I'll read just about anything usually, which has often led me down the path of extreme time wastage (cough, the four-book Shopaholic series, cough) and it's exceedingly rare for me to find a writer whose voice really calls out to me, in a way that will cause me to buy a book simply because this author's name is on the cover. Amy Bloom is my be-all and end-all favourite; George Saunders is another name I'll endlessly devour. And during a stint at the Newark airport, I discovered at Borders Bookstore my new literary crush: David Sedaris. That this guy is more radio comedian than pedigreed graduate of the School of New Yorker doesn't really bother me, because my test of a writer is a simple one: if I find myself reading slower and slower so that I can delay reaching the end of the book, then I know I am in love.
Naked was the book I picked up at Newark, but if you're looking for a holiday gift for a book geek, then the Christmas-themed Holidays on Ice is another of his tomes that I picked up last week. I haven't gotten through all of it yet, but the first story is about his experiences working as an elf in Macy's Santaland. Even Hemingway can't beat that.
But this blurb sells itself... "Holidays on Ice collects six of David Sedaris's most profound Christmas stories into one slender volume perfect for use as a last-minute coaster or ice scraper. This drinking man's companion can be enjoyed by the warmth of a raging fire, the glow of a brilliantly decorated tree, or even in the backseat of a van or police car. It should be read with your eyes, felt with your heart, and heard only when spoken to."