She likes contemporary books and things that are moving. She also generally likes "realistic" books (i.e. not sci-fi/fantasy etc.) and tends not to be a massive fan of comedy books either (although she makes an exception for Adrian Mole).
Her favourite book she read last year was the Kite Runner and she really really likes films like the Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (which obviously is a book too) and Rabbit-Proof Fence which might give you ideas of the kind of thing she'd go for.
Any ideas of things that sound suitable would be greatly appreciated.