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  • Heidi Fiedler 3:00 pm on 2017/09/11 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , abandoned places, , , atlas obscura, beaches, , , , , , , castles from the air, , , , , , , , eric meole, ettore pettinaroli, gabriela logan, , , , , ireland: a luminous beauty, , james gracie, joel anderson, joshua foer, , , , , , , , , , , , , paris in color, passage to israel, , , sebastiao salgado, secret journeys of a lifetime, , , spectacular scotland, , , , , , , , , the world’s great wonders, , travel, , , , ,   

    50 Must-Have Coffee Table Books for the Armchair Traveler 

    For those who know exactly what they would do if they won the lottery (buy a gorgeous house, quit working, and travel the world!), this collection of books is a passport to colorful daydreams, exotic foods, and amazing experiences that can only be found far from home. But if your day job is still your job job, take a virtual trip via one of these classic photography books. You’re sure to return, if not rested, at least inspired.

    Atlas Obscura, by Joshua Foer, Ella Morton, and Dylan Thuras
    From the creators of the popular website comes a book with profiles of 700 of the strangest (and most interesting!) places on Earth. Covering everything from a pub inside a baobob tree to a bone museum in Italy, each entry is sure to disgust, intrigue, amuse, delight, or amaze you.

    Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travel, by Lonely Planet
    So many places and so little time to see them…so let the experts at Lonely Planet rank them for you. Never worry about whether you should see Budapest before Birmingham again!

    1000 Places to See Before You Die, by Patricia Schultz
    If for some reason you’ve run out of places to see, consult the ultimate checklist and get back out there. This guide will inspire budget travelers, thrill seekers, and cultural anthropologists alike.

    Humans of New York: Stories, by Brandon Stanton
    Profound, real, and empathetic, Stanton has a talent for turning interviews into heart-to-heart sessions that reveal just how similar we all are, whether we spend our days in New York City, abroad, or in our armchairs.

    Paris in Bloom, by Georgianna Lane
    Take the most beautiful city in the world and add flowers? Ooh la la! This gorgeous collection of photographs celebrates the flower markets, gardens, and other floral focal points of the city. Très belle!

    Wild Beautiful Places, by National Geographic
    Step into the National Geographic archives with this collection of vintage photographs that capture Nature at her best. Including interviews with the photographers, this book will inspire you to improve your own skills.

    Beaches, by Gray Malin
    Photographed by a favorite in the fashion industry, The Hamptons, Capri, the Amalfi Coast, and more are all on display in these masterful aerial shots that show off the easy breezy glam that is life at the beach.

    Drives of a Lifetime, by National Geographic
    Whether you’re flying solo or with someone you love, there’s nothing better than a road trip. As much a collection of gorgeous photographs as it is a travel planner, this book will guide you onto the open road with expert advice, solid maps, and the detours dreams are made of.

    Both Sides of Sunset, by Jane Brown and Marla Hamburg Kennedy
    Photographs from masters like Julian Schulman and Lee Friedlander come together to reveal the many layers of Los Angeles, a city that can be as sinful as it is sunny. This book is the next best thing to landing at LAX.

    Secret Journeys of a Lifetime, by National Geographic
    Top Ten lists, large photographs, maps, and informative sidebars make this a practical guide to deeper travel. With chapters titled “Spiritual Havens,” “Hidden Treasures,” and “The Road Less Travelled,” you’ll step into a world that is missed by many but never forgotten by those who discover it.

    The National Parks, by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns
    This is a behind-the-scenes look at the PBS special that celebrates Acadia, Denali, the Everglades and more national treasures, as well as a lavish visual history of the parks themselves. With the same democratic spirit as the TV series, this is a book for everyone.

    Paris in Color, by Nichole Robertson
    Bleu, rouge, vert, gris, noir! They’re all found in Paris. Take a colorful tour of artists’ favorite city. Organized by color, this book is sure to have you seeing even your own neighborhood with new eyes!

    Treasured Lands, by Q.T. Luong
    Having logged over 300 trips to the national parks, Luong is an expert on capturing their beauty and majesty. This collection of hundreds of photographs includes captions that explain his process and vision for protecting this magnificent land.

    This Land, by Jack Spencer
    Inspired by the attacks on September 11th, Spencer committed to creating a portrait of America. The project took him to churches, monuments, and the vast landscapes this country is known for. The resulting variety represents the diversity and wonder that is found here.

    Abandoned Places, by Kieron Connolly
    There’s something magnetic about images of ghost towns, rusty amusement parks, and abandoned hospitals. Both haunting and peaceful, they each tell a story, and Connolly’s more than 200 photographs are exceptional examples of the genre.

    Castles from the Air, by Giampiero Gianazza
    Often a favorite on any itinerary, castles represent our ability to create great things: community, architecture, and history. This book presents these ancient buildings with a fresh aerial perspective that will leave you eager to roam the real thing and admire their ingenuity and grace in person.

    Overview, by Benjamin Grant
    Using satellite images to make the astronaut perspective available to Earthbound armchair travelers, this collection of over 200 images reveals our planet in ways we’ve never seen before. Distant views of familiar buildings, landscapes, and more are sure to inspire you to see the world with new eyes, wherever you go.

