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Holiday Gift Guide 2014

December 15, 2014

Last-minute shopping? I can’t say this is a gift guide for everyone, but every year I offer up a little list of things I think are cool. Most are books. I can’t lay claim to all of these being recent, but they are to my taste.

Without further ado:

Alfred Stieglitz: Camera Work

This brings together highlights from the entire run of Stieglitz’s legendary magazine Camera Work, one of the first North American periodicals to feature photography in any way.
http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/alfred-stieglitz-camera-work/9783836544078-item.html

Was Superman A Spy?: And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/was-superman-a-spy-and/9780452295322-item.html

Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent?: And Other Amazing Comic Book Trivia!

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/why-does-batman-carry-shark/9780452297845-item.html

Brian Cronin writes a regular blog on why comics developed the way they did, and both these books expand heavily on the same theme. These are a comic trivia-lovers dream.

Star Wars Costumes by Brandon Alinger

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/star-wars-costumes/9781452138053-item.html
A coffee-table sized portfolio of the original trilogy’s costumes, in their full glory.

Geek-Art: An Anthology: Art, Design, Illustration & Pop Culture by Thomas Olivri

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/geek-art-an-anthology-art/9781452140483-item.html
Another oversized-tome of creators re-interpreting geek culture in many different forms.

A Philosophy Of Walking by Frederic Gros

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/a-philosophy-of-walking/9781781688373-item.html
I haven’t read this yet, but I’m an avid walker, and the book jacket blurb is enticing.

Radio Benjamin by Walter Benjamin

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/radio-benjamin/9781781685754-item.html
We’ve had a flood of newly-translated Benjamin over the last 2 decades, and this is a transcript of his radio work in Germany.

Belonging: The Paradox of Citizenship by Adrienne Clarkson

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/belonging-the-paradox-of-citizenship/9781770898370-item.html
The latest Massey Lecture by one of our more distinguished former Governor-Generals of Canada. I’m half-way through this, and like all Massey’s, it doesn’t disappoint.

Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free: Laws For The Internet Age by Cory Doctorow

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/information-doesnt-want-to-be/9781940450285-item.html
I will say up-front that I’m not a fan of Doctorow. I doubt I’ll agree with very much in this book, but he at least is sane and hasn’t drunk the dot-com kool-aid like many others who weigh in on copyright and new economic models.

Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a F*ck

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/thug-kitchen-eat-like-you/9781770894655-item.html
Probably the most entertaining food blog currently in existence. Healthy food with attitude.

Cool Beer Labels: The Best Art & Design From Breweries Around The World by Daniel Bellon, Steven Speeg

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/cool-beer-labels-the-best/9781440335204-item.html
A wonderful picture book of craft and small brewery labels from around the world. Great design, and great beer.

Camera Crazy by Buzz Poole, Christopher D. Salyers

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/camera-crazy/9783791349558-item.html
A fun book of toy cameras, old and new. Quite a few of these are used by professionals daily.

The Sakai Project: Artists Celebrate Thirty Years of Usagi Yojimbo

https://www.darkhorse.com/Books/26-371/The-Sakai-Project-Artists-Celebrate-Thirty-Years-of-Usagi-Yojimbo-HC
This is a beautiful hardcover from Dark Horse featuring artists from around the world interpreting Stan Sakai’s rabbit ronin. Usagi Yojimbo has consistently been a high-quality comic for the last 30 years, and proceeds from the book will help defray medical costs of the Sakai family.

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