Friday, December 21, 2012

Super Duper Last Minute Holiday Gift Guide! Books For Alls The Geeks.

We here at All Things Fangirl always try to have some kind of Holiday Gift Guide every year, so this time around, we're suggesting a slew of fun books for all of the geeks in your life. Barnes and Noble sent me an email saying they are staying open super late, so if one of these strikes your fancy, just give em a call and see if they carry it!

For the Steampunk Geek

Steampunk: An Illustrated History of Fantastical Fiction, Fanciful Film and other Victorian Visions

This gorgeous hardcover encyclopedia of all things Steampunk is a fantastic buy not only for folks with a pre-existing love of Steampunk, but for any good geek. Though I have never cosplayed or own anything steampunk, I dig the aesthetic whenever it shows itself in pop culture, and thanks to this book, I now have an understanding of why it exists, where it came from, and how I can further get my fix. It even points out certain properties that were Steampunk before Steampunk was a thing (like Myst?!) The book is 192 pages filled with beautiful illustrations and detailed history - there's even a complete primer in Victorian Science Fiction like HG Wells, Jules Verne and Poe, and sections on Steampunk influences like Philip K Dick, Miyazaki, Alan Moore and Alexander McQueen.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the Comedy Geek

The Douche Journals: Volume One
This novelty book based on the world of New Girl is an account of all of the douchey things Schmidt did from 2005 to 2010 that required him to put money in the douche jar. The book is more or less a series of ridiculous quotes, when and why Schmidt said it, and how much money he had to put in the jar as a result. The book is actually pretty hilarious and can be appreciated from whatever page you randomly turn to, making it the perfect coffee table book for a self professed New Girl fan. Some examples - "God, I wish I had the wrists for a Livestrong bracelet"/The Mall/$20 "If a pony only doing one trick has become synonymous with failure, perhaps we as a society have become too demanding of our ponies."/Strip Club/unfair criticism of Kandy/$18 "I mean, come on, I shouldn't have to drive to Alhambra to find artisanal gherkins"/dinner table/gherkinless meal/$11 and the list goes on and on and on, 230 pages worth.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

WAY more after the jump!

For The History Geek

The Onion Book of Known Knowledge
This year, The Onion released their own version of an encyclopedia and it's every bit as strange and wonderful as you'd expect. For the most part, the information is accurate, just jazzed up a bit. The section on Mark Twain is a pretty good bio that happens to also be written IN the style of Twain himself. Most of the time, the embellishments are obvious, so as not to confuse, but still give a good chuckle. Obviously Jesse James didn't create a successful bandit consulting firm after retiring from banditry, but reading about how he did sure is fun. Favorite entries include ones like "Jennifer: perfectly nice girl with a lot going for her, but at the end of the day she's just no Caroline, is she?" or "Rooibos: South African red tea, but you already knew that," but perhaps the best one is for the Republican Party. Which I'll leave to you to read on your own :). A must for any intellectual looking for something useful *and* hilarious.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the Culinary Geek

Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
Simply put, if you know someone who likes to cook, buy them this cookbook. Unless this person already has it. Which is very possible. It may have only just been released but it's the SMITTEN FREAKING KITCHEN COOKBOOK. Most young, aspiring foodies nowadays who know their way around a kitchen have cooked at least one of Smitten Kitchen's fantastic recipes and this book compiles the best of them, divided into any and all courses and occasions. (Personally, I highly recommend the apple cake. Turned out exceptionally and is insanely easy.)

