Who’s the trickiest person to buy for on your Christmas list? Graham Norton, Joanna Bolouri, Jo Thomas and Joanna Nell fill us in!

Who’s the trickiest person to buy for on your Christmas list? Graham Norton, Joanna Bolouri, Jo Thomas and Joanna Nell fill us in!

From difficult dads, to best friends who already have everything – we all have someone on our Christmas present list who is impossible to buy for.

Luckily, some of our fabulous authors are here to share the trickiest names on their lists… and offer up some much-needed Christmas gifting inspiration!


Graham Norton, author of A Keeper

Some people are truly gifted when it comes to shopping for presents. I am not. My solution is to throw money at the problem so that while the gift may be unsuitable and disliked, it will at least be expensive so I can’t be accused of being ungenerous. My mother is always a challenge because whatever good ideas I might have had were all used up years ago.

Jo Thomas, author of A Winter Beneath the Stars

Hmmm, I think maybe my Mum. She always says she doesn’t want anything! And I always want to get her something she’d really enjoy. Usually I buy her books which I know she’ll enjoy, especially armchair travel ones.

Joanna Nell, author of The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village

My husband is always tricky to buy for, especially since he stopped wearing ties to work and shaved off his beard (who knew fancy beard products were a thing?). It’s the one time of the year when I wish he wasn’t such a “low maintenance man”. When I ask for ideas (we’re fairly pragmatic in our family), he reminds me that he already has more books on famous explorers than he has time to read, owns a shirt for every day of the week and the less said about that kite-surfing lesson I bought him one Christmas the better. This year I’ve decided to give my husband a voucher for dinner for two at our favourite restaurant. That way, hopefully I get to enjoy it too.

Joanna Bolouri, author of Relight My Fire

My dad, definitely.  He doesn’t like anything ‘specific’ so inevitably he gets something sensible from Marks and Spencer.

And for a gift that’s sure to be a winner, here are some brilliant new reads courtesy of our lovely authors!

 A Keeper Graham Norton Relight my fire  

Who’s the hardest person to buy for on your Christmas list?

Who’s the hardest person to buy for on your Christmas list?

Guys there’s no denying it, we’re feeling festive. We’re ready to wallow in tinsel and mull everything in sight, so we’ve asked some of our fabulous authors to give us a sneak peek into how they spend their Christmas. First up we’ve got Jill Mansell, Karen Cole, Daniela Sacerdoti and Beth Good telling us all about those hard-to-buy-for relatives on their Christmas list!


Jill Mansell, author of This Could Change Everything.

Oh, my other half of course. Nightmare! After 32 years together, I’m forbidden from buying him any more bright stripy shirts. Because apparently 748 of them is enough. He’s so unhelpful too – he just tells me not to worry about what to get him because there’s nothing he needs. Anyone who says that needs to be slung into a police cell until they can come up with a more constructive answer.

Karen Cole, author of Deliver Me

Probably both my teenaged sons. They just want money and anything I buy them will probably be ‘cringe.’

Daniela Sacerdoti, author of I Will Find You

Nobody really! I love buying gifts and I don’t usually run short of ideas. If I’m stuck I enjoy making up themed boxes, like a Night In box with things like pjs, nail polish, a book and some chocolate, or a Traveller’s box with a journal and a passport holder, a Winter Holidays box with gloves, a mug and hand cream…and more chocolate! I like being inventive and I like spoiling my friends and family.

Beth Good, author of Winter Without You

Probably my elderly father, who’s not in the best of health. He shouldn’t have the presents he used to love best – brazil nuts in dark chocolate and a bottle of cognac, for instance! – but is rarely impressed by anything cosy and practical, like a scarf or slippers.

For some fabulous reads to add to your Christmas list, check out what our lovely authors have to offer: