BOING BOING GIFT GUIDE •  PICKS FROM:   Everyone mark cory david xeni rob jason dean falcor

Welcome to this year's Gift Guide, a piling-high of our most loved items from 2014 and beyond. There are books, comics, games, gadgets and much else besides!

MAKIESAward-winning 3D-printed dolls that you design and create, from their faces and hair to the patterns on their clothes. A toy for young makers and the grownups who love them.

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The New Annotated H. P. Lovecraft Les Klinger's enormous volume has earned critical praise from Neil Gaiman, Gahan Wilson, Peter Straub and Harlan Ellison; the book is big enough to stun an (eldritch demon) ox, and is introduced by none other than Alan Moore.

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The Peripheral, William GibsonIn The Peripheral, William Gibson's first futuristic novel since 1999's All Tomorrow's Parties, we experience the fantastic synthesis of a 20th century writer -- the Gibson of Neuromancer, eyeball-kicks of flash and noir; and the Gibson of Pattern Recognition, arch and sly and dry and keen. (read my whole review)

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The Best American Comics 2014, Scott McCloud (editor)If there's one thing Scott McCloud is better at than making comics, it's explaining comics, which makes him the best possible editor for this year's Best American Comics. McCloud's volume is surprising, delightful, diverse, brave and endlessly wonderful. (read my whole review)

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What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions The book-length version of Randall "XKCD" Munroe's brilliant What-If? column -- which features scientifically rigorous, utterly absurd answers to ridiculous hypotheticals -- has been on the bestseller lists since it was announced in March. It. Is. A. <blink>Triumph</blink>. (read my whole review)

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Art of Asking, Amanda Palmer Amanda Palmer's new book Art of Asking is a moving and insightful memoir of her life performing music while making personal connections with her fans. (read my whole review)

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Bad for You: Exposing the War on Fun!, Kevin C Pyle and Scott Cunningham This on-fiction, book-length comic is a marvellous and infuriating history of censorship, zero-tolerance, helicopter parenting, and the war on kids (read my whole review)

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Information Doesn't Want to Be Free: Laws for the Internet Age, Cory Doctorow Kirkus and Publishers Weekly both gave starred reviews to my nonfiction book about copyright and creativity in the 21st century, which has introductions from Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer. It sold out its first print run two weeks before the official release date in November, and is back in a second pressing. It's attracted praise from the chief justice of the US Federal Ninth Circuit Court and from indie cartoonists, musicians, and authors (read Kirkus's review)

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It's ComplicatedA passionate, scholarly, and vividly described account of the reality of young peoples' use of networked technologies in America today. Painstakingly researched through interviews and close study for more than a decade, boyd's book is the most important analysis of networked culture I've yet to read.

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Gerber money clipI've used a money-clip for years as an alternative to a wallet, and the idea of having a small, sharp blade (Gerber makes great tools!) built into it is immensely appealing.

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AeropressIt's this simple: if you know someone who drinks coffee and doesn't use an Aeropress, get that person an Aeropress, and that person will be grateful to you forever, and when you visit that person, you will drink excellent coffee. I now keep one at the office, one at home, one at my parents' place and one in my suitcase.

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Hot Socks- From Frida Kahlo to Venus on the Half Shell to the Mona Lisa, socks woven with fine-art themes.

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Marty McFly costume teeEerily convincing, Walkman not included.

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Eyes on the PrizeFamed documentary series on the civil rights movement that all but disappeared because of trouble clearing the copyrights to clips of leaders like Martin Luther King for the reissue. Nearly ten years ago, a civil disobedience campaign brought attention to society's loss as a result of this series no longer being available for home and classroom use, and the resulting furore brought the intransigent rightsholders back to the bargaining table, and this indispensable video back from the dead.

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Seinfeld Complete Series33 discs for $66? Don't mind if I do.