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the TV Geek

Inside HBO's Game of Thrones
Ever get a little confused while watching Game of Thrones? Well fret no further!! This beautiful companion book to the first two seasons is filled with photos, concept art, history, interviews, an extensive foreward by George R.R. Martin, family trees, detailed explanations of the production design and much much more. Perfect for anyone determined to know more about Game of Thrones than anyone ever.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

Buffy: The Making of a Slayer
A full retrospective on the show that comes with both a 176 page book covering all seven seasons, featuring behind the scenes photos never seen and tidbits never heard, *and* 13 replicas of spells and propecies used in the series. The perfect gift for that best friend that watched Buffy with you every week in middle/high school. It may be expensive, but it's also THE BEST, and frankly, we all need to be reminded from time to time how amazing Buffy is, cause, come on.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

Firefly: A Celebration
Like the Buffy book, but for the Browncoats in your life! This book actually combines Titan's three previous massive Firefly guides into one glorious hardcover nomnom, and also includes 9 frameable cast photos and a prop banknote! 550 pages of pure awesome.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the Comic Geek

Chicks Dig Comics: A Celebration of Comic Books by the Women who Love Them

Remember my review of Whedonistas: A Celebration of the Worlds of Joss Whedon by the Women who Love Them? This is like that, but for comic books, and it is fantastic. Many of the writers are actually members of ATFG's very own Fangirl Academy! A great gift for any Fangirl (as is Geek Girls Unite, btw), to turn them on to new projects, remind them why they fell in love with comics in the first place, and bring them closer to the Fangirl community.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the Tolkein Geek

The Unofficial Hobbit Handbook

Unofficial maybe but DAMN is this thorough. And pretty funny. I have no idea if the list of what a Hobbit would most likely keep in his pantry is accurate or not, but it doesn't much matter. If you ever wanted to be a Hobbit, or just really like The Hobbit, you'll get a huge kick out of this book.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the Aspiring Geek

The Geek Handbook

A super fan book that actually may make you feel like a better, more well rounded geek. It opens with our history as a people, then goes into a section after my own heart: know your geek! This book divides us into tabletop, history, sci-fi, sports, music, comic book, gamer, automotive, anime, food and tech, as a base with which to grow from. I would argue that film, television and cosplay should all be entries as well, but hey, can't win em all. There are plenty of cheeky sections like hairstyling tips (i.e. the Tony Stark and the Rogue), and a list of the 12 types of people you'll find at a Dungeons and Dragons game, but there's also incredibly helpful information, like fairly helpful social tips if that's something you struggle with, suggestions for geek-related activities, a list of properties that changed the landscape of geekdom forever, web comic recommendations, the worst moments in comic history, and even a guide to help you sort through your swag. There's even a section on geek to geek etiquette that proposes we don't question each other's credentials or judge each other, both very hot button issues, and a section on geek dating, fetishes and weddings . Overall, the book is great fun, an easy read, and oddly helpful.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

For the Film Geek

If You Like...Quentin Tarantino
Last year, we reviewed the first in the If You Like...series, If You Like The Sopranos, and recommended it over on Since then, they've published a slew of other options, including our recommendation this year, If You Like Quentin Tarantino, perfect timing what with Django Unchained hitting theaters and all! Tarantino is a master of film. Not only in making them, but watching them, dissecting them and homaging them. This book goes film by film and details the inspiration for each, providing numerous fantastic suggestions. He even appropriately divides Kill Bill 1 & 2, giving each its own section, one focused on Japanese action cinema/exploitation, the other on kung fu & italian horror. While any film fan as hardcore as Tarantino himself may very well have already seen every movie in this book, it never hurts to have a reference guide around the house.

Buy Belated on Amazon!

The Great Showdowns
Just do it!

Buy Belated on Amazon!

Silhouettes from Popular Culture
Similar to Scott C's The Great Showdowns, Silhouettes from Popular Culture emerged from Gallery 1988 in Los Angeles. Another popular artist, Olly Moss, has been adored on this circuit for years, and then in 2011 he was given his own solo show, called Paper Cuts. The entire show was laser cut silhouettes of Moss' drawings of pop culture icons, and all of the originals got snatched up within a couple hours. This is partly why this mini coffee table book is so coveted - Moss' favorites of the 300 he has created all compiled for you viewing pleasure. In the same way that The Great Showdowns encouraged trying to guess which Showdown was from what movie, so too does Silhouettes from Popular Culture, no index to be found. An awesome gift for any film fanatic. Added bonus: a forward by director Duncan Jones!

Buy Belated on Amazon!


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