    Bridges, by David Plowden
    Like a building or a monument, a bridge says something about the people who built it. This tour of American bridges celebrates the beauty, engineering, and spirit of collaboration they embody.

    12 Photographic Journeys: Iran in the 21st Century, by Anahita Ghabaian
    A variety of photographers come together to reveal the people of Iran, who live at the crossroads of traditional and modern life found in malls, cafes, mosques, and more. This is a thoughtful look at a beautiful country that is often misunderstood by outsiders.

    Passage to Israel, by Karen Lehrman
    Inspired by the land, light, and people of Israel, this book captures the deserts, cities, and spirit of this ancient place. Seen from the perspective of over 30 photographers, this collection will have you longing to see the country for yourself.

    London’s Waterfront, by Nicholas Waldemar Reed
    Some coffee-table books are sweeping in scope. Others reveal the intimate details of a hidden world. This book shines a light on a favorite section of London that’s so familiar, it’s easy to take it for granted. Instead learn the history of this area and study detailed drawings, so you’ll never pass by unaware again.

    Africa, by Sebastião Salgado
    With a photojournalist’s eye for truth, this collection of black-and-white photographs reveals the many people, places, animals, and truths that make up Africa. Text by African writer Mia Couto provides a perspective that foreigners must hear.

    The New Paris, by Lindsey Tramuta
    Of course, the traditions we know and love are alive and well in France. But Paris is also home to a vibrant, blossoming culture that welcomes new ideas, cultures, and people. Discover the new Paris with this warm collection of photographs and essays.

    The Japanese Garden, by Sophie Walker
    At over 300 pages, this book handles 800 years of Japanese gardening with the same deft elegance the masters bring to their gardens. Essays examine the meaning, technique, and care that is found in small and large landscapes that are expertly curated. Prepare to be inspired.

    Earth From Above, by Yann Arthus-Bertrand
    Created in partnership with UNESCO, this collection of aerial photographs is designed to evoke wonder and awe for our beautiful planet. And with over 200 images that present the Earth from a new, sometimes tender, other times grand, perspective, mission accomplished.

    The Hidden Himalayas, by Thomas L Kelly
    Travel where few Westerners have been before. The struggles, spirituality, and strength of the people of Humla are all on display in this evocative book that captures a hidden world that only the most intrepid travelers have seen.

    Spectacular Scotland, by James Gracie
    If you can tear yourself away from the Outlander series long enough to contemplate actually visiting Scotland, this book will have you longing to book a ticket straight away. The highlands, lochs, castles, glens, and villages are all captured here with Gracie’s sharp eye.

    New York, by Gabriela Kogan
    This is the New York that feels at once intimidating, inspiring, and utterly familiar all at once. It’s the New York you can only come to know by living in the city. And it’s here for admiring. Or not. New York doesn’t care. It’s just going to keep doing its thing, and Kogan will record it with her camera.

    59 Illustrated National Parks, by Nathan Anderson and Joel Anderson
    Designed in honor of the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, this book includes keepsake posters, historic photographs, maps, tips on making the most of a visit to the parks, and a look at the history of these special places that belong to all of us.

    India, by Eric Meole
    India is an epic country, and at nearly 300 pages, this book honors the variety, magic, and history of the country. Meole took nearly 25,000 photographs (and curated them ruthlessly) to capture this place that has inspired people for thousands of years, including the writers who have contributed poems, essays, and more for this book.

    The World’s Great Wonders, by Lonely Planet
    If you’ve ever wondered “How did they do that?” Or “What could cause that?”, read on in this expansive yet informative book that reveals the how and why behind famous sites like the Grand Canyon, Stonehenge, and even the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. Then impress your tour mates, or at least whoever you’re sharing the dinner table with.

    Ireland: A Luminous Beauty, by Peter Harbison and Leslie Conron Carola
    The stunning soft light of Ireland is at the center of this book. Everything from castle ruins to vast meadows appears nearly magical in this gorgeous glow. Prepare to sigh with pleasure.

    EarthArt, by Bernhard Edmaier
    Taking a cue from the color wheel, Edmaier has traveled around the world to capture the land from above in all its many hues. The natural beauty of Iceland, New Zealand, Chile, and more are proudly on full display, like a peacock unfolding his feathers.

    California the Beautiful, by Galen Rowell
    If you can’t afford a trip to the west coast, enjoy this road-trip-in-a-book that’s filled with sunsets, beaches, valleys, and that famous Sunshine State sparkle. Words by John Muir, Maya Angelou, Joan Didion and other luminaries add meaning to the experience.

    100 Places to Go Before They Disappear, by Co+Life
    If you don’t already feel excited to take a trip, perhaps a sense of urgency will push you to take action. Tragic but true, many of the world’s most beautiful and interesting places are sinking, being buried, or otherwise destroyed by human activity. Add the Great Barrier Reef, French vineyards, and of course, Venice to your list—quickly. The gorgeous photographs in this book will remind you why.

