If you can read this, thank a teacher!

May 7 – 11 is Teacher Appreciation Week, and what better time to reflect on all that teachers mean to us than right before school lets out for the summer?

Beyond teaching the ABCs and 123s, educators inspire us to think creatively, solve problems, and ask questions about our surroundings so we can learn how to improve our lives.

Need a way to show your favorite teachers how much you appreciate them? Why not find them a novel from their favorite fiction genre, or how about a new blank journal to record their thoughts? Tip: You can inscribe the cover page with a short note, inspirational quote or poem thanking your teachers for all that they taught you and let them know how they’ve made a difference in your life.

Or, if you’re not quite sure what your teacher would enjoy, gift cards are always appreciated. Now through Sunday, May 13, when you purchase a $25 HPB Gift Card, you’ll receive a $5 HPB Card for yourself to use in-store during the month of June!

As our own special “thank you” to educators, teachers and librarians can save 10% year-round on all their purchases at HPB when they sign up for the HPB Educator Discount Program.

Did you have a particularly exceptional teacher that inspired you? Tell us about it in the comments!

— Kate & BW

Win a $25 HPB gift card for Mother’s Day

We recently posted some great suggestions for Mom’s Day, but if you are like me, you haven’t had time yet to order, shop or browse — and Sunday is fast approaching. Don’t panic; you still have time to get the perfect gift! It’s a gift filled with imagination, possibility and nearly unlimited choices–it’s a Half Price Books gift card, of course! And now through May 13, when you buy a $25 card for her (or anyone else you love…even if it’s yourself!) you can get a $5 HPB card to use in the future!

But you aren’t here for small talk, are you? I bet you’d love to win a $25 HPB gift card? It’s simple; in the comments section below, let us know the best suggestion for what Mom should buy with her HPB gift card.  We’ll draw a winner on Friday, May 11 at Noon CST.

I can’t wait to see what you suggest!

— Becky

29 Thought-full Gifts Your Mom Will Love

Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 13. And to help you find the perfect gift for your mom, our experts have rounded up some “thought-full” books. Year after year, a mother’s role changes. So you should choose the right gift that suits your mom and her interests.

There are titles below hand-picked for expecting mothers, newbie moms, working moms, sentimental mothers, moms who need a break, and let’s not forget… grandmothers, too.

Stop in to your local HPB and ask one of our Bibliomaniacs to help you find these books and more! Do you know what you’re getting for your mom yet? If you’re stumped – remember, you can always grab an HPB Gift Card. And right now, for each $25 you spend in gift cards, you’ll get a $5 HPB Card!*

A special shout out to my amazing mother for the wonderful woman that she is. And hats off to moms everywhere! — Meredith

UPDATE: Still in search of gift ideas for mom? Hop on over to the HPB YouTube channel and hear what some of our store managers suggest.

*Offer valid in-stores and online at hpb.com through Sunday, May 13, 2012.

Welcome to the World: 21 Books to Start Baby’s Library

Earlier this year, people on the Inter-webs were yammering about Oprah giving a trunk stuffed with books as a baby gift to Beyonce and Jay-Z. Many of our Facebook fans chimed in on the topic. And we were struck by the fabulous and thoughtful book suggestions made by HPB fans. It left us feeling all chock-full of warm fuzzies. Fellow booklovers seem to agree: A library of books is a lovely gift for a little one.

So, in celebration of this First Day of Spring, when new life is blooming all around us, here’s a list of “Welcome to the World” gift ideas –– 21 books to give new parents to jumpstart their baby’s library.

                

If you were to give the gift of a library to a baby, what books would you include?

Happy Spring, everyone! – Meredith

Meredith is Associate Creative Director at Half Price Books Corporate.
You can follow her on Twitter at @msquare21.

Top Five HPB Gag Gifts

Holiday office parties! Even the Half Price Books headquarters are not immune to them. The tradition is simple–prizes are awarded. Competition is fierce. It is even rumored that some people stay up all night crafting the “perfect” tacky gift.

So what do you do when you are in a bind, searching for the perfect secret “holiday festive being” present? (Is it ok to say the S word?…ok Secret Santa present)

Suggestions:

1. Have you thought about making up a funny song or poem or letter and sharing it with your giftee? Free plug for Blank Your Holiday!

2. What about a gift card? Admittedly I have bought gift cards for coworkers and friends just to reap the benefits. Free $5 for every $25? Gimme $100! Shopping done.

3. What about a cool calendar from their favorite bookstore? Just an idea I thought up!

4. Perhaps you are a novice loom-knitter and have crafted some endearing socks showcasing your company’s beloved mascot? Or maybe that was just me. Sigh.

5. Call in sick?

There are a million directions you can go, but here are the Top 5 office gifts we’ve seen at the HPB corporate gag gift exchange:

5. Diagnostic Toilet Seat– A sentimental favorite, this one’s been passed on to the newest employee each year for close to a decade. It comes with a handy color-guide to let you know what your problem is, based on the color of your “evacuation” — it’s never been used and in the original packaging, thankfully!

