Written By: Emme Duncan | Photography By: Tim Ehrenberg

‘Tis the season… to give the gift of Nantucket! And what better way to do so than through the power of the pen? We pow wow’ed with our friends at Nantucket Book Partners to come up with a list of the best Nantucket books for everyone on your list this year.

A whale of a gift, these two books – which inspired the newly-released Ron Howard film In the Heart of the Sea – are the perfect duo for any seafaring father or lover of classic literature and adventure.

FullSizeRender-27In the Heart of the Sea
by Nathaniel Philbrick

In 1820, the whaleship Essex was rammed and sunk by an angry sperm whale, leaving the desperate crew to drift for more than ninety days in three tiny boats. Philbrick uses little known documents and vivid details about the Nantucket whaling tradition to reveal the chilling facts of this infamous maritime disaster.

Moby Dick, New Illustrated Version
by Herman Melville

The chronicle of a vengeful captain’s obsessive, self-destructive search for a white whale. This volume includes twenty-five glorious woodcut illustrations from the 1930 Albert and Charles Boni edition.


She hosts the entire family at her home. She prepares elaborate meals and is the hostess with the mostess. And that’s exhausting! So this year, give your mother the perfect light read that will allow her to escape the holiday madness.


A Very Nantucket Christmas: Two Holiday Novels
by Nancy Thayer

Featuring two heartwarming tales of family set on Nantucket Island – A Nantucket Christmas and An Island Christmas – this festive collection tells the stories of new-to-Nantucket Nicole, who grapples with a sabotaging stepdaughter, and native Felicia, who is returning to her family’s home on the island to marry her boyfriend and encounters many obstacles put up by her disapproving mother along the way.

Who knows… maybe your grandmother will bequest her family heirlooms and sentimental treasures on you for YOUR Nantucket home?!

FullSizeRender-24 copy
The Heirloom House
by Sherry Lefevre

Beginning with recollections of her childhood summers in Nantucket, author Sherry Leferve narrates the development of her personal aesthetic: wanting everything people with old inherited houses have. Filled with photos and drawings, The Heirloom House invites readers to follow Lefevre’s eBay searches and imitate her heirloom-hunting strategies.

Because what grandfather wouldn’t be interested in reading about some “old salts” right here on Nantucket?


Scallop Season
by Jim Patrick and Rob Benchley

Patrick and Benchley follow the lives of Nantucket’s scallop fisherman for one pivotal season and capture the spirit of Nantucket’s small – yet strong – scallop fleet. A classic book beautifully done.

Looking for the perfect gift to bring to your Book Club’s annual Yankee Swap? Look no further than the book club queen herself, Elin Hilderbrand, and her newest holiday themed story!

FullSizeRender-25Winter Stroll
by Elin Hilderbrand

Another Christmas on Nantucket finds Winter Street Inn owner Kelley Quinn reflecting on the past year as he writes a holiday letter to friends and family. Though the year has had its share of misfortune and worry, the Quinns have much to celebrate. And as they look forward to enjoying the cheer of Nantucket’s traditional Christmas Stroll, Kelley’s estranged second wife, Mitzi, shows up on island. With jealousy, passion, and eggnog consumption at an all-time high, it’s going to take a whole lot more than a Christmas miracle to get the Quinns – and the inn – through the holidays intact.


Here are a couple fun reads sure to make the teen in your life put down their smartphone and pick up a book!

FullSizeRender-30Nantucket Red
by Leila Howland

When Cricket Thompson is offered the chance to earn enough cash to pay the remainder of her Brown University education, she heads back to Nantucket for the summer. But the faraway island challenges Cricket in ways she hadn’t anticipated. In the end, Cricket must dig deep to fight for her future, discovering that success isn’t just about reaching goals, but also about listening to what she’s been trying to ignore – her own heart.

In the Heart of the Sea, Young Readers Edition
by Nathaniel Philbrick

Of the twenty-one castaways sent adrift in the tale of the whaleship Essex, only eight survived, including fourteen-year-old cabin boy Thomas Nickerson. Based on his New York Times best seller, Philbrick recreates the amazing events of the ill-fated Essex through the sailors own first-hand accounts, photos, maps, and artwork, and tells the tale of one of the great true-life adventure stories.

It’s never too early to start instilling a love for reading (and Nantucket)! So here’s a cute new book to share with your favorite little islanders this holiday season!


Santa Claus Moves to Nantucket
by Bobbi McPeak

Santa Claus is upset because he thinks he’s lost the true meaning of Christmas and that it’s become all about the presents. So, he asks the children of the world where he can go to find the Christmas spirit again and their answer is Nantucket! What makes Nantucket the ideal holiday location? You’ll have to read to find out.

Looking for a holiday party hostess gift that isn’t the usual pair of candlesticks or bottle of wine? We’ve got you covered.

FullSizeRender-24The Nantucket Holiday Table
by Susan Simon and Jeffrey Allen

From wreath-bedecked fishing boats to the sparkling Shoppers’ Stroll, Nantucket Island captures the magical spirit of the holidays like no place else. Elegantly adorned with 75 beautiful full-color photographs, The Nantucket Holiday Table lets everyone celebrate the charm of the Island’s traditions with 75 wonderful recipes, personal stories, historical tidbits and more.

To give the gift of Nantucket books, visit Nantucket Book Partners here.

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