    Cairo Illustrated, by Michael Haag
    A unique mix of ancient and modern, sacred and commercial, gritty and beautiful, Cairo is a place that deserves a special spot, either abroad or on your bookshelf. This guide includes 150 dazzling photographs and informative introductions to mosques, markets, mosaics, and more.

    Steve McCurry: The Iconic Photographs, by Steve McCurry
    You may not know his name, but legendary photographer Steve McCurry’s images are unforgettable. Taken during his travels around the world, this collection reveals his unique vision of the human condition and what makes us, along with the world, so very beautiful.

    Great Houses of Havana, by Hermes Mallea
    With the travel ban lifted, it’s time to indulge in all things Cuba, including this gorgeous celebration of Havana architecture. Stately, colorful, and stylish, sugar plantations, mansions, and grand houses are on display here, as is a sophisticated look inside Cuba’s culture.

    My Nepenthe, by Romney Steele
    Even more compelling after the recent landslides in the area, this personal take on Big Sur and Nepenthe, the restaurant with the famous lookout, is one to savor. The recipes, family stories, and musings on what makes Big Sur so very special will transport you.

    Bhutan, by Matthieu Richard
    Richard has been invited into some of the world’s most isolated places. Here he reveals the color, courage, and creativity that are part of daily life in Bhutan, the land of the thunder dragon and national happiness.

    One Planet, by Lonely Planet
    You can almost hear Bob Marley singing “Let’s get together and feel alright,” as you flip through the pages of this book. It’s a beautiful gallery of images that makes a simple but important point: Wherever you go, we’re more similar than different.

    Spectacular China, by Nigel Cameron
    The best Chinese photographers have come together to show off their homeland with 180 colorful images, including many that unfold into panoramic posters. From ancient treasures to contemporary cities, you’ll never look at this country the same way again.

    Italy, by Ettore Pettinaroli
    Wander through the hills of Tuscany, the museums of Florence, and the canals of Venice in this stunning ode to Italy. With an insider’s knowledge, you can plan a Roman holiday or simply escape into the gorgeous vistas that Italy is beloved for.

    Tony Hillerman’s Landscape, by Anne Hillerman
    Author Tony Hillerman’s daughter has captured the New Mexico and Arizona deserts that play such a strong role in her father’s detective novels. With quotes from Tony, a history of the region, and insights into traditional Native American ceremonies, this book adds layers to his own writing and invites readers to venture beyond the page.

    Stone Offerings, by Mike Torrey
    Torrey’s admiration for Machu Picchu’s beauty and demanding nature, pour from the pages of this book. With a thoughtful history of the region, 120 photographs, and personal details that can only be learned by making the climb, armchair travelers will be inspired (perhaps simply to take an appreciative oxygen-rich breath, but still).

    Galapagos, by Tui De Roy
    Penguins, volcanos, iguanas, and more are all captured with De Roy’s compelling camera work, while her personal narration encourages urgent conservation. Like the island itself, this book never lacks for drama.

    The Summer Palace of the Romanovs, by Emmanuel Ducamp
    When you’re craving opulence, there’s nothing more glorious than living vicariously through the Romanovs. Step inside the Agate room, admire the gilded mirrors, hail the porcelain. Nothing is too fine for this palace, and Ducamp lavishes attention on every detail.

    The Most Scenic Drives in America, by Reader’s Digest Editors
    The American highways stretch from coast to coast, but it’s the backroads, winding detours, and secret exits that this book will guide you toward. With maps, seasonal advice, itineraries, and more, you’ll be ready to roll the windows down and take the long way home—or simply dream about it from the comfort of your chair!

    By the Sea, by Peter Guttman
    With the ocean as inspiration, Guttman travels to Maine’s granite coast, the floating markets of Southeast Asia, and even the North Pole. The result is a new understanding of the vital water that makes up more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface.

    Chic Stays, by Melinda Stevens
    Learn where celebrities like Kate Winslet prefer to stay as they introduce you to their favorite getaways. Hotels in Lisbon, Scotland, Sri Lanka, and more are featured here. Prepare to experience major room-service envy.

    What coffee table books would you recommend to armchair travelers?

    The post 50 Must-Have Coffee Table Books for the Armchair Traveler appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
  • Heidi Fiedler 3:00 pm on 2017/09/11 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , atlas obscura, , , , , , , , , , , , , , eric meole, ettore pettinaroli, , , , , ireland: a luminous beauty, , james gracie, joel anderson, , , , , , , , , , , , , paris in color, , , sebastiao salgado, , , , , , , , , , , the world’s great wonders, this land, , travel, , , , ,   

    50 Must-Have Coffee Table Books for the Armchair Traveler 

    For those who know exactly what they would do if they won the lottery (buy a gorgeous house, quit working, and travel the world!), this collection of books is a passport to colorful daydreams, exotic foods, and amazing experiences that can only be found far from home. But if your day job is still your job job, take a virtual trip via one of these classic photography books. You’re sure to return, if not rested, at least inspired.

