A selection of hand-picked books that not only look great on your coffee table or bookshelf but are also great little reads. A must-have to finish off any scheme.

  • Last printed in 1968, this is a unique guidebook from the late, great architectural writer Ian Nairn. Illustrated with the author’s snaps of the city, Nairn gives his readers an unpretentious portrait of the ‘collective masterpiece’ that is Paris.
  • The late John Berger, art critic, novelist and long-time smoker joins forces again with Turkish illustrator Selçuk Demirel. This charming pictorial essay suggests, through a series of brilliantly inventive illustrations, that society’s attitude to smoking is intolerant and paradoxical.
  • What happens when cataracts rob an art critic of his sight? John Berger, whose classic book Ways of Seeing has been in print for nearly forty years, joins forces with Turkish illustrator Selçuk Demirel to reflect on his own experience of loss of vision.
  • This delightful anthology - described in Gyles Brandreth’s introduction as ‘a plum pudding stuffed with good things’ - offers a diverse array of writers both old and new who have expressed their thoughts about Christmas with joy, nostalgia, grumpiness and wit. Includes selections from Dickens, Dostoevsky, P.G. Wodehouse, Kathy Lette, Ali Smith and Queen Victoria.
  • Each beautiful book in this collection expresses a wistful affection for a period in the past. Jonathan Keates writes on his secret passion for collecting vintage guide books; In On Dolls Some of the greatest thinkers and writers of our age, such as Baudelaire, Rilke, Freud and Kafka, meditate on play and the mysteries of inanimate life; and Joe Brainard’s cult classic chooses memories from his past each prefaced by the refrain ‘I Remember’. Includes the following titles:
    • The Portable Paradise by Jonathan Keates
    • On Dolls by Kenneth Gross
    • I Remember by Joe Brainard
  • Each of these books reveals a moment of sudden revelation. Lewis Way – an accidental millionaire  –had an epiphany which would lead him to devote his life and fortune to the return of the Jews to the Holy Land; Neurologist A.J. Lees was inspired by the writings of William Burroughs to find a groundbreaking new treatment for Parkinson’s Disease; and the late, great art critic John Berger relates his astonishing return to sight after a cataract operation, illustrated by Selçuk Demirel. Includes the following titles:
    • The Road to Apocalypse: The Extraordinary Journey of Lewis Way by Munro and Stanley Price
    • Mentored by a Madman: The William Burroughs Experiment by A.J. Lees
    • Cataract by John Berger, Illustrated by Selçuk Demirel
  • For the armchair traveller, three poetic journeys that fundamentally changed those who took them: Victorian designer William Morris records his travels across Iceland on a pony; Dennis Marks makes a journey to the eastern borderlands of Europe in the elusive footsteps of Joseph Roth; and Russian poet Osip Mandelstam writes his travel masterpiece on his visit to Armenia. Includes the following titles:
    • Questions of Travel: William Morris in Iceland by Lavinia Greenlaw
    • Wandering Jew: In Search of Joseph Roth by Dennis Marks
    • Journey to Armenia by Osip Mandelstam
  • EXILE collections
    As the great sociologist Richard Sennett writes, ‘Home is not a physical place but a mobile need; wherever one is, home is always to be found somewhere else.’ Three extraordinary writers reflect on the condition of exile. Includes the following titles:
    • Beautiful and Impossible Things: Selected Essays of Oscar Wilde, Introduced by Gyles Brandreth
    • The Foreigner: Two Essays on Exile by Richard Sennett
    • My Katherine Mansfield Project by Kirsty Gunn
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