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Capital in the 21st Century, Thomas Piketty The reason for capitalism is that it is supposed to allocate reward based on "merit" -- it is supposed to move capital into the hands of the people who can do the most with it -- and if all our policy decisions are made in service to a class of supermanagers whose wealth comes from squatting on a fortune managed by some green-eyeshade quants who grow it without its owner ever doing a notable thing apart from being born to dynasty, there is no more reason for capitalism. (read my whole review)

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No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State, Glenn Greenwald More than a summary of the Snowden leaks: it's a compelling narrative that puts the most explosive revelations about official criminality into vital context (read my whole review).

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In Real Life, Cory DoctorowJen Wang and I created this bestselling graphic novel for young readers, adapted from my short story Anda's Game, about gender, video-games, labor, and economics. It's attracted fans of all ages, and has become an especial favorite among gamers (read an excerpt

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Homeland, Cory DoctorowEdward Snowden had a copy of my novel Homeland -- the sequel to Little Brother -- with him in Hong Kong; Aaron Swartz and Jake Appelbaum both wrote stunning afterwords for it, and there's also a DRM-free audiobook read by Wil Wheaton.

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Ariol, Emmanuel Guibert and Marc Boutavant Ariol is like your kid's obnoxious friend who is so incredibly naughty that you dread his visits, and who your kid adores and wants to play with all the time (thankfully, he also lives in a comic book). (see my daughter's guest-review)

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Amulet, Kazu KibuishiThe first five volumes of Amulet are something of a marvel. They combine so many disparate elements that you'd swear it would all end up feeling like some kind of silly everything-but-the-kitchen-sink joke, but somehow, Kibuishi manages to give each element its due, so there's Star Wars-esque comedy droids; walking steampunk mecha houses, kaiju elves (who fight with walking steampunk houses!); aerial battles, anthropomorphic animals with swords; infinitely wise intelligent trees; brave zeppelin pilots; mystic secret societies; Ender's Game-style child pilots; and much more. (read my whole review)

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Glorkian Warrior, James KochalkaI have never heard my daughter laugh as loud or as long as she did when I read her James Kochalka new kids' graphic novel. My six year old literally howled with laughter as I read this to her at bedtime, and kicked her legs in the air, and thumped the pillow -- tears of laughter rolled down her cheeks. After reading this to her twice at bedtime, I had to declare a moratorium on further bedtime reads because it wound her up too much to sleep.

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Bialetti Moka Express Stovetop PercolatorA stovetop coffee maker that’s easy to use and comes in four colors (or the classic silver). It’s currently my favorite way to make strong coffee.

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Areaware Bottle OpenerWhy pay $14 A piece of wood, a bent nail, and a magnet? This video explains why.

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Breville One-Touch Tea MakerIf you like your tea to be as close to perfection as possible, this robot is at your service.

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Scansnap ix100 Mobile ScannerA tiny wireless document scanner with a USB chargeable battery. Toss it in your bag and you won’t know it’s there until you need it.

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Blackwing 602 pencilI love the Blackwing 602 pencil, and have used it for many years. “Half the Pressure, Twice the Speed.”

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Mysteries of the Unknown: Inside the World of the Strange and Unexplained “The Universe is not only stranger than we suppose, but stranger than we can suppose.”

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Molecules: The Elements and the Architecture of EverythingWith beautiful photography, this book covers molecules — inorganic, organic, acids, bases, soaps, solvents, oils, sweeteners, and other common substances — highlighting their similarities and differences. Suddenly, the physical world makes a lot more sense.

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Kano computerThe cute-looking Raspberry Pi powered Kano computer was made for kids to learn how to code their own music, games, and software.

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Stress reducing mushroomsFirebox sells four varieties of rubber mushrooms designed to reduce symptoms of stress. They are described as being "slightly phallic" in appearance.

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Catnip joints for catsHumans have smoked catnip. Results are mixed. Don’t let your cat smoke them.

