New cof­fee ta­ble books that make great hol­i­day gifts

The Progress-Index - At Home - - REAL ESTATE -

As so much read­ing moves into dig­i­tal spa­ces, cof­fee ta­ble books with their lav­ish de­signs and en­ter­tain­ing con­tent re­main a peren­nial sta­ple in any home, say lit­er­ary ex­perts.

“Cof­fee ta­ble books are a win­dow into one’s per­sonal tastes and in­ter­ests,” says Rachel Kemp­ster, DK Pub­lish­ing’s di­rec­tor of mar­ket­ing and pub­lic­ity. “They also make the per­fect hol­i­day gift.”

Here are five new ti­tles to con­sider gift­ing this hol­i­day sea­son:

De­sign Love

De­sign­ing with LEGO Bricks is all the rage, thanks to “The LEGO Movie.” Be in vogue by giv­ing en­thu­si­asts a copy of “LEGO Ar­chi­tec­ture: The Visual Guide,” a beau­ti­fully il­lus­trated look at the artists, builders, and in­spi­ra­tion be­hind the LEGO Ar­chi­tec­ture se­ries.

Pack­aged in a sleek slip­case, this cof­fee ta­ble book comes with the added ben­e­fit of pro­tec­tion against -- cof­fee!

Maps Galore

From Ptolemy's world map to the lat­est maps of the moon and even Google Earth images, “Great Maps” pro­vides a

STATEPOINT fas­ci­nat­ing over­view of car­tog­ra­phy through the ages. Re­veal­ing the sto­ries be­hind 55 his­tor­i­cal maps by an­a­lyz­ing graphic close-ups, “Great Maps” also pro­files key car­tog­ra­phers and ex­plor­ers to ex­plore why each map was com­mis­sioned, who it was for and how they in­flu­enced nav­i­ga­tion, pro­pa­ganda, power, art, and pol­i­tics.

Fun with Pho­tog­ra­phy

You don’t have to have a spe­cial affin­ity for pho­tog­ra­phy to ap­pre­ci­ate, “Pho­tog­ra­phy: The De­fin­i­tive Visual His­tory.” A cel­e­bra­tion of the most iconic photographs and pho­tog­ra­phers of the past 200 years, this stun­ning book, writ­ten by world-renowned pho­tog­ra­pher, writer and broad­caster Tom Ang, traces the his­tory of pho­tog­ra­phy from its ori­gins to the dig­i­tal age.

The Stel­lar So­lar Sys­tem

Fea­tur­ing all-new 3D mod­els built us­ing data gath­ered by NASA and the Euro­pean Space Agency, “The Plan­ets” is an awe-in­spir­ing jour­ney through the So­lar Sys­tem, from Earth to Mars and beyond.

Viewed layer by layer, plan­ets and other ob­jects in the So­lar Sys­tem are taken out of the night sky and pre­sented on a clean white back­ground, re­veal­ing ev­ery de­tail of their sur­face and in­ter­nal anatomy in as­ton­ish­ing de­tail.

Look­ing at plan­ets, the Sun, hun­dreds of moons and thou­sands of as­ter­oids and comets, “The Plan­ets” in­cludes time­lines that chron­i­cle all ma­jor space mis­sions, right up to the lat­est Mars rovers, and in­fo­graph­ics that present fas­ci­nat­ing facts about all plan­ets and the So­lar Sys­tem in a fresh new way.

He­roes and Vil­lians

For pop cul­ture fans, con­sider “Mar­vel Comics Cover Art,” which brings to­gether an un­for­get­table gallery spot­light­ing the most iconic cov­ers, along with never-be­fore-seen con­cept art from all over the world. Cel­e­brat­ing 75 years of Mar­vel Comics, it fea­tures the likes of Spi­derMan, Iron Man, and The Avengers, as well as the writ­ers and artists who gave them life -- in­clud­ing Jack Kirby and Stan Lee.

More gift book ideas can be found at www.us.dk.com.

“A beau­ti­ful ob­ject that serves at once as art­work, in­for­ma­tion and the all-im­por­tant con­ver­sa­tion starter, is a gift that will never go out of style,” says Kemp­ster.

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