Books as gifts

The Gift by Jason MChristmastime is just around the corner, and I’ve started to give a thought or two about gift-shopping. As a book-reader myself, I’ve always wanted to give books, because they can be so much more than “just books”.

However, I’ve never been able to give books as gifts. If my choice is a good one for my receiver, there’s also good chance they already have the book. If they don’t already have the book, there’s a chance they won’t like it. Gift certificates to book stores almost feel like a cop-out (although I do personally like them). Coffee-table books relating to an interest are also usually on the expensive side.

Without the luxury of wishlists, how do you go about giving books as gifts, if you ever do?