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The Complete Ripley NovelsAll five Thomas Ripley novels by the great Patricia Highsmith. I’ve never had so much fun rooting for a murderous sociopath.

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Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY ProjectsI wrote this book because I didn’t see any DIY books for dads and daughters. But, whether you are a mom, dad, aunt, uncle, or friend of a kid of any gender, I promise you’ll find projects in here that everyone will enjoy.

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Briggs & Riley Baseline Carry-On BagIncredibly sturdy bag holds clothes in garment section without wrinkling them. You can overpack it and then ratchet it down to size. Model U122CX-4 is the one to get.

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Mophie Space PackIt’s a protective case for the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s that contains a 1700mAh battery and 16GB of built-in storage. That’s enough for about 7 hours of video.

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Rubber band ballThis is just the starter nucleus for a much bigger rubber band ball that you will make.

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The CodeJane and I have been having a great time with The Code, a magic effect created by actor and magician Andy Nyman. It's made by Theory 11 and consists of a deck of playing cards and a one-hour instructional DVD that includes several excellent mind-reading routines you can perform with the deck.

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Grifiti Slim Wrist PadMy wrists rest on this rubber pad while I use my keyboard. I’ve had one for years, and after it fell apart, I bought a new one. They improved it.

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Love GloveWith three cats in the house, fur gets all over our furniture and clothes. I bought a Love Glove to attack the problem at its source – on the cats.

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The Magician and the Cardsharp: The Search for America's Greatest Sleight-of-Hand ArtistA well-told story about two men with intersecting lifelong goals. The first man was Allen Kennedy (1865–1961) a professional card cheat who spent many years perfecting his technique to deal cards from the center of the deck undetected. The second man was Dai Vernon (1894–1992), one of the most highly-respected sleight-of-hand magicians in history.

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Seeker's Quest NecklaceThis golden snitch with stunning silver wings hanging on a silver chain "pays homage to your favorite wizardly sport," says our longtime sponsor Shana Logic. And if Quidditch isn't your bag, check out Shana Logic's enticing shop of high-quality, handmade, and independently-designed jewelry, artwork, apparel, and other curious creation

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Audio-Technica LP60 and Audioengine A2 combinationForget those vinyl-shredding, vintage-inspired all-in-one units. The Audio Technica AT-LP60 is a fantastic beginner (or revivalist) turntable for the price. Its built-in pre-amp means all you need to listen is either your existing stereo amp and speakers or something like the elegant Audioengine A2 powered bookshelf speakers that deliver a lovely, warm sound for a small room. This $300 combination is hard to beat unless you hit the second-hand scene.

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She & Him: ClassicsThe lovely and talented duo of She & Him, aka Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward, bring their 1960s AM-radio joy to an LP of cover tunes previously performed by the likes of Dusty Springfield, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, and Billie Holiday.

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San Francisco, Portrait of a City: 1940-1960In the 1940s and 1950s, photographer Fred Lyon, now 89, magnificently captured the enticing noir decadence of San Francisco's Barbary Coast and the majesty of the rest of the city.

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Toy Stories: Photos of Children from Around the World and Their Favorite ThingsGabriele Galimberti photographed children from the US, India, Malawi, China, Iceland, and more than 50 other countries with their favorite toys.

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Howtoons: Tools of Mass ConstructionFrom the extreme maker trio of Nick Dragotta (comic artist), Saul Griffith (inventor), and Ingrid Dragotta (toy designer), another collection of killer DIY projects (complete with engineering principles) explained through comics, from the classic marshmallow shooter to a soda bottle submarine.

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Alice's Adventures in WonderlandPop surrealist master Camille Rose Garcia magnificent, dark, and dreamy paintings perfectly complement Lewis Carroll's classic tale.

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Black Toilet PaperOf course it's expensive, "the Renova black toilet roll really is the ultimate in luxury tissue."

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Kindle PaperwhiteLightweight, a built-in reading light, and the battery lasts for ages. Some books can truly be experienced only on paper; for most though, e-ink does the trick just fine.

