An inspiring knitting book can be one of the best gifts you can give a beginning knitter.
Check out these recommendations. Knit Luck has a fantastic rundown of knitting books especially for beginning knitters. Here's an excerpt:
One of the best things about a knitting hobby are the beautiful knitting books out there, filled with patterns, stories, photographs, recipes, tutorials, tips and tricks. Knitting books are your constant knitting friends, always there when you need inspiration or help with your knitting.
Cultivating a knitting book library is the best way to maintain a wealth of knitting knowledge at your fingertips. Multiple books give you different points of view about various techniques, helping you learn when a teacher isn't available, especially for those times when in mid-project you need immediate help and the LYS is closed.
This list should give you a great idea of what to look for at amazon, your local library or bookstore...