    Atlas Obscura, by Joshua Foer, Ella Morton, and Dylan Thuras
    From the creators of the popular website comes a book with profiles of 700 of the strangest (and most interesting!) places on Earth. Covering everything from a pub inside a baobob tree to a bone museum in Italy, each entry is sure to disgust, intrigue, amuse, delight, or amaze you.

    Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travel, by Lonely Planet
    So many places and so little time to see them…so let the experts at Lonely Planet rank them for you. Never worry about whether you should see Budapest before Birmingham again!

    1000 Places to See Before You Die, by Patricia Schultz
    If for some reason you’ve run out of places to see, consult the ultimate checklist and get back out there. This guide will inspire budget travelers, thrill seekers, and cultural anthropologists alike.

    Humans of New York: Stories, by Brandon Stanton
    Profound, real, and empathetic, Stanton has a talent for turning interviews into heart-to-heart sessions that reveal just how similar we all are, whether we spend our days in New York City, abroad, or in our armchairs.

    Paris in Bloom, by Georgianna Lane
    Take the most beautiful city in the world and add flowers? Ooh la la! This gorgeous collection of photographs celebrates the flower markets, gardens, and other floral focal points of the city. Très belle!

    Wild Beautiful Places, by National Geographic
    Step into the National Geographic archives with this collection of vintage photographs that capture Nature at her best. Including interviews with the photographers, this book will inspire you to improve your own skills.

    Beaches, by Gray Malin
    Photographed by a favorite in the fashion industry, The Hamptons, Capri, the Amalfi Coast, and more are all on display in these masterful aerial shots that show off the easy breezy glam that is life at the beach.

    Drives of a Lifetime, by National Geographic
    Whether you’re flying solo or with someone you love, there’s nothing better than a road trip. As much a collection of gorgeous photographs as it is a travel planner, this book will guide you onto the open road with expert advice, solid maps, and the detours dreams are made of.

    Both Sides of Sunset, by Jane Brown and Marla Hamburg Kennedy
    Photographs from masters like Julian Schulman and Lee Friedlander come together to reveal the many layers of Los Angeles, a city that can be as sinful as it is sunny. This book is the next best thing to landing at LAX.

    Secret Journeys of a Lifetime, by National Geographic
    Top Ten lists, large photographs, maps, and informative sidebars make this a practical guide to deeper travel. With chapters titled “Spiritual Havens,” “Hidden Treasures,” and “The Road Less Travelled,” you’ll step into a world that is missed by many but never forgotten by those who discover it.

    The National Parks, by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns
    This is a behind-the-scenes look at the PBS special that celebrates Acadia, Denali, the Everglades and more national treasures, as well as a lavish visual history of the parks themselves. With the same democratic spirit as the TV series, this is a book for everyone.

    Paris in Color, by Nichole Robertson
    Bleu, rouge, vert, gris, noir! They’re all found in Paris. Take a colorful tour of artists’ favorite city. Organized by color, this book is sure to have you seeing even your own neighborhood with new eyes!

    Treasured Lands, by Q.T. Luong
    Having logged over 300 trips to the national parks, Luong is an expert on capturing their beauty and majesty. This collection of hundreds of photographs includes captions that explain his process and vision for protecting this magnificent land.

    This Land, by Jack Spencer
    Inspired by the attacks on September 11th, Spencer committed to creating a portrait of America. The project took him to churches, monuments, and the vast landscapes this country is known for. The resulting variety represents the diversity and wonder that is found here.

    Abandoned Places, by Kieron Connolly
    There’s something magnetic about images of ghost towns, rusty amusement parks, and abandoned hospitals. Both haunting and peaceful, they each tell a story, and Connolly’s more than 200 photographs are exceptional examples of the genre.

    Castles from the Air, by Giampiero Gianazza
    Often a favorite on any itinerary, castles represent our ability to create great things: community, architecture, and history. This book presents these ancient buildings with a fresh aerial perspective that will leave you eager to roam the real thing and admire their ingenuity and grace in person.

    Overview, by Benjamin Grant
    Using satellite images to make the astronaut perspective available to Earthbound armchair travelers, this collection of over 200 images reveals our planet in ways we’ve never seen before. Distant views of familiar buildings, landscapes, and more are sure to inspire you to see the world with new eyes, wherever you go.

    Bridges, by David Plowden
    Like a building or a monument, a bridge says something about the people who built it. This tour of American bridges celebrates the beauty, engineering, and spirit of collaboration they embody.

    12 Photographic Journeys: Iran in the 21st Century, by Anahita Ghabaian
    A variety of photographers come together to reveal the people of Iran, who live at the crossroads of traditional and modern life found in malls, cafes, mosques, and more. This is a thoughtful look at a beautiful country that is often misunderstood by outsiders.

    Passage to Israel, by Karen Lehrman
    Inspired by the land, light, and people of Israel, this book captures the deserts, cities, and spirit of this ancient place. Seen from the perspective of over 30 photographers, this collection will have you longing to see the country for yourself.