4. Family Heirloom Fruitcake– HPB stores have stocked these for the 2011 holiday gag-gift season. You are never required to actually eat it– and as a matter of fact you shouldn’t, since it’s a plastic fruitcake model.

3. Mug yourself…make a mug (or tshirt, or tote) with a goofy picture of yourself. Your Secret Santa will always remember you in conjunction with the 2011 holidays!

2. A funny book! What about The History of Farting, paperback edition- this small treasure of a book has been a top-seller at HPB for several years. We have added to the mix the equally hilarious Nose Picking for Pleasure. Just run into any HPB and ask your nearest Bibliomaniac to grab one of these for you. You will not be sorry! Your friends might be, but you will not.

1. Company logo snuggy! It’s as easy at 1-2-3:

            1- Buy 6 yards of fleece in the color of your company’s logo OR mascot character

            2- Stay up all night, not using a pattern and mess up three times. My personal suggestion is a six pack of beer and/or a pot of coffee. This is also an appropriate time to catch up on your DVR.

            3- Glue on hundreds of pom-pom balls to form your company’s logo.

So what’d you give for your gag-gift/white-elephant/Secret Santa gift this year?

 — Becky

HPB Gift Guide for Booklovers, Movie Collectors, Music Buffs & Comic Enthusiasts

Happy holidays, booklovers! Have you finished shopping for gifts for your loved ones yet? If you’re anything like me, you’ve just started. Some call it procrastination, others say they work best under pressure — personally, I have to marinate in pine-scented, jingle-bell-rocked, gingerbread-and-candy-caned, just-watched-Love-Actually goodness for a few weeks before my Christmas spirit really kicks in.

So for those of you who will be spending the 12 days before Christmas shopping furiously, here are a few ways we at HPB can help out: 1) Shop for presents of mind at any of our 114 stores (in doing so, you’ll contribute to our Million Book Project, wherein we’ll donate more than a million books in 2012) 2) Visit hpbmarketplace.com and search for books, movies, music & more from 20,000 independent sellers 3) Buy a gift card and receive a bonus $5 HPB gift card for yourself, good in January or 4) Check out the gift guide below, including 3 bonus videos highlighting some HPB merchandise in an — ahh– entertaining and unusual fashion 🙂

Gifts for Book Lovers

      

       

 

Gifts for Movie & Television Buffs

                   

 

          

        

    

Gifts for Music Heads  

      

             

 Gifts for Gamers & Comic Fanatics   

    

 
       
 
       

As promised, and against our better judgment, may we present “Karl & Kristyn Go Shopping.”

Happy Holidays!

— Kristen D.

This Holiday Season, Give Presents of Mind

Hey everyone –

Can you believe it?  Christmas is only 39 days away!  It always seems to sneak up on me, but not this year – I’ve already bought a few gifts for my family!

Of course, Half Price Books is a great place to find gifts for your loved ones.  With books, music and movies in all genres, you can’t help but find something everyone would enjoy!  This year, you’ll do some extra good when shopping at Half Price Books.  We’ve launched our Million Book Challenge – for every transaction made during the holiday season, we’ll donate a book to an organization in need in 2012.  So the presents of mind you buy your friends and family will give books to kids who may never have had a book of their own.  Keep checking our Million Book Challenge web page (hpb.com/million) to see how we’re doing and to find out how to get books for your school or organization.

In the meantime, check out some of the fun gifts you can find at our stores!

 

A copy of A Christmas Carol is a must for any home.  This lovely red embossed version with gold lettering is $4.98.

 

 

 

 

Need something for the chef in your life?  How about this book, Holiday Baking, filled with all sorts of fun recipes!  $9.98

 

 

 

 

Every famous magician had to start somewhere.  Perhaps you’ll find the next Houdini with this set of Magic Tricks from HPB!  $7.98

 

 

 

 

If your kiddo enjoys painting, get them this Rock Painting Animals book and kit.  You’ll have new art for your home in no time!  $9.98

 

 

What presents of mind will you give this holiday season?  (Or which ones do you want to receive?:))  Post in the comments section!

— Emily

Top 5 Educator “Thank You” Gifts

Hey gang! We here at HPB appreciate our teachers and librarians. I mean, where would we be without them? I wouldn’t know all of the prepositions if it wasn’t for my sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Nance. (About, above, across, after, against, along…  You get the idea.)

Anyhow, this Thursday, October 6 through Monday, October 10, we’re celebrating Educator Appreciation Weekend here at Half Price Books! Teachers and librarians get an extra 20% off and while they shop and can renew their Educator Discount Card, which saves teachers 10% year round (we’re also extending the renewal deadline for any educators who have retired or been laid off the last year, because we like to help out where we can.) Check out www.hpb.com/edu for all the details.

In the meantime, we found these fun teacher items on Etsy. Check them out!

 

  

                                                  “Classroom Rules” by Barnowlprimitives

                                              

                                                        “Teachers Rock!” by Vintagelucys 

                                               

                                                       Teacher’s Pet Apron by VintageJewels

                                               

                                                             Librarian Tote by gnorasaurus

                                               

Crayon Wreath by LolaGrayStore

Who was/is your favorite teacher, and why? If you could thank them for one thing, what would it be?

— Emily B.