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Soviet Ghosts: The Soviet Union Abandoned: A Communist Empire in DecayPhotographer Rebecca Litchfield's gorgeous and haunting book documents abandoned towns, factories, prisons, hospitals, theaters, and military bases in the Soviet Union and former Eastern Bloc.

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Anthology of American Folk MusicIn the late 1940s, avant-garde filmmaker, artist, and mystic Harry Smith scoured his massive collection of 78 rpm blues, country, cajun, jazz, and gospel records to compile what would become one of the most important collections of recorded music in history, influencing everyone from Bob Dylan and Joan Baez to Jerry Garcia and Jack White. Finally reissued this year on vinyl, some copies can still be found in the limited wood slipcase.

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The Complete Zap Comix Boxed SetFinally! A sumptuous reissue of the series born in 1968 that launched the careers of R. Crumb, Robert Williams, S. Clay Wilson, Gilbert Shelton, Paul Mavrides, Victor Moscoso, Spain Rodriguez, and the entire culture of underground comix. Far fucking out.

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75 Years of Marvel Comics: From the Golden Age to the Silver ScreenA massive lavish hardcover history of the most influential comic book publisher in the world where Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, and their tireless colleagues dreamt up Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, The Fantastic Four, the X-Men, and hundreds of other fantastic freaks.

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You Have To Fucking EatThe genius new book from funnyman Adam Mansbach of Go the Fuck to Sleep fame and illustrated by Owen Brozman. It's funny cause it's true...too true.

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Batman The Complete TV Series Limited EditionThe only Batman worth watching, that is, the 1960s TV series, is now out on Blu-ray and DVD in a boxed set loaded with Bat-books, a Batmobile, Bat-trading cards, and other Bat-bonuses.

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Useless BoxA classic. Switch it on and it immediately switches itself off. That's all it does. And somehow, it's incredibly compelling. Build your own with this satisfying kit.

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littleBits Electronics Synth KitGet your kids (or yourself) started with creative electronics and mutant muzik using color-coded modules to make various analog synthesizers sure to delight the creators and annoy innocent bystanders, until they get a turn. Also check out the littleBits Electronics Arduino Coding Kit, Space Kit (in partnership with NASA), and cloudBit Starter Kit for your Internet of Things ideas.

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Sonos Wireless HiFiA dozen years after it launched, the Sonos system continues to outshine any other products for moving music wirelessly through your house. The family of speakers, integrated speaker/amps, and music streaming hubs operate on their own wireless mesh network (or your regular WiFi if you prefer) and are controlled via an intuitive app. Sure, it accesses most music streaming services and your own digital music library, but it also enables you to stream any analog audio -- including those seductive vinyl sounds -- to anywhere in your house without hassling with wires or the annoyances of Apple's AirPlay.

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Pom Pom Tokyo BeanieKeep your grey matter warm with this poptastic Pom Pom Tokyo Beanie, from our fine sponsors at American Apparel. Also available in New York, Paris, London, and Los Angeles styles, each in a unique colorway and topped with a cheeky pom pom.

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Winsor McCay, The Complete Little Nemo 1905-1927Taschen has released a gorgeous full-color collection of all 549 Little Nemo comics, starring the little boy who became “One of the greatest dream voyagers of the 20th century.” Created by artist Winsor McCay (1869–1934), the restless sleeper and vivid dreamer Nemo inspired generations of artists from R. Crumb to Federico Fellini with his adventures from bed to Slumberland, a realm of “colorful companions, psychedelic scenery, and thrilling escapades.”

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ZAQ Dew LiteMist Aromatherapy Essential Oil DiffuserA luminous little device that transforms water and your favorite essential oils into a fragrant mist. Lavender or chamomile help some folks sleep better; other oils may brighten your mood or create a pleasing sense of space.