    London’s Waterfront, by Nicholas Waldemar Reed
    Some coffee-table books are sweeping in scope. Others reveal the intimate details of a hidden world. This book shines a light on a favorite section of London that’s so familiar, it’s easy to take it for granted. Instead learn the history of this area and study detailed drawings, so you’ll never pass by unaware again.

    Africa, by Sebastião Salgado
    With a photojournalist’s eye for truth, this collection of black-and-white photographs reveals the many people, places, animals, and truths that make up Africa. Text by African writer Mia Couto provides a perspective that foreigners must hear.

    The New Paris, by Lindsey Tramuta
    Of course, the traditions we know and love are alive and well in France. But Paris is also home to a vibrant, blossoming culture that welcomes new ideas, cultures, and people. Discover the new Paris with this warm collection of photographs and essays.

    The Japanese Garden, by Sophie Walker
    At over 300 pages, this book handles 800 years of Japanese gardening with the same deft elegance the masters bring to their gardens. Essays examine the meaning, technique, and care that is found in small and large landscapes that are expertly curated. Prepare to be inspired.

    Earth From Above, by Yann Arthus-Bertrand
    Created in partnership with UNESCO, this collection of aerial photographs is designed to evoke wonder and awe for our beautiful planet. And with over 200 images that present the Earth from a new, sometimes tender, other times grand, perspective, mission accomplished.

    The Hidden Himalayas, by Thomas L Kelly
    Travel where few Westerners have been before. The struggles, spirituality, and strength of the people of Humla are all on display in this evocative book that captures a hidden world that only the most intrepid travelers have seen.

    Spectacular Scotland, by James Gracie
    If you can tear yourself away from the Outlander series long enough to contemplate actually visiting Scotland, this book will have you longing to book a ticket straight away. The highlands, lochs, castles, glens, and villages are all captured here with Gracie’s sharp eye.

    New York, by Gabriela Kogan
    This is the New York that feels at once intimidating, inspiring, and utterly familiar all at once. It’s the New York you can only come to know by living in the city. And it’s here for admiring. Or not. New York doesn’t care. It’s just going to keep doing its thing, and Kogan will record it with her camera.

    59 Illustrated National Parks, by Nathan Anderson and Joel Anderson
    Designed in honor of the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, this book includes keepsake posters, historic photographs, maps, tips on making the most of a visit to the parks, and a look at the history of these special places that belong to all of us.

    India, by Eric Meole
    India is an epic country, and at nearly 300 pages, this book honors the variety, magic, and history of the country. Meole took nearly 25,000 photographs (and curated them ruthlessly) to capture this place that has inspired people for thousands of years, including the writers who have contributed poems, essays, and more for this book.

    The World’s Great Wonders, by Lonely Planet
    If you’ve ever wondered “How did they do that?” Or “What could cause that?”, read on in this expansive yet informative book that reveals the how and why behind famous sites like the Grand Canyon, Stonehenge, and even the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. Then impress your tour mates, or at least whoever you’re sharing the dinner table with.

    Ireland: A Luminous Beauty, by Peter Harbison and Leslie Conron Carola
    The stunning soft light of Ireland is at the center of this book. Everything from castle ruins to vast meadows appears nearly magical in this gorgeous glow. Prepare to sigh with pleasure.

    EarthArt, by Bernhard Edmaier
    Taking a cue from the color wheel, Edmaier has traveled around the world to capture the land from above in all its many hues. The natural beauty of Iceland, New Zealand, Chile, and more are proudly on full display, like a peacock unfolding his feathers.

    California the Beautiful, by Galen Rowell
    If you can’t afford a trip to the west coast, enjoy this road-trip-in-a-book that’s filled with sunsets, beaches, valleys, and that famous Sunshine State sparkle. Words by John Muir, Maya Angelou, Joan Didion and other luminaries add meaning to the experience.

    100 Places to Go Before They Disappear, by Co+Life
    If you don’t already feel excited to take a trip, perhaps a sense of urgency will push you to take action. Tragic but true, many of the world’s most beautiful and interesting places are sinking, being buried, or otherwise destroyed by human activity. Add the Great Barrier Reef, French vineyards, and of course, Venice to your list—quickly. The gorgeous photographs in this book will remind you why.

    Cairo Illustrated, by Michael Haag
    A unique mix of ancient and modern, sacred and commercial, gritty and beautiful, Cairo is a place that deserves a special spot, either abroad or on your bookshelf. This guide includes 150 dazzling photographs and informative introductions to mosques, markets, mosaics, and more.

    Steve McCurry: The Iconic Photographs, by Steve McCurry
    You may not know his name, but legendary photographer Steve McCurry’s images are unforgettable. Taken during his travels around the world, this collection reveals his unique vision of the human condition and what makes us, along with the world, so very beautiful.

    Great Houses of Havana, by Hermes Mallea
    With the travel ban lifted, it’s time to indulge in all things Cuba, including this gorgeous celebration of Havana architecture. Stately, colorful, and stylish, sugar plantations, mansions, and grand houses are on display here, as is a sophisticated look inside Cuba’s culture.

