Best Coffee Table Books

A coffee table book is a hardcover book that is intended to sit on a coffee table or similar surface in an area where guests sit and are entertained, thus inspiring conversation or alleviating boredom. They tend to be oversized and of heavy construction, since there is no pressing need for portability. Subject matter is generally confined to non-fiction, and is usually visually-oriented. Pages consist mainly of photographs and illustrations, accompanied by captions and small blocks of text, as opposed to long prose. Since they are aimed at anyone who might pick the book up for a light read, the analysis inside is often more basic and with less jargon than other books on the subject. Because of this, the term "coffee table book" can be used pejoratively to indicate a superficial approach to the subject.

David R. Brower is sometimes credited with inventing the "modern coffee table book". While serving as executive director of the Sierra Club, he had the idea for a series of books that combined nature photography and writings on nature, with, as he put it, "a page size big enough to carry a given image’s dynamic. The eye must be required to move about within the boundaries of the image, not encompass it all in one glance." The first such book, "This is the American Earth", with photographs by Ansel Adams and others and text by Nancy Newhall, was published in 1960; the series became known as the "Exhibit Format" series, with 20 titles eventually published.
1

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3.84 avg rating — 142,538 ratings
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3

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4.81 avg rating — 21 ratings
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4

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4.34 avg rating — 1,781 ratings
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5

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4.20 avg rating — 916 ratings
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6

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4.28 avg rating — 6,304 ratings
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7

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4.25 avg rating — 157 ratings
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8

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4.30 avg rating — 1,337 ratings
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9

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4.06 avg rating — 979 ratings
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10

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4.03 avg rating — 31,487 ratings
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11

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4.62 avg rating — 26 ratings
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12

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4.62 avg rating — 64,572 ratings
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13

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4.26 avg rating — 2,859 ratings
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14

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4.46 avg rating — 163 ratings
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15

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4.94 avg rating — 16 ratings
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16

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4.17 avg rating — 539 ratings
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17

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4.84 avg rating — 37 ratings
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18

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4.24 avg rating — 142 ratings
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19

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4.41 avg rating — 176 ratings
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20

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3.81 avg rating — 67 ratings
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21

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4.65 avg rating — 286 ratings
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22

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4.26 avg rating — 27,580 ratings
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23

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3.33 avg rating — 248 ratings
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24

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4.42 avg rating — 1,051 ratings
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25

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4.31 avg rating — 16 ratings
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26

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 2,363 ratings
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27

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4.53 avg rating — 43 ratings
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28

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4.29 avg rating — 41 ratings
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29

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4.57 avg rating — 1,275 ratings
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29

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4.12 avg rating — 831,256 ratings
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31

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4.16 avg rating — 19 ratings
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32

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4.18 avg rating — 11 ratings
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33

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3.55 avg rating — 130 ratings
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33

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it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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35

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3.21 avg rating — 108 ratings
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36

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3.49 avg rating — 49 ratings
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36

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4.26 avg rating — 178 ratings
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38

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4.62 avg rating — 100 ratings
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38

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4.85 avg rating — 68 ratings
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40

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4.41 avg rating — 861 ratings
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41

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4.08 avg rating — 2,985 ratings
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42

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4.67 avg rating — 18 ratings
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43

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3.79 avg rating — 99 ratings
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44

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4.33 avg rating — 702 ratings
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45

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4.24 avg rating — 2,062 ratings
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45

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4.33 avg rating — 6 ratings
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47

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3.91 avg rating — 279 ratings
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48

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4.46 avg rating — 113 ratings
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48

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4.14 avg rating — 97 ratings
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48

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4.25 avg rating — 4 ratings
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48

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4.26 avg rating — 42 ratings
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48

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4.38 avg rating — 13 ratings
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48

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4.13 avg rating — 61 ratings
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48

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it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 9 ratings
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48

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4.05 avg rating — 21 ratings
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56

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3.80 avg rating — 124,134 ratings
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56

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4.67 avg rating — 9 ratings
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56

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it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 6 ratings
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59

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2.78 avg rating — 9 ratings
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59

