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The Graduation Book Gift Guide

Lyena Chavez

Head of Instruction & Outreach


Graduation season is here!  Want to pass along a little post-graduation wisdom or simply give that dear Merrimack College friend a book that is not assigned reading? I’m going to go out on a limb and say that your graduating friend is going to get a copy of Oh, The Places You’ll Go!  from that well-intentioned, sweet aunt or cousin. Here are a few fun gift book choices for Merrimack College graduates:


Wait, What?: and Life’s Other Essential Questions

By James E. Ryan

This recently published book is based on a graduation speech that James E. Ryan, Dean of Harvard’s Graduate School of Education, gave that went viral.  Ryan encourages us to ask these five good questions: Wait, what?; I wonder…?; Couldn’t we at least…?; How can I help?; and What truly matters?  I’m going to bet your recent grad will ask, Wait, what? a few times as they move to their next phase in life.


Adulthood is a Myth: A Sarah’s Scribbles Collection

by Sarah Andersen

Brooklyn-based artist Sarah Anderson has created these brilliant cartoons that illustrate the blood, sweat, and tears of adulting. This graphic novel (yes, that means 100% comic strips) is laugh-out-loud funny so purchase it for that friend who needs to giggle at adulthood and maybe realize that they are not alone in this big scary, post-Merrimack world.


Very Good Lives: The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination

by J.K. Rowling

Is your friend a Harry Potter fan who would enjoy some encouraging words from rags- to-riches author J.K. Rowling?  This beautifully illustrated gem transcribes Rowling’s magical 2008 commencement address at Harvard University. Rowling believes that by embracing failure and harnessing the power of imagination, we can all lead enriching lives.


Remember that McQuade Librarians can help you find the perfect book for you and/or that special graduate in your life.  Wishing you happy reading even long after the pomp and circumstance ends.