Jhumpa Lahiri captured my heart this summer with her writing.
During sweltering commutes into the city, while waiting for the train in the hot sun, I clung to every word of The Namesake (still haven't seen the movie) followed closely by Interpreter of Maladies.
She's a writer whose every word contributes to the formation of a character, the person's life, and their feelings.
For me, on my train rides, she created a window into their worlds that I could stare through for hours. A window that I reluctantly shut each time my stop was announced.
If you're looking for a last-minute gift, pick up one of her books and take it home for someone. You just might find that you'll keep it as a gift to yourself.