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Tess Gerritsen

Photo of Tess Gerritsen

Photo: © Jacqueline de Haas

About the Author

New York Times bestselling author Tess Gerritsen earned international acclaim for her first novel of suspense, Harvest. She introduced Detective Jane Rizzoli in The Surgeon (2001) and Dr. Maura Isles in The Apprentice (2002) and has gone on to write numerous other titles in the celebrated Rizzoli & Isles series, most recently The Mephisto Club, The Keepsake, Ice Cold, The Silent Girl, Last to Die, Die Again, and I Know a Secret. Her latest standalone novel is the thriller Playing with Fire. A physician, Tess Gerritsen lives in Maine.

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Rizzoli & Isles

Author Essay

Tess Gerritsen’s No-Fail Gift Ideas
I am a bad mother.
Every Christmas, this is what I think because the holiday season fills me with such anxiety. I’m sure that other mothers are happily baking cookies, decorating trees, and finding perfect gifts for everyone. I, on the other hand, spend December in emotional meltdown because I have no idea what anyone wants for Christmas, and there’s no time to buy any of it anyway. In case you are like me, and clueless about what to buy your loved ones, I thought I would make your shopping easier this year and tell you what everyone absolutely needs to have. Everyone. If they don’t already have it, go out and buy it for them:

  • A good pair of binoculars. For looking at the stars. For bird-watching. Or for checking out that hot neighbor in the bikini.
  • A fire extinguisher. Even though you hope you’ll never have to use it.
  • A carbon monoxide monitor. Even though you hope you’ll never have to use it.
  • A world globe, mounted on a stand. Yes, I know, there are plenty of digital maps on the Internet, but there’s something about touching and twirling a physical representation of the world. You start to notice countries you didn’t know existed. You begin to comprehend just how far away Australia really is. You begin to dream about visiting that little speck in the ocean called Kapingamarangi (I have, and it’s gorgeous). You understand that the world is both bigger and smaller than you ever imagined. One of the best Christmas presents I ever got was the globe that I now keep right beside my desk.
  • A Scrabble set.  For those nights when the electricity’s out, your in-laws are staying the night, and you want to prove to them that you really are smarter than a fifth grader. And finally:
  • A bartender’s manual. Just because.

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