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Excalibur DehydratorOne of the best investments I’ve made in my kitchen, and my nutritional health. Excalibur is a reliable brand; I bought the EXD500W 5-Tray model in white, but larger or more complex models are available, too. You can use it to make everything from jerky to dried fruit to yogurt to flax crackers to raw vegan sweets and flatbreads.

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Vietnamese Coffee KitIf someone you love is a fan of Vietnamese coffee—thick coffee with sweetened condensed milk—this home-brew kit may be just the thing. Comes with a traditional Phin brewer, coffee, and instructions.

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Brenthaven MetroLite BackpackThis backpack was designed to be “TSA-Friendly,” meaning that you can “butterfly” it open at checkpoints for easier and faster trips through the screening machines. I like it because the shoulder straps are super ergonomic and comfortable; there are a ton of little pockets and folds to keep your stuff super organized; and there’s a cushy layer of foam at the base to protect your laptop or tablet. Best backpack I’ve ever had.

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Anker Astro Mini 3200mAh Lipstick-Sized Portable External Battery Charger We all need to be able to recharge our smartphones on the go. I far prefer carrying what feels like an extra tube of lipgloss in my purse to a bulky Mophie-style case. This has saved my ass many times. Comes in manly colors, too.

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Pop Yeh Yeh - Psychedelic Rock from Singapore and Malaysia 1964-1970The psychedelic rock movement in Singapore and Malaysia known as “Pop Yeh Yeh” has never been given the worldwide attention it deserves. This Sublime Frequencies compilation painstakingly researched and documented by my brother Carl Hamm is the first of its kind to focus solely on Malay rock groups of this region. Available on vinyl or CD.

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When I Reach That Heavenly Shore: Unearthly Black Gospel, 1926-1936A stunning 3 CD/LP music set on Tompkins Square records. “Among the most powerful music to be captured on 78 rpm in America during the 1920s & 1930s are those recordings of black sanctified and gospel singing. Ranging from plaintive mourning to unbridled ecstasy, the sacred music from this time period represents a flowering of diverse and idiosyncratic rural songs styles. At no time was there a wider panorama of religious songs in America.” The pre-war 78s in this compilation are from the extensive personal collection of historical music specialist and 7-time Grammy nominee Christopher King. Of the 42 tracks included, 34 have never before been reissued.

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LifeSpan Fitness Treadmill DeskThis tool changed my life, by transforming my work time from sedentary time to active time. You could build your own from scratch for less, or buy cheaper versions, but I have test-driven a number of treadmill desks and have settled on this one for my home. It is an excellent product, and the best investment I have made in a long time for my health and happiness. Much has been written about treadmill desks helping with weight management, and reducing cancer and cardiovascular disease risks, but one great bonus for me: uplifted mood, and clarity of thinking. It’s a kick-ass productivity tool, and I believe these should be the norm, not sit-down desks.

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Isa Does It: Amazingly Easy, Wildly Delicious Vegan Recipes for Every Day of the WeekYou don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy vegan cookbook queen Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s latest, which focuses on tips and strategies for making home-cooked, plant-based, nutritious and yummy meals in 30 minutes or less. 150 recipes for weeknight delights. It's easy.

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An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth: What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything Through tweets and videos shared from space, astronaut Chris Hadfield has become a powerful force in the repopularization of space exploration. He’s a wonderful storyteller, and this book is an instant classic for all who wonder what lies out in the great blue yonder.

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Vitamix 5200sIf I could have just one gadget in my kitchen, it’d be my Vitamix. I use it every day to prepare fruit and veggie smoothies, soups, hummus, whole grain and pseudograin (buckwheat, quinoa) flours, even nut butters and coconut milk. Total life-changer gadget. This is the higher-end model that is useful for more sophisticated cooks; there are simpler models in the Vitamix line with only two speed settings. If money’s tight or you don’t need infinitely variable speed settings, they’re a fine option, too.

