri following an accident on the horse track that haunts her dreams. Each adventure blends humor and mystery as Viola battles supernatural oddities, family concerns and work-related drama. Carrabus hails from Lincoln County, Missouri, where she lives on a horse farm with her husband and daughter.

“Trusting All I Want” by Timothy Sansone tells the story of 22-year-old Lana Delacroix, a social riser who must tackle a series of painful choices as a college student venturing out into the real world.

“Dorothy and the Glass Key” by Christopher J. Finn tells the story of Ellen Steward, an employee at a rehabilitation facility trying to figure out how and why 34-year-old Dorothy Alston mysteriously lapsed into a vegetative state. One day, she stumbles across a glass key that unwinds Dorothy’s fantastical narrative, awakens a dark creature and opens a world between time and space.

There are plenty of great nonfiction reads that are as engrossing as they are touching. “The Joy of Down Syndrome” by Steve Logue is a collection of 29 short stories about childhood innocence, laughing out loud and living a life of joy with Down syndrome. Logue has three kids, the youngest of whom happens to have Down syndrome. The book is a must-have for those looking for literature that literally brings joy to any audience.

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