    My Nepenthe, by Romney Steele
    Even more compelling after the recent landslides in the area, this personal take on Big Sur and Nepenthe, the restaurant with the famous lookout, is one to savor. The recipes, family stories, and musings on what makes Big Sur so very special will transport you.

    Bhutan, by Matthieu Richard
    Richard has been invited into some of the world’s most isolated places. Here he reveals the color, courage, and creativity that are part of daily life in Bhutan, the land of the thunder dragon and national happiness.

    One Planet, by Lonely Planet
    You can almost hear Bob Marley singing “Let’s get together and feel alright,” as you flip through the pages of this book. It’s a beautiful gallery of images that makes a simple but important point: Wherever you go, we’re more similar than different.

    Spectacular China, by Nigel Cameron
    The best Chinese photographers have come together to show off their homeland with 180 colorful images, including many that unfold into panoramic posters. From ancient treasures to contemporary cities, you’ll never look at this country the same way again.

    Italy, by Ettore Pettinaroli
    Wander through the hills of Tuscany, the museums of Florence, and the canals of Venice in this stunning ode to Italy. With an insider’s knowledge, you can plan a Roman holiday or simply escape into the gorgeous vistas that Italy is beloved for.

    Tony Hillerman’s Landscape, by Anne Hillerman
    Author Tony Hillerman’s daughter has captured the New Mexico and Arizona deserts that play such a strong role in her father’s detective novels. With quotes from Tony, a history of the region, and insights into traditional Native American ceremonies, this book adds layers to his own writing and invites readers to venture beyond the page.

    Stone Offerings, by Mike Torrey
    Torrey’s admiration for Machu Picchu’s beauty and demanding nature, pour from the pages of this book. With a thoughtful history of the region, 120 photographs, and personal details that can only be learned by making the climb, armchair travelers will be inspired (perhaps simply to take an appreciative oxygen-rich breath, but still).

    Galapagos, by Tui De Roy
    Penguins, volcanos, iguanas, and more are all captured with De Roy’s compelling camera work, while her personal narration encourages urgent conservation. Like the island itself, this book never lacks for drama.

    The Summer Palace of the Romanovs, by Emmanuel Ducamp
    When you’re craving opulence, there’s nothing more glorious than living vicariously through the Romanovs. Step inside the Agate room, admire the gilded mirrors, hail the porcelain. Nothing is too fine for this palace, and Ducamp lavishes attention on every detail.

    The Most Scenic Drives in America, by Reader’s Digest Editors
    The American highways stretch from coast to coast, but it’s the backroads, winding detours, and secret exits that this book will guide you toward. With maps, seasonal advice, itineraries, and more, you’ll be ready to roll the windows down and take the long way home—or simply dream about it from the comfort of your chair!

    By the Sea, by Peter Guttman
    With the ocean as inspiration, Guttman travels to Maine’s granite coast, the floating markets of Southeast Asia, and even the North Pole. The result is a new understanding of the vital water that makes up more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface.

    Chic Stays, by Melinda Stevens
    Learn where celebrities like Kate Winslet prefer to stay as they introduce you to their favorite getaways. Hotels in Lisbon, Scotland, Sri Lanka, and more are featured here. Prepare to experience major room-service envy.

    What coffee table books would you recommend to armchair travelers?

    The post 50 Must-Have Coffee Table Books for the Armchair Traveler appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
  • Jenny Kawecki 3:00 pm on 2016/08/08 Permalink
    Tags: , short stack, slim reads, , travel   

    The Perfect Slim Reads to Pack in Your Carry On 

    Like any proper book nerd, I love a good, fat tomethey’re great for hefting around, filling bookshelves, and proving your status as a Serious Reader. But with travel (especially quick summer trips) comes the need to pack light. Here a few reads that are perfect for slipping into your carry on (or your purse, if you’re sick of toting around your weight in paperback):

    The Lover’s Dictionary, by David Levithan
    Told in a series of dictionary entries, The Lover’s Dictionary explores a relationship and the completely indescribable love it contains. Short, aching, funny, and bittersweet, this novel leaves plenty of blank space for you to fill in on your own. Especially since the entries appear in alphabetical rather than chronological order (like any good dictionary should), allowing you to piece together the plot. It’s honest and exactly as long as it needs to be, and, well, we can’t promise you won’t cry all over your seatmate.

    Gourmet Rhapsody, by Muriel Barbary
    Did you love The Elegance of the Hedgehog? Then you’ll love this prequel novella, which takes place in the same Parisian apartment building as Barbary’s longer novel. Food critic Pierre Athens is dying, and before he goes, he’s determined to re-experience one last perfect taste; he just has to remember what it was. His mental search takes him through his memories of people, places, andmost importantlyfoods. Meanwhile, his wife, children, and pet cat surround his deathbed, waiting for his final moment. Just the right size and weight to bring along, you can’t help but enjoy this setup for the adventures of Renée and Paloma.

