When I was a kid, one of the greatest presents you could get was a book token. Okay, it might not look much, a little slip of paper (then) in a scratty envelope - not much to unwrap there, or play with straight away. But the possibilities... and the choice... and the anticipation...
And the hours I spent in the narrow (even for a kid) aisles of the sadly now-defunct Albion Bookshop, with a book token carefully folded in my pocket... golden moments, those.
I was reminded of all this when I saw an ad for National Book Tokens this morning, which centred around this:
I count around fifteen references there, how about you?
Anyway, while you're thinking about that, if you're stuck for last-minute Christmas gift ideas, especially for kids, don't just buy them chocolate or an iTunes giftcard. Buy them a book token. They might not all thank you for it - you risk your own moment of "I hate Uncle Jamie" - but you're giving the gift of possibilities, choice, anticipation... and books. What could be finer?