Our staff shares their stories...

Books From Mom That Changed Our Lives

Mother’s Day may be a Hallmark Holiday, but it’s an important day. Those who raised us deserve a minimum of one day dedicated to praising them. They probably deserve all the days… but that would be difficult. Like many moms, my mom gave me some truly memorable gifts. The best gifts, however, were always books. I asked the Bookstr staff to think of which books their mom gave them that changed their lives. The answers were sweet, funny, and memorable. Here are the books:


Mom’s know the best books… 

When I was in high school, my mom read Middlesex and could not stop talking about it. She gave it to me- slightly tattered because she carried it with her everywhere, and I thank her every day because this is my absolute favorite book. It’s literally the first book that comes to mind every time someone asks me what book to read. Of course, there’s sentimental value because I bonded with my mom over our shared love of Middlesex, but what’s most important about this book to me is that it made me want to read more! Thanks forever, ma!

–Gaby, Editorial & Social Media Manager



They know how to teach you valuable lessons…  

My mom gave me Pig Pig Grows Up, about a little pig who has his mom do everything for him and refuses to grow up. It’s also about him not wanting to grow up. Eventually, Pig Pig is too big to carry and his mom accidentally loses control of his carriage on a hill. He ends up saving himself and dodging a carriage with a real baby in it. In the last scene, he is carrying his tired mom home. I think it strikes a chord on the circle of life, and really discovering what you’re capable of even if you don’t think you’re ready. 

–Sarah, CEO



Can moms read your mind? Probably.

When I was 12, I desperately wanted any new Darren Shan book, especially from his Demonata series. I was obsessed, to say the least, but I stayed quiet. On my 13th birthday I opened so many presents but the one that had me screaming was a copy of Bec the third book of the Demonata series. What started the screaming was that it also glowed in the dark! A book that glowed in the dark was magic to me. To this day, Bec is my favorite out of the series. I even brought it when I met Darren Shan for him to sign it. It’s my favorite not because I love the Irish history aspect, not that I love Darren Shan, but because my mother knew to get it for me even though I never said a word about it. P.S. That’s a signed copy of the book… to ME!

–Megan, Video Production Intern



They just know how to teach you a good lesson…

When I was 5 or 6 my mom gave me the Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. It was a sad book, but I loved it. It was melancholy kind of like Kol Nidre but in book form. It taught me about compassion and about love. Somehow I didn’t see that it was also about the selfishness of the man, instead, I just saw the love of the tree. How it influenced my life is that I have always cared much more about doing what I can, than worrying about the other’s motives. Just do it because it’s the right thing to do. 

– Scott, Director of Content 



Sometimes you just admire the same characters…

Ok, I’ll be honest: I am not from a family of readers. Phew, now that that’s out of the way, I did grow up idolizing Anne of Green Gables because my mom and I would watch the mini-series almost on rotation. Starting when I was about seven until I was driving age, hanging out in empty McDonald parking lots thinking it was more entertaining (or less embarrassing) than spending time on the couch with my mom, Anne was my hero. 

My mom always encouraged me to look up to Anne for her intelligence, but really, I admired her fiery temper most — which actually worked against my mom during those brutal teenage years. Decades later, the memories of being on that couch with my mom and Anne are some of the most comforting from my childhood and now that I’m no longer 16, it’s Anne smarts I finally admire more than her temper.

–Kate, Business Development & External Affairs Director



They’re often sentimental and super smart…

Every year I would ask for books on my birthday and my mother would usually sprinkle in a book that she wanted me to read. One book she bought me and we bonded over was A Tree Grows in Brooklyn; she wanted me to read about her mother’s childhood growing up Irish-American in Brooklyn. This book brought me, my mother, and grandmother closer together comparing her life to the events in the novel. We even took a trip to my grandmother’s old neighborhood where she walked us through a day in her life back in the 1930s. I learned a lot about my family and New York history through my mother’s birthday gift. 

-Zach, Editorial Intern 



Mom really made us love books!

My mom always nurtured my intense love of books growing up. She’d take me on weekly trips to the library so I could fill my backpack alllll the way up — as the way in which I devoured novels frankly made it fiscally irresponsible to go to bookstores often. One book we shared that sticks out in my mind is definitely “Love You Forever” by Robert Munsch. We read it with my brother all the time when I was around 2-3 years old. I hold those memories near to my heart!

-Madysan, Executive Assistant


On behalf of everyone at Bookstr, thank you to all moms