    The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman
    If you like them short and enchantingly creepy, then this is the story for you. As the narrator returns to his childhood home, he begins to remember some long-suppressed events of the pastincluding his strange friendship with a girl named Lettie Hempstock, a violent battle with an evil nanny, and an impossible ocean at (you guessed it) the end of the lane. This fairy tale will sneak up on you, full of forgotten memories and gorgeous descriptions, and perfect for bringing along on a beach vacation and reading with your toes in the sand.

    We Have Always Lived in the Castle, by Shirley Jackson
    Plenty of classics are long and heavy, but not Shirley Jackson’s We Have Always Lived in the Castle. Mary Katherine Blackwood, or Merricat, lives with her older sister Constance and her ailing uncle in an old house on a lonely manor. The villagers below have never been fond of the Blackwood family, but ever since the rest of Merricat and Constance’s family mysteriously died of arsenic poisoning years ago, they’ve stayed even more out of the waywhich is just the way Merricat likes it. But when their cousin Charles comes for a visit, things start to change, and Merricat and Constance may have to deal with some long-kept secrets.

    Northanger Abbey, by Jane Austen
    Northanger Abbey is the shortest of Austen’s novelsand, if you ask me, the funniest. Seventeen-year-old Catherine Morland has read one too many Gothic novels, so when she goes on a trip with some family friends and meets Eleanor and Henry Tilney, whose mother died under secret circumstances, her imagination gets the best of her. With 140 pages of adventures in a spooky old mansion, an angry father, thwarted marriage plans, and a heroine who’s “almost pretty,” you’ll speed through this classic read in no time.

    What are your favorite slim reads to pack for a plane trip?

     
  • Tara Sonin 4:00 pm on 2016/08/02 Permalink
    Tags: , see the world, travel   

    5 Sexy Novels to Unleash Your Wanderlust 

    The summer  is a time for travel—or travel envy, depending on whether your wallet can accommodate. If you can’t go ‘round the world in 80 days, here are 5 romantic novels that you can budget for instead!

    Interview with a Vampire, by Anne Rice
    New Orleans, Eastern Europe, Paris…sounds like a whirlwind trip, especially if you’re immortal. If you’re like me and watched the movie adaptation of Anne Rice’s gothic novel detailing the saga of Louis and Lestat (and Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise), then there’s no time like the present to pick up the moody, evocative, and lushly descriptive novel. Louis is living on a New Orleans plantation in 1791 when he meets Lestat, a vampire who turns him, hoping for a lifelong companion. But tensions arise between them because Lestat feeds on humans, while Louis attempts to deny his nature. What begins as a journey of them traveling the world together becomes a story of Louis traveling alone, trying to reconcile his morals with his immortality.

    The Golem + the Jinniby Helene Wecker
    Another historical fiction novel, this time spanning the time and space between the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and New York City. Chava is a golem, created by a Rabbi with nefarious goals who dies while transporting her from Poland to the city. Ahmad is a jinni from Syria, released from a lamp to run wild in New York in 1899—while still not being entirely free. These two mythical beings meet and an undeniable—and potentially dangerous—connection between them forms.

    Safe Havenby Nicholas Sparks
    Safe Haven takes us to North Carolina, and in true Nicholas Sparks form, the romance is just as visible in his descriptions of the place as they are in the relationships that bloom. Katie comes to Southport, North Caroline, determined not to form personal relationships, protecting a secret from her past. But when she meets Alex, a widower with two kids, she can’t help but find her heart opening to him.

    Mine Till Midnight, by Lisa Kleypas
    We continue our travels in London high society with a Lisa Kleypas historical romance. Amelia Hathaway is 26, which according to The Laws Created By Men, makes her a spinster. But it’s all well and good, since she doesn’t want to get married anyway, since her life is too full of obligations, like taking care of her family after her brother lost his wife. Then she meets Cam, a Romani and Irish rogue—who, despite wanting to abandon society’s expectations, finds himself falling for Amelia. This one will not only make you want to travel, but travel back in time!

    Eat Pray Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert
    Possibly the most quintessential travel romance of the modern age, Eat Pray Love isn’t just a book about finding love in unexpected places (like Bali!) but also about learning to love yourself. When her marriage crumbles, Elizabeth Gilbert takes off on an epic journey of eating her way through Italy, praying her way through India, and learning to love the journey life takes you on when you’re least expecting it.

     
  • Jeff Somers 3:00 pm on 2016/06/23 Permalink
    Tags: , , travel, , travel destinations,   

    10 Awesome Summer Vacation Destinations Inspired by Books 

    This post is sponsored by Rosetta Stone.

    Studies have shown Americans take less vacation than just about any other country on the planet. Far from lazy, we Americans work way too hard, and studies have shown there’s a severe psychological cost to not taking enough time away from our stressful jobs. Books have always offered an imperfect solution—a “vacation for the mind”—but sometimes books can go on to inspire a real flesh-and-blood vacation, when you read a great story set in an exotic locale that makes your heart beat a little faster with the excitement of actually going there. Whether it’s to trace the fictional steps of a character through a city, or to see with your own eyes the dazzling sights the author describes, here are ten books that will inspire you to book some plane tickets and pack your most comfortable pants.