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Omega J8004 Masticating JuicerI never knew how much I needed this juicer until I had one. I use it to make green juice every day, as part of a plant-centric, health-promoting diet. I love fresh juice, and I love picking out fresh local ingredients to juice at my neighborhood weekly farmer’s market: herbs, lettuce, kale, chard, carrot tops, apples, cucumbers, celery, and citrus fruits generally end up in my daily blend. I’m also a fan of not paying $12 a glass for the stuff at a juice bar. This juicer allows you to include more pulp and fiber, which I believe is healthier than more strained, pure-liquid juice.

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Organic Buckwheat PillowForm-fitting and an amazing solution for side sleepers. I find that I sleep more soundly and my chronic neck and shoulder pain is much more manageable when I sleep on a buckwheat pillow. You can pour out some of the hulls until you get the volume just right. Also, if you have this heavy thing? You’ll win every single pillow fight.

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Fitbit FlexThis was one of the gadgets that really helped me transform my life and my approach to health and fitness this year. I bought one for several loved ones, too. The Fitbit One is great, but I kept losing mine. The Fitbit Force has more features, but it feels too bulky to me. The Flex is just right for tracking steps and sleep. Tip for treadmill desk users: Just stick it in a pocket or around your belt while you’re on the treadmill, to more accurately capture steps while at your treadmill desk.

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Logitech UE 984-000298 Mobile Boombox Bluetooth Speaker and Speakerphone It’s everything I wanted in a speaker set for travel: light, powerful, and doubles as a speakerphone. I have a compact work space at home, too, and it’s my primary source for laptop audio there.

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Bonavita Electric Gooseneck KettleI’m one of those people who burns out stove-top kettles and pots of boiling water all the time. No more. This model of Bonavita’s electric kettle offers variable temperature controls for coffee and tea connoisseurs who want precision. There’s a cheaper model for about half the price without that feature, which may suit you just as well. Both are recommended.

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Lodge L9OG3 Pre-Seasoned Round Griddle, 10.5-inchI use my cast-iron griddle for everything from oven-baked flatbreads to stove-top pancakes to slow-fried tofu. Best $15 I ever spent. If it loses its lustre, coat it in coconut oil and bake for an hour or so at 350º, and it’ll out-fry any teflon pan with no weird synthetic particles degrading into your food over time.

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Mikael Jorgensen & Greg O'KeeffeSynth-o-licious electronic experimentalism from Wilco’s keyboardist, who joined Boing Boing for an edition of our in-flight entertainment channel on Virgin America this year.

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Breaking Bad: The Complete SeriesYes, it’s a pricey, ostentatious, indulgent collection marketed to helplessly addicted fans, but it’s also available at ⅔ the original price now, and if you’re a true Breaking Bad junkie, no price is too high for that 99% pure blue stuff. Tight, tight, tight, yeah!

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eBags Mother Lode TLS Mini 21" Wheeled Duffel Best value luggage I’ve ever owned, OCD heaven. Available with zip-up “packing cubes” you can roll and stuff garments or electronics into, to further compress items and make the best use of space. Tons of pockets and flaps to organize your stuff. No matter how long my trip, I tend to carry only this bag now, and it easily stuffs into overhead compartments on most commercial flights. All this for about $150.

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Check It Out: Season 1 & 2 Outsider comedy from Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim (Tim and Eric’s Awesome Show Great Job), starring John C. Reilly. I have watched every episode many times and each time I watch them again, I ROFL.

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A subscription to The Hearts of Space Slow music for fast times: Hearts of Space, the long-running, pioneering ambient electronic music radio show from Stephen Hill, now online. This is my daily work background music.

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Passion Natural Water-Based Lubricant - 55 Gallon Drum “Note: Includes pump.”

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The Good Web BundleBrings the humble bundle model to subscription websites: pay once, get access to Metafilter, MLKSHK, Thinkup, Newsblur and The Toast. Support great indie sites!

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MacBook ProAlmost 2015, may as well upgrade.