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4.44 avg rating — 135 ratings
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59

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4.98 avg rating — 42 ratings
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62

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4.36 avg rating — 11 ratings
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62

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4.59 avg rating — 282 ratings
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64

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4.53 avg rating — 70 ratings
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64

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4.14 avg rating — 162 ratings
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64

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3.75 avg rating — 4 ratings
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64

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4.45 avg rating — 55 ratings
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64

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3.68 avg rating — 271,981 ratings
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69

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4.83 avg rating — 6 ratings
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69

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4.43 avg rating — 53 ratings
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69

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4.21 avg rating — 47 ratings
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69

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4.52 avg rating — 872 ratings
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73

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it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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73

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4.58 avg rating — 50 ratings
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75

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4.13 avg rating — 416 ratings
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75

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4.52 avg rating — 3,080 ratings
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75

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4.62 avg rating — 490 ratings
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78

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4.27 avg rating — 127 ratings
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79

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3.83 avg rating — 472 ratings
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80

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4.45 avg rating — 164 ratings
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80

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3.48 avg rating — 29 ratings
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82

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4.53 avg rating — 174 ratings
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82

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4.54 avg rating — 272 ratings
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82

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4.58 avg rating — 138 ratings
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85

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4.67 avg rating — 3 ratings
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85

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4.52 avg rating — 354 ratings
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87

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4.44 avg rating — 6,213 ratings
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88

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4.39 avg rating — 67 ratings
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89

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4.66 avg rating — 121 ratings
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89

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4.38 avg rating — 186 ratings
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91

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4.51 avg rating — 41 ratings
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92

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4.44 avg rating — 9 ratings
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92

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4.22 avg rating — 9 ratings
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94

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4.28 avg rating — 1,204 ratings
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94

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4.16 avg rating — 160 ratings
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94

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4.15 avg rating — 443 ratings
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94

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4.13 avg rating — 15 ratings
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98

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it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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99

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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100

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4.24 avg rating — 224 ratings
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Comments Showing 1-5 of 5 (5 new)

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message 1: by Regina (new)

Regina Long Very good coffee table books are:
'Coffee Table Poetry: Experiencing the Power of Poetic Literature'
'Teaching In Elementary Schools: The Real Deal'
''Poetry from the Heart'
All of these books were written by Retired Educator/Author Regina Long Southall
Go to:
http://outskirtspress.com/coffeetable...
http://outskirtspress.com/teachingine...
amazon.com
barnes&noble.com


message 2: by Booklovinglady (last edited Jul 17, 2016 02:48AM) (new)

Booklovinglady It always amazes me (and annoys me, te be honest) to see Gnomes (#11) as a book by Wil Huygen, because it is not. Yes, Will Huygen wrote the texts, but here in the Netherlands, where the book originated, it is first and foremost considered to be one of the Rien Poortvliet books. See also the book's entry in the Royal Dutch Library, where Rien Poortvliet is mentioned as the author and Will Huygen as contributor, as well as the Dutch publication, Leven en Werken van de Kabouter. The description of the Dutch edition cleary mentions that Rien's drawings are the main ingredient, with the 'scientific 'text written around them. Sorry, but I really had to get this of my chest... :-)

It's rather discouraging to see that for some editions Rien Poortvliet wasn't even mentioned (which I corrected) because there wouldn't even have been a book without Rien....

There is a museum dedicated to his work, by the way: Rien Poortvliet Museum. And absolutely gorgeous calendars with Rien's work are still being published every year.


message 3: by Christopher (new)

Christopher Conrad I like this list. Came across several must-reads for my own coffee table. Nothing like art that inspires while you're waiting somewhere. ;)


message 4: by Karen (new)

Karen German Coffee table books are my favorite. I love vivid images and quirky excerpts!


message 5: by Booklovinglady (new)

Booklovinglady Christopher wrote: "Hello, I'm author/photographer Christopher Conrad promoting my new book "Quotos" by offering free ebooks on Kindle for the next 3 days. Hurry before this $6.99 book goes back to full price...."

Do stop promoting your own book like this... It's annoying.


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