Jenna’s Gift Guide: Coffee Table Books

November 20, 2018 by Jenna | Books

I absolutely love coffee table books and I can’t wait until the day I get my own place so that I have an excuse to amass even more coffee table books. Because I’ve been deep into holiday gift shopping lately, I wanted to share some of my recommendations for coffee table books that I think is perfect for any bookworm or non-bookworm.

What I love most about these kinds of books is that they’re usually a quick read and you can flip through them over and over again without getting bored. I’ve chosen a few books with minimal text so that they can be devoured quickly and repeatedly for those who prefer to just look at pictures, and also a few with slightly more text for those who may want a deeper read. I’ve also included two of my favourite graphic novels of all time, simply because I think they are perfect for someone of any age and will look beautiful no matter where they are displayed.

The Kinfolk Home by Nathan Williams

Some of you may be familiar with Kinfolk magazine, which focuses on home, work, culture, and style. The founder of Kinfolk, Nathan Williams, has released a few books including The Kinfolk Home, The Kinfolk Table, and The Kinfolk Entrepreneur. I’ve chosen The Kinfolk Home because I love looking through interior design books (a love fostered quite early in life by my dad) and seeing how other people live. The Kinfolk Home is all about slow living and devoting our time to whatever brings us joy and meaning, and I really enjoyed being about to take a peek into other people’s homes and how the principles of key living and their deepest values are embodied in the design of their home.

The Kinfolk Home includes some beautiful pictures of interiors and exteriors, as well as in-depth bios of the people who own these beautiful homes. It is a wonderful gift for anyone who loves interior design or someone who is looking for inspiration for their own home.

Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld

World Atlas of Tea by Krisi Smith

This book is perfect for any lover of tea. It covers an extensive amount of information including a short history of tea, how best to brew tea, different types of tools, and teas from around the world. It is the perfect book to keep on your coffee table and flick through every now and then to gain a little bit more knowledge about tea.

Another book about tea that I discovered and would recommend is The Book of Tea by Louise Cheadle and Nick Kilby from teapigs. I have to admit that I was very close to taking this book home with me but all of the copies in the bookstore had smudges and imperfections on them and my book collector heart couldn’t take it. The Book of Tea has a bit more of a modern style in its design and might be suitable for someone who would enjoy creative illustrations and infographics.

Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld

Cat Paws by Pie International

Any cat person would be absolutely stoked to receive a copy of Cat Paws. It is soooo adorable and each page is filled with a picture of a cat’s paws. There are bios and instagram handles for all of the featured cats and I was in cat lady heaven for a full day after coming across this book. The publisher has also compiled a book of Cat’s Feet and Cat Whisker Pads but I believe these two are only published in Japanese.

For dog lovers, I would recommend The Dog in Photography: 1839 – Today by Raymond Merritt and Miles Barth. I don’t personally own a copy but I have flicked through it multiple times in store. The book itself is beautiful and the photography is absolutely divine!

Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld

Lost in Translation & Speaking in Tongues by Ella Frances Sanders

These two books by Ella Frances Sanders are great gifts for both children and adults. Lost in Translation includes a list of untranslatable words from around the world like ‘commuovere’, an Italian word meaning ‘to be moved in a heartwarming way, usually relating to a story that moved you to tears’. It is accompanied by beautiful illustrations and explanations of these not quite translatable words. Speaking in Tongues is equally interesting and contains 50 curious expressions from around the globe like ‘nosom para oblake’, a Serbian expression that literally translates to ‘he’s ripping clouds with his nose’ (this means that he is conceited and vain). These would be amazing gifts for anyone who wants to learn a little more about languages around the world and their nuances.

Lost in Translation: Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld
Speaking in Tongues: Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld

New York: Through a Fashion Eye by Megan Hess

I’m sure that Megan Hess probably isn’t new to you but I felt compelled to include a fashion coffee table book in this list and I think any one of Megan Hess’s books would make a beautiful gift. Not only are the illustrations inside incredibly beautiful, but the entire book is beautifully presented. There is foiling on the cover and foiled sprayed edges. It would be the perfect, eye-catching book on their coffee table or bookshelf. Megan Hess also has other beautiful books like Paris: Through a Fashion Eye, Coco Chanel: The Illustrated World of a Fashion Icon, and many others!

Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld

The Encyclopedia of Early Earth & One Hundred Nights of Hero by Isabel Greenberg

These have been my two favourite graphic novels for years. Not only is the art style unique and interesting but the stories in these books are timeless and quietly feminist, with lots of mythology incorporated. These books have a storytelling aspect to them where stories are passed among people by word of mouth. Each book contains shorter stories that all interweave together into a larger, overarching story and I really enjoyed this aspect of it. It is a wonderful choice for those who may want to read it in one sitting and for those who are more inclined to read it in small chunks over a longer period of time.

The Encyclopedia of Early Earth: Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld
One Hundred Nights of Hero: Amazon | Book Depository | Angus & Robertson Bookworld

I hope you enjoyed this gift guide and have found some inspiration for your holiday gift shopping this year (whether it is for someone else or for yourself!). I would love to hear any of your recommendations for coffee table books because I am always on the hunt for something new and beautiful.

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Jenna is an Aussie blogger and reader who loves to indulge in great books and great food. She is a doctor (of philosophy) and can usually be found fangirling about something, devouring delicious food, or taking a nap. You can find her on Twitter @readwithjenna and on Instagram @readingwithjenna.


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