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Lenovo Yoga 3 ProIn the category of lightweight PC laptops as nice as MacBooks, Lenovo still has it by a country mile. The convertible Yoga 3 Pro is best bet for most users, but battery life is weak. Those wanting a more traditional, basic laptop design should take the X240 rather than cheaper Yoga models.

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The Complete ElfquestEmerging somewhere between old-world picturebooks, Japanese animation and American comics, Elfquest is the perfect fantasy antidote to Tolkien and his derivatives. My favorite graphic novel series of all time is back in print, and the first epic installation--700 pages!-- is just $20. See Wendy Pini's fabulous art up-close in the massive and beautiful Elfquest Gallery Edition, an absolute must-have for fans.

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The Art of OmniA collection of weird and wonderful imaginings as published in the legendary science fiction magazine. Introduced by Ben Bova.

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iPad AirThin, cleanly-designed and refined to perfection, Apple's larger model is the tablet of choice now that the gigantic iPhone 6 Plus muscles in on the iPad Mini's portability party. Quality Android alternatives include the Nexus 9 and the powerful Nvidia Shield.

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Alesis V49An excellent and inexpensive MIDI controller, given the edge over most in its price range thanks to full-size semi-weighted keys, aftertouch, and an absolutely perfect squared-off minimal design. The VI49 has more controls, and a higher price tag. 25- and 60-key versions of both are also available.

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PlayStation 4Sony's game console has the edge on the competition this time around, though the XBox One and Wii U are perfectly good if you (or a little one) has an eye for a particular game or character.

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BlackMagic Pocket CameraUnparalleled, film-like video quality in a point-and-shoot, though it doesn't do stills and you'll be tempted to bulk it up with accessories. The Digital Bolex offers a more complete, but much larger and more expensive package. Still shooters wanting something similarly tiny can't go wrong with the Sony RX100 mk III.

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Alienware AlphaSmaller than a game console, Alienware's Alpha is the best-designed mini gaming PC going, and at $549 offers superior performance to anything you might build from scratch at that budget. It'll be perfect for SteamOS, too--when it arrives. Storage and memory can be upgraded, but the video card cannot.

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King Cube IceStill the One.

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Pound o' DiceApproximately 100 dice in all sorts of types, styles and colors: 6, 8, 10, 12, 20 & 30-sided will comprise most of the bag. You can also order D6 only.

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Amiga ForeverFor $10, get the software you need for no-nonsense emulation of the world's first psychedelic computer. Dozens of classic games and demos come free, but the rest aren't hard to find. And the C64 emulator comes free.

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Nomad KeyTiny, ultra-durable, no-frustration USB cables that can live on a keychain; the lightning connector edition never leaves my wallet.

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SenseSense sits on your bedside table and combines the insight of your sleep patterns with the data of the environment in your bedroom, including noise, light, temperature, humidity and particles in the air. When you know what helps or hinders your sleep, you can fix it.

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Twin Peaks Box SetThe new series starts next year; get caught up on the dense, mysterious 2-seasons-and-a-movie original to ready yourself.

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Minecraft LegoThe expansive sandbox game/simulator/religion, without the expanse.

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Blank Playing CardsMake your own games! Or just stare at them. Whatever.

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JengaThis classic gift stacks up well against the others in this guide.

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Bacon SoapWhy buy mass-produced Bacon-scented soap when you can get it deliciously hand-made?

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Unused PunchcardsYou just never know when you'll need to tell an IBM 1400 where to get off.

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Anker 40W 5-Port desktop USB charger with PowerIQTM technologyWhen guests need to charge their phones and tablets I am glad to have this Anker 40w 5-port charger around. With five 'Power IQTM' enabled ports this charger auto-senses the right charging speed, up to 2.4A per port, regardless the device.

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Xtreme Charge XP100 12V desulfating battery chargerCar, motorcycle or boat batteries constantly dead? This incredible charger has resurrected dead batteries and keeps my new ones topped off.