    A Fine Balance, by Robinton Mistry
    Location: Mumbai, India
    Mumbai is a sprawling, beautiful, tragic city of nearly 19 million people, an economic and cultural engine for India as a whole. It’s also a city battling endemic poverty while boasting the country’s highest saturation of billionaires. Mistry never actually names Mumbai in the book, but it’s clearly the setting for his story about four Mumbaikar who are drawn together by the tumultuous events of India’s mid-1970s Emergency period. His beautifully detailed descriptions will make you experience every crowded train, every soaring skyscraper, and every pungent scent—leaving you with the burning desire to go and see this incredible city for yourself.

    The Lost Continent, by Bill Bryson
    Location: Small-town America
    Bill Bryson’s easygoing humor is sharp and smart, and his travel books are always effective at inspiring new vacation plans. After living in England for more than a decade, Bryson returned to America after the death of his father and wrote his first travel book after being inspired to take a road trip of nearly 14,000 miles through the country’s small towns, avoiding tourist areas and seeking out less-traveled areas. The end result is a humorous book that will have you tuning up the car to replicate this ultimate road trip through the hidden treasures of your own country.

    Snow Country, by Yasunari Kawabata
    Location: Japan
    This novel won the 1968 Nobel Prize for Literature, and describes a region of Japan many Westerners aren’t aware of, an area in the West where climactic conditions bring incredible amounts of snow every year—enough to cut towns off from the rest of the country. Many people think Japan is Tokyo, crowded and urban, but reading this book brings home the silence, isolation, and incredible beauty of this desolate area, and should inspire anyone who reads it to book a trip to discover a region of the world that is as lonely as it is beautiful.

    Ulysses, by James Joyce
    Location: Dublin
    It’s rare to have the opportunity to literally follow in the footsteps of a fictional character, but James Joyce rendered his beloved Dublin so thoroughly in his complex, maddening classic novel that you can in fact trace Leopold Bloom’s path through the city, and you can even matchsome of his surprisingly clear-eyed descriptions of key buildings with structures that are still standing today. Bloomsday comes around every June 16, so you can start planning your 2017 walking tour of Dublin early.

    Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie
    Location: Europe in Luxury
    Not so much a destination as a way of travel, the Orient Express was once a luxurious and languorous way to travel from London to Athens, Istanbul, Vienna, and a dozen other destinations that were often difficult or dangerous to get to otherwise. The trains that made up the original Express became shorthand for luxury, and reading Christie’s novel gives a glimpse of what it’s like to take your time and enjoy yourself while en route somewhere, as opposed to dealing with your tray table and the screaming kid sitting behind you. Assuming, of course, that no one is murdered while you’re traveling.

    My Brilliant Friend, by Elena Ferrante
    Location: Naples, Italy
    Ferrante is quickly approaching cult status across the globe as her Neapolitan Novels set in and around Naples, Italy, grow in popularity. Ferrante’s characters hail from a particular neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples, and the politics, culture, and limitations of life in that small spot are the engine that drive her stories’ conflicts. The richness of life and the humming electricity Ferrante imbues Naples with make anyone reading the books want to go and find a room just to be a fly on the wall for a while.

    The Luminaries, by Eleanor Catton
    Location: New Zealand
    Although set more than a century in the past, Catton’s descriptions of New Zealand and the tiny town of Hokitika (pop: 876 circa 2006) are lush with natural beauty and a harsh, unforgiving climate. New Zealand is, of course, an incredibly beautiful spot—if you need proof, just go rewatch the Lord of the Rings films. Catton’s haunting descriptions will have you booking your 20-hour flight immediately.

    The Light Between Oceans, by M.L. Stedman
    Location: Australia and Loneliness
    Janus Rock, the isolated island lighthouse where Tom and Isabel Sherbourne live in Stedman’s amazing, lyrical novel, doesn’t actually exist. But it might have been inspired by a number of isolated lighthouses on islands off the coast of Australia—notably Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, which is spectacularly beautiful. Stedman’s dense descriptions of the beauty of the Sherbournes’ surroundings will no doubt have you Googling lighthouses around the world for the sort of trip that could heal souls.

    The Two Faces of January, by Patricia Highsmith
    Location: Athens, Greece
    Patricia Highsmith’s view of traveling through Europe and the Balkans may be a bit dated, and her stories invariably focus on murder, blackmail, and other less-than-savory aspects of human behavior, but this 1964 novel captures the allure of Greece despite some shady goings-on (which, yes, include blackmail and murder), and reading it makes you feel like you, too, could simply show up one day, book a room, and wander around Athens soaking in the intense history and local beauty.

    Various Books
    Location: The Solar System
    This is the 21st century, after all. Why not daydream about booking the next flight to Mars, so you can experience the silent, freezing isolation of Mark Watney? Or a trip to the moon, where you can imagine the Loonies plotting sedition? Or a warm welcome on Venus? Or sky-diving more or less infinitely to your death on Jupiter? Travel technology may not allow you to hit these destinations today, but it never hurts to dream.

    Summer is here, people. The time to make your vacation plans is now. Grab a book for inspiration and start booking rooms.

     
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