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christmas present_10 Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas_Heather Rae Hutzel


6 days ’til Christmas! Yikes! If you’re like me, there are a few (or many!) people you still need gifts for. Don’t panic. I’ve got you covered.

Below are ten of my favorite books that I read in 2015 (in no particular order). For each book I’ve included a brief book description, the type of reader who would like it, and a handy, dandy link to everyone’s favorite retailer–Amazon. Couldn’t be more simple.

And if you’re already finished with your shopping, check out the books anyway. You might just find the perfect read for your Christmas break!




The Martian

  • A great read for anyone who loves sci-fi, comedy, drama, or all three combined. This book is so good, they made a movie out of it.
  • Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?


Redeeming Love

  • For that lady friend who likes a good love story.
  • In this splendid retelling of the biblical story of Hosea, bestselling author Francine Rivers pens a heartbreaking romance between a prostitute and the upright and kind farmer who marries her; the story also functions as a reminder of God’s unconditional love for his people.


The Name of the Wind

  • For that friend who loves to read epic fantasies.
  • This book is a riveting first-person narrative of a young man who grows to be the most notorious magician his world has ever seen. For a bonus, check out the second book in the trilogy, The Wise Man’s Fear.





All In: You Are One Decision Away From a Totally Different Life

  • A challenging and inspiring read for new believers and veterans alike.
  • The message of All In is simple: if Jesus is not Lord of all then Jesus is not Lord at all. The gospel doesn’t cost anything, but it demands everything. It demands that we go “all in,” a term that simply means placing all that you have into God’s hands.


Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

  • For that friend or family member who is too busy, too stressed, and stretched too thin.
  • The Way of the Essentialist isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s about getting only the right things done. Essentialism is not one more thing – it’s a whole new way of doing everything. A must-read for any leader, manager, or individual who wants to learn to do less, but better, in every area of their lives.


7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess

  • For that fun-loving friend who likes challenging, spiritual principles packaged with humor. This laugh out loud funny book will wreck their life.
  • 7 is the true story of how Jen (along with her husband and her children to varying degrees) took seven months, identified seven areas of excess, and made seven simple choices to fight back against the modern-day diseases of greed, materialism, and overindulgence to discover a call toward Christ-like simplicity and generosity that transcended social experiment to become a radically better existence.


Louder than Words: Harness the Power of Your Authentic Voice

  • For that creative, artsy-fartsy person in your life or any entrepreneurial spirit who wants to leave their mark on the world.
  • Louder Than Words offers specific strategies and tactics for uncovering, developing, and bravely using your authentic voice to create a body of work you are proud of, that resonates deeply with others, and that ultimately impacts the world.


The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears

  • An encouraging and empowering read for the “dreamers” in your life or anyone who craves power in their prayers.
  • In this book, Pastor Mark Batterson will help you uncover your heart’s deepest desires and God-given dreams, and unleash them through the kind of audacious prayer that God delights to answer.


Interrupted: When Jesus Wrecks Your Comfortable Christianity

  • Another great read for for that fun-loving friend who likes challenging, spiritual principles packaged with humor.
  • Interrupted follows author Jen Hatmaker’s messy journey through life and church and into living on mission.



  • For your aspiring minimalist friends.
  • This quick read is a celebration of living more by owning less. Written by Joshua Becker, this is a book that calls for the end of living lives seeking and accumulating more and more possessions by highlighting the enjoyment of living with less.


*Note: all book descriptions taken from