Books for Gifting 2017

From the publisher: "This incredibly wide-ranging collection of maps - all inspired by literary classics - offers readers a new way of looking at their favorite fictional worlds. Andrew DeGraff's stunningly detailed artwork takes readers deep into the landscapes from The Odyssey, Hamlet, Pride and Prejudice, Invisible Man, A Wrinkle in Time, Watership Down, A Christmas Carol, and more. Sure to reignite a love for old favorites and spark fresh interest in more recent works as well, Plotted provides a unique new way of appreciating the lands of the human imagination."
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The publisher calls Chris Harris the 21st-century Shel Silverstein. "Already lauded by critics as a worthy heir to such greats as Silverstein, Seuss, Nash and Lear, Harris's hilarious debut molds wit and wordplay, nonsense and oxymoron, and visual and verbal sleight-of-hand in masterful ways that make you look at the world in a whole new wonderfully upside-down way. Adding to the fun: Lane Smith has spectacularly illustrated this extraordinary collection with nearly one hundred pieces of appropriately absurd art." Judith Viorst, bestselling author of Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day says, "Ridiculous, nonsensical, peculiar, outrageous, possibly deranged--and utterly, totally, absolutely delicious. Read it! Immediately!"
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From the publisher: "After steaming out of New York City on December 1, 1917, laden with a staggering three thousand tons of TNT and other explosives, the munitions ship Mont-Blanc fought its way up the Atlantic coast, through waters prowled by enemy U-boats. As it approached the lively port city of Halifax, Mont-Blanc's deadly cargo erupted with the force of 2.9 kilotons of TNT—the most powerful explosion ever visited on a human population, save for HIroshima and Nagasaki. Mont-Blanc was vaporized in one fifteenth of a second; a shockwave leveled the surrounding city. Next came a thirty-five-foot tsunami. Most astounding of all, however, were the incredible tales of survival and heroism that soon emerged from the rubble."
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From the publisher: "Dar Williams has made her career not in stadiums, but touring America's small towns. She has played their venues, composed in their coffee shops, and drunk in their bars. She has seen these communities struggle, but also seen them thrive in the face of postindustrial identity crises. Here, Williams muses on why some towns flourish while others fail, examining elements from the significance of history and nature to the uniting power of public spaces and food. Drawing on her own travels and the work of urban theorists, Williams offers real solutions to rebuild declining communities. What I Found in a Thousand Towns is more than a love letter to America's small towns, it's a deeply personal and hopeful message about the potential of America's lively and resilient communities."
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From the publisher: "The Library of Congress brings booklovers an enriching tribute to the power of the written word and to the history of our most beloved books. Featuring more than 200 full-color images of original catalog cards, first edition book covers, and photographs from the library's magnificent archives, this collection is a visual celebration of the rarely seen treasures in one of the world's most famous libraries and the brilliant catalog system that has kept it organized for hundreds of years. Packed with engaging facts on literary classics—from Ulysses to The Cat in the Hat to Shakespeare's First Folio to The Catcher in the Rye—this package is an ode to the enduring magic and importance of books."
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From the publisher: "For native Brooklynite Roz Chast, adjusting to life in the suburbs (where people own trees!?) was surreal. But she recognized that for her kids, the reverse was true. On trips into town, they would marvel at the strange world of Manhattan: its gum-wad-dotted sidewalks, honey-combed streets, and "those West Side Story-things" (fire escapes). Their wonder inspired Going into Town, part playful guide, part New York stories, and part love letter to the city, told through Chast's laugh-out-loud, touching, and true cartoons. From the #1 NYT bestselling author of Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?, Roz Chast's new graphic memoir--a hilarious illustrated ode/guide/thank-you note to Manhattan as only she could write it."
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In the Little People, Big Dreams series, discover the lives of outstanding people from designers and artists to scientists. All of them went on to achieve incredible things, yet all of them began life as a little child with a dream.
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My introduction to Deb Perelman of the fantabulous food blog smittenkitchen.com wasn't via the usual route: I found out she was speaking at my local library, a friend told me I should go, I took her advice and found Deb and warm and funny and smart, and only then did I look up her website and her first cookbook, the excellent The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. I love them both, and was so excited when I found out about Smitten Kitchen Every Day. This follow-up contains more than a hundred real recipes for real people, gorgeously illustrated.
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