I am a huge fan of the coffee table book, now that we have a nice large coffee table I always have two books in a similar genre stacked together with a knick knack on top. I love the visual interest in creates to an otherwise utilitarian piece of furniture and I find they are great conversation starters at parties. Coffee table books also make great presents, no matter a persons interest there is a book out there and then your present seems very personalized and meaningful.
Right now on our table I have Beastie Boys Anthology: The Sounds of Silence which I bought for $4.99 at Urban Outfitters sometime in college and Eddie Trunk’s Essential Hard Rock and Heavy Metal which he bought last year and if your husband is a metal head like mine I highly suggest it. They are graced by a skull holding a black rose in its mouth that my husband bought while living in his first apartment, I think that given the subject matter of the books the skull fits nicely.
Now through Christmas I thought I would spotlight my favorite coffee table or cook books that might serve as gift inspiration, either for you or a loved one!
This week is When Wanders Cease to Roam: A Travelers Journal of Staying Put by Vivian Swift. In Spring of 2009 Mr. H and I took a trip to Seattle and fell in love with The Elliot Bay Cafe. On our second visit to the cafe on our three night trip I wandered through the large book store that adjoined the cafe. This is a book store for book lovers, it had nooks and crannies and that feeling that makes you want to curl up with tea and never stop reading. In my aimless wandering around the store I stumbled into the travel section that had a selection of books besides the ubiquitous Lonely Planet guides, and my eyes feel upon When Wanders Cease to Roam.
The cover was one that just called out to be touched and when I read the description on the back I felt an instant connection to the book. It was a fully illustrated tale her 20 years of wandering and then her settling down into a small Long Island town. As I was fresh off 8 months traveling through Europe and now was living with a Swedish man I figured that my wanderings were not over and to read about how someone else led a life like that sounded thrilling.
I promptly bought the book and the rest of the day I just wanted some quiet time to sit and pour over the beautiful pages. I got my chance the next morning as I always wake before Mr. H, I let him sleep in the hotel bed while I made tea and curled up on the chair and read through almost the whole book.
This is an example of the books illustrations, as you can see each season is represented in a way that draws you in and eager to see for yourself. The book follows the calendar year with each month having its own special musings and tales of her journeys. When we moved into our apartment at the beginning of October I was feeling rather blue about the up coming winter weather and how I would survive my first full cold weather and snowy months. I sat down with the book and through the watercolors and short stories I was comforted that I too will survive winter to come into spring refreshed.