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Holiday Gift Guide: Local Interest and Holiday Books

Posted November 8, 2021 4:03 p.m. EST
Updated November 8, 2021 4:15 p.m. EST

Local Interest

When Ghosts Come Home

When Ghosts Come Home by Wiley Cash
Belinda says, “Set in a North Carolina coastal town in the 1980s, I was instantly caught up in a murder investigation with Sheriff Winston Barnes as he worked to piece together the puzzling crime scene and get to the truth. Through his skilled use of spare dialogue and sparse clues, the author deftly guides Sheriff Barnes in his reluctant quest to reveal the rot of racism in his community, spread by those who embrace its hate and destruction, and to acknowledge the despair and fury of those who are targets of that hate.”

A Carnival of Snackery: Diaries (2003-2020) by David Sedaris
There’s no right way to keep a diary, but if there’s an entertaining way, David Sedaris seems to have mas­tered it. The entries here reflect an ever-changing background—new administrations, new restrictions on speech and conduct. What you can say at the start of the book, you can’t by the end. At its best, A Carnival of Snackery is a sort of sampler: the bitter and the sweet. Some entries are just what you wanted. Others you might want to spit discreetly into a napkin.

NC Land of Water Land of Sky

North Carolina: Land of Water, Land of Sky by Bland Simpson
Bland Simpson, the celebrated bard of North Carolina's sound country, has blended history, observation of nature, and personal narrative in many books to chronicle the people and places of eastern Carolina. Yet he has spent much of his life in the state's Piedmont, with regular travels into its western mountains. Here, for the first time, Simpson brings his distinctive voice and way of seeing to bear on the entirety of his home state, combining storytelling and travelogue to create a portrait of the Old North State with care and humor.

Fight Songs : A Story of Love and Sports in a Complicated South by Ed Southern
Fight Songs explores the connections and contradictions between the teams we root for and the places we plant our roots; between the virtues that sports are supposed to teach and the cutthroat business they've become; between the hopes of fans and the demands of the past, present, and future.

Dark Harvest

Dark Harvest: New and Selected Poems by Joseph Millar
Dark Harvest showcases two decades of Joseph Millar’s finest poetic work, including his beloved and award-winning poems centered on the unseen men and women at the margins of American life. Millar's poems don’t favor beauty over suffering, nor do they reach for knowledge over mystery—instead, his words carry forward their Whitmanic imperatives: to turn away from nothing, to be awash in contradictions.

No Cure for Being Human: (And Other Truths I Need to Hear) by Kate Bowler
With dry wit and unflinching honesty, Kate Bowler grapples with her cancer diagnosis, her ambition, and her faith as she tries to come to terms with her limitations in a culture that says anything is possible. She finds that we need one another if we’re going to tell the truth: Life is beautiful and terrible, full of hope and despair and everything in between—and there’s no cure for being human.

Holiday Picks

Christmas in Peachtree Bluff

Christmas in Peachtree Bluff by Kristy Woodson Harvey
In the newest installment of Kristy Woodson Harvey’​s Peachtree Bluff series, three generations of the Murphy women must come together when a hurricane threatens to destroy their hometown—and the holiday season in the process. Written with her signature Southern charm, Harvey explores the magic of Christmas, the power of forgiveness, and the importance of family in a tale that reminds us that, no matter the circumstances, home is always where we belong—especially during the holidays.

Advent: Festive German Bakes to Celebrate the Coming of Christmas by Anja Dunk
The Advent season is one of the most special times of the year, when candles twinkle, the Christmas tree is decorated, and the smells of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove fill the kitchen. In her new cookbook Advent, Anja Dunk shares her recipes for the very best of traditional German festive bakes. Featuring Anja's own linocut illustrations and evocative photography, this is a stunning, comforting clothbound volume that will be a family favorite for many years to come.

The Matzah Ball

The Matzah Ball by Jean Meltzer
Rachel Rubenstein-Goldblatt is a nice Jewish girl with a shameful secret: she loves Christmas. For a decade she's hidden her career as a Christmas romance novelist from her family. Rachel is determined to find her muse at the Matzah Ball, a Jewish music celebration on the last night of Hanukkah, even if it means working with her summer camp archenemy—Jacob Greenberg. Maybe this holiday of lights will be the spark she needed to set her heart ablaze.

The Christmas Village by Annie Rains
USA Today bestselling author Annie Rains returns to Somerset Lake, North Carolina, with a heartwarming Christmas story about a midwife and her ex-fiance who face high stakes when they must team up to compete in the neighborhood house decorating contest, in this trade paperback that will help get readers in the holiday spirit.

Baking for the Holidays

Baking for the Holidays by Sarah Kieffer
Here's a festive holiday baking book to celebrate this very special time of year. Sarah Kieffer, author of 100 Cookies, beloved baker behind The Vanilla Bean Blog, and creator of the "bang-the-pan" method offers more than 50 delicious recipes for seasonal brunches, cookie swaps, and all those Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year's Eve parties. Delight family and friends with edible gifts and whip up some delicious baked goods to treat yourself through the long winter months after the holidays have ended.

Yuletide Village 500 Piece Puzzle
Award-winning designer, illustrator, and creative director Michael Storrings captures the spirit of a winter wonderland holiday season in a yuletide village. Galison puzzles are packaged in matte-finish sturdy boxes, perfect for gifting, reuse, and storage.

See the rest of our holiday catalog here!

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Quail Ridge Books and WRAL.com present "Bookin' with Quail Ridge Books", featuring all of the best book news, reviews, author interviews, reading lists and literary event coverage from the Triangle and beyond. A new episode of the Bookin' podcast, featuring interviews with local, national and international bestselling and prize-winning authors, is released every Monday morning.