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Anker Astro E4 13000mAh external USB batteryThe Anker Astro E4 is my favorite external battery. With enough juice to recharge iPhones and iPads several times, this is the battery I keep with me on road trips and long days out of the office.

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littleBits Electronics Deluxe KitMy young daughter and I have spent hours working together with this fantastic set of littleBits modules. LittleBits are solder free, electronics modules that snap together magnetically. Starting with simple instructions, provided in the kit or online, you'll be amazed at what you and your kids can make.

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William Shakespeare's Star Wars Trilogy: The Royal Imperial Boxed SetStar Wars, as told by the Bard of Avon. This iambic pentameter tribute to Star Wars, by Ian Doescher, is accompanied by fantastic wood cuts and art work. The set is a perfect holiday gift.

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Bacon PressAs I require my bacon crispy and perfectly flat, this Norpro bacon press is one of the best Hanukkah gifts I ever received! A favorite kitchen tool for applying heat to both sides of a frying object.

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LEGO Creator Volkswagen T1 Camper Van 10220This iconic 1962 VW microbus is very likely the next LEGO project my kid and I undertake as I doubt they'll be releasing a Vanagon anytime soon.

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Autopoint Jumbo All-American Pencil, 0.9mm tipI love the paneled barrel and monstrous eraser on my Autopoint All-American. The thick .9mm lead works well for me but finer, and thicker, diameters are available. For $5 there is no better mechanical pencil.

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2 Wind Up FlashlightsPerfect stocking stuffers, these lights have lasted me for years!

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BMO Adventure Time Hoodie"Oh no, it's much more dangerous than you think!" -- BMO

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Nomiku Sous Vide Immersion CirculatorI love my Nomiku Sous Vide Immersion Circulator! This Kickstarted kitchen tool quickly turns a standard pot or bucket into a sous vide cooker.

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Classic Star Trek SocksPity the stocking that gets stuffed with Red.

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Busy Buddy Kibble Nibble, treat dispensing dog toyThis odd purple egg from a 1960s Science Fiction television show is actually a near indestructible dog toy. My Great Pyrenees and my Cavalier King Charles both love it, covering both ends of the dog-size spectrum.

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Diableries: Stereoscopic Adventures in HellBrian May's collection of demonic stereoscopic images is fantastic. The included viewer and fantastic backstory of the collection complete the experience, making Diableries my favorite hardback this year!

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Opinel No.8 Picnic KnifeThis strong bladed, wood handled $14 pocket knife is a real winner. The stainless steel blades take on a nice patina and only gets better with age.

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Roku R3500R streaming stickI've cancelled my satellite service and get all my entertainment via Roku and the internet. The streaming stick is fully featured, and very small.

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Amazon's best selling herb grinderThis $7 herb grinder is the perfect stocking stuffer for someone who needs an herb grinder.

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Trimax T665LC Hardened Metal Disc Lock with Pouch & Reminder CableThis sturdy lock comes with a bright orange reminder cable and helps secure my easy to steal motorcycles when I park in big cities.

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Misty: The Proud Cloud by Hugh HoweyThis fantastic children's book by Hugh Howey tells the story of Misty, a cloud learning to be proud of what she can do.

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Muppet Whatnot KitMake your own Muppet? These kits are wonderful fun, regardless of age, for anyone who loves the Muppets!

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Heavy Duty FoxglovesGreat for the garden and for working outside. Really fit to your hands, and hug the wrists to keep dirt out. You won't even notice you're wearing them.

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Drawing the Head and HandsFor the artist in your family, an incredible study in human portraiture. Also check out the figure drawing version.

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BagguEndlessly handy for carrying groceries, mail or hundreds of tiny elves.

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How to Cook Without a BookCovers the important basics of cooking, and introduces you to the concepts of eyeballing measurements and adjusting taste. A friendly approach to low-stress cooking!

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Neverending StoryStill getting residuals from this.

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