Browsing my local library recently, I came across two books that would make great gifts for the book lover in your life.
Improbable Libraries: A Visual Journey to the World’s Most Unusual Libraries by Alex Johnson explores libraries that don’t fit one’s usual mental picture of “library”. Johnson, the son of two librarians, was clearly raised with a love of books. In Improbable Libraries, he showcases libraries found in airports, tents, subway stations, taxes, and hotels. He highlights libraries in rural locations that travel via mules, donkeys, camels, and elephants. There is also a section on the Little Free Library movement as well as on home libraries. Improbable Libraries is a delight to explore and will challenge your thinking on what a library can be.
Remarkable Books: The World’s Most Beautiful and Historic Works is a feast for the eyes. Using a chronological format, it traces the history of influential books from 3000 BCE to today. This oversized book features breathtaking photos, allowing readers to appreciate the history and beauty of these books, many of which are works of art. From the Dead Sea Scrolls to The Exeter Book to medieval illuminated manuscripts, the Gutenberg Bible, Leonardo da Vinci’s Codex Leicester; Robert Hooke’s Micrographia; Johnson’s Dictionary; Louis Braille’s Procedure for Writing Words, Music, and Plainsong in Dots, to Beatrix Potter’s The Tale of Peter Rabbit; and Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, each two-page spread is a visual delight. Both historians and book lovers will enjoy perusing and studying this impressive work.