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10 best Mother's Day books of 2010

You know the favorites. But so does she. Here are the 10 best new books to give for Mother's Day.

By / May 4, 2010

After "Eat, Pray, Love," what makes a good Mother's Day gift for a book-loving mom?

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Looking for a book for Mom? Try Googling "10 best books for Mother's Day" and you pretty much already know what you will get. And let's face it: She's already read "Eat, Pray, Love." Last year you gave her "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society." And she's the one who first read "The Giving Tree" to you.

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So if you want to surprise Mom with something she doesn't already have, you might want to consider one of these 2010 releases. They're not classics – not yet – but at least a few of them are on their way.

1. "The Happiness Project," by Gretchen Rubin. How do you make a pretty-good life that much better? Gretchen Rubin researched wisdom literature from time immemorial and came up with a surprising to-do list that included cleaning her closets, making her bed, quitting nagging, and adjusting her attitude. A lot of it's just common sense but it works and Mom will thank you. (If she doesn't say, "I told you so.")

2. "A Mountain of Crumbs," by Elena Gorokhova. Elena Gorokhova's memoir of her childhood growing up in the cold war-era Soviet Union may be her own story but the book's true star is her mother. A doctor who loses two husbands – to alcoholism, illness, and the ravages of World War II – Gorokhova's mother is also an idealist who truly believes in the workers' state and isn't afraid to write to Stalin with suggestions on how to better it. She's tough, she's funny, and she has everything to do with who her daughter becomes.

3. "The Girl Who Fell from the Sky," by Heidi Durrow. This beautiful debut novel about a girl who tragically loses her family is harrowing at times, but it is also a sweet meditation on the power of a mother's love. Rachel Morse's mother was Danish and her father African-American. Rachel must now learn to live without her mother – although her grandmother and aunt, in their different ways, try to fill the gap – but, in many ways, Rachel's mother is with her wherever she goes.

4. "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand," by Helen Simonson. This marvelous love story is also a delightful glimpse into life in a small English village. Assuming that your mom likes Jane Austen and Alexander McCall Smith – and is there really a novel reader who doesn't? – this one is a slam-dunk.

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