Apple has just introduced a new way for you to buy gifts for friends and relatives. The iBooks Store has added the ability to give iBooks to those on your shopping list. It's been possible to send apps to others as gifts since 2010, and music or videos from the iTunes Store for many years.
Buying those gifts is actually quite simple: When you find a book that you just have to give to someone as a present, click on the drop-down arrow next to the price (on OS X Mavericks machines with the iBooks app). On iOS devices, tap the Share button from the store page for the iBook and you'll be presented with a Gift Book option.
In both versions of the iBooks Store, you're then provided with a place to enter the email address of the recipient(s), a personal message and a day that you want to send the gift -- up to 90 days away.
Gifting iBooks is an easy way to introduce someone to the concept of electronic books if they're still clinging bitterly to their dead-tree editions, and it's all charged to whatever payment method you've set up for your Apple ID.