HIDE & SEEK: CABINS & HIDE OUTS

A beautiful book that will make for a great gift, or inspire you to find your own little hide out somewhere far away. “Our longing for simplicity, clarity, and relaxation often leads us into nature. Hide and Seek showcases the most beautiful places for satisfying this longing.” $40, available on Amazon.


AMERICA IN SPACE

Spotted at the beautiful Cole Haan flagship store in Rockefeller Center, America in Space: Nasa’s First 50 Years. “The story of America’s space age is told with more than 400 carefully selected images. The story begins in the 1950s with intrepid test pilots venturing ever faster and higher, and opens out into the now-legendary Mercury and Apollo missions of the 1960s that made astronauts into national heroes.” $38, available at Barnes & Noble.


SUMMER READING: EIGER DREAMS

 

 

“Eiger Dreams” by John Krakauer is pretty much the opposite of light summer reading. Yes, you’ll fly through the book, but it will keep you on the edge of your hammock. The book features a collection of 12 harrowing mountain adventures spanning the globe, from K2 to Mt. McKinley, and covers everything from the snooty climbing culture of Chamonix, to rough and tumble bush pilots in Alaska. As Publishers Weekly notes “Armchair adventurers can’t ask for better entertainment than this tour of the legendary locations of mountaineering and the eccentric climbers who gather there.”

 

 

Best known for “The Perfect Storm” and “Into the Wild,” two hugely successful books that were made into movies, Krakauer’s other titles deserve as much attention,  including “Into Thin Air” and “Under the Banner of Heaven.” Eiger Dreams, $13, available on Amazon.


Shown above, the Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla, Nepal. Airstrips are steeply graded to accommodate shorter lengths and thinner air.

 

 

THE MODERN LIBRARY

 

It goes without saying that small retail shops benefit greatly from mixing in a well curated selection of books amongst their clothing and accessories. It’s a smart and effective way of denoting a lifestyle, communicating a point of view without posting a mission statement on a wall akin to the opening of a museum exhibit. As an example, take a look at this impressive collection from Shinola in Detroit – you could easily drop a few thousand dollars on books, before even getting to their stunning bicycles. And take note, the modern library isn’t reserved for retail – any office, hotel lobby, airline club, and certainly home space looks and feels more interesting with stacks of beautiful books. Here are 7 favorites from the shop, including this image taken from “A Sporting Life.”

 

 

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TARTAN: ROMANCING THE PLAID

A lovely book, “Tartan: Romancing the Plaid” by Jeffrey Banks, covers the proud lineage of this timeless fabric, from kilts and scarves to ties and even haute couture. “William “Braveheart” Wallace did battle in it. Queen Victoria decked Balmoral in it. Madonna donned it to strut around the stage. Tartan, the beloved symbol of kin, clan and nation to the Scots, has evolved into the one of the world’s favorite fabrics.” $350 new, $75 used, available at Amazon.

 

WHERE CHEFS EAT

“Where Chefs Eat” from Phaidon. A new, 704 page international restaurant guide for bargain noodle joints to high-end restaurants, recommended by over 400 of the world’s top chefs. $20, available at Stag.

THE GRILLING BOOK

 

You should add this new book from Bon Appétit to the top of your summer wish list, right alongside that new pair of shades, flip flops and retro bicycle. Notice it simply says “Book” and not “Cookbook.” It might shed light on the approach by talented Editor in Chief Adam Rapoport, formerly the Style Director at GQ – that having skills in the kitchen, and behind a grill, are not narrow genres reserved for ‘foodies,’ but essential knowledge for men. Packed with over 350 tasty recipes, first-rate cocktails and tips on entertaining, it’s a (more…)

THE ORIGINAL: HUDSON’S BAY COMPANY

 

 

As February’s fashion shows proved, the obsession with history and heritage in menswear remains strong, with the unfortunate side effect that many of the collections were hard to tell apart. You could have saved time and just lined up four or five and had them go directly one after the other. Professorial tweeds, preppy stripes, layers upon layers upon layers – has menswear become repetitive?

 

If there was a quest to find true authenticity, Hudson’s Bay Company, the oldest commercial corporation in North America, and one of the (more…)

THE WORLD ATLAS OF BEER

Spotted at Barnes & Noble this past weekend, “The World Atlas of Beer,” a beautifully designed mix of illustrations, maps and stunning photography. Perfect for the beer connoisseur in the family. $15, available at Barnes & Noble. A look inside: (more…)

WORLD WAR Z

The chilling new trailer for “World War Z” debuted last night during the Super Bowl and caused a lot of people to put the chicken wings down for a minute. Scheduled to release on June 21st, the highly anticipated movie stars Brad Pitt and is an adaptation of the cult-favorite Max Brooks novel, World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War. I’m not a zombie fan by any means, but went out and bought the book and read it in a few weeks after seeing the first trailer. It’s an incredibly entertaining read, and haunting. “Probably the most topical and literate scare since Orson Welles’s War of the Worlds radio broadcast.” – The Dallas Morning News. $10, available at Amazon.

 

LIVING IN A MODERN WAY: CALIFORNIA DESIGN 1930-1965

Spotted at the Portland Museum of Art, “Living in a Modern Way: California Design 1930-1965.”  In 1951, designer Greta Magnusson Grossman observed that California design was “not a superimposed style, but an answer to present conditions…. It has developed out of our own preferences for living in a modern way.” California design influenced the material culture of the entire country, in everything from architecture to fashion. This generously illustrated book is the first comprehensive examination of California’s mid-century modern design. $50, available at Barnes & Noble.

TODD EBERLE: EMPIRE OF SPACE

Years ago while working for Prada I helped launch the opening of the LA flagship designed by architect Rem Koolhaas. In preparation for the unveiling, we hired photographer Todd Eberle to document the space. Watching him work was inspiring – his meticulous attention to detail, unique approach, and methodical pace were quite unique, as if a painter had set up an easel for a long day of interpretation. The results were incomparable and Todd is a true artist, one of the very few who could capture the vision of Miuccia Prada. So naturally his book, “Empire of Space,” deserved a spot on my book shelf, and you should consider it to. (more…)

GREAT HOUSES OF HAVANA

Spotted at the IWC flagship store on Madison Avenue, amongst an incredibly vast collection of books celebrating luxury, “Great Houses of Havana” by Hermes Mallea. From the publishers: “Great Houses of Havana celebrates one hundred years of creativity, design, and style that made the city “the Paris of the Caribbean.” For four hundred years, Havana was the center of Spanish trade in the western hemisphere. With the expansion of the sugar industry, independence from Spain, and North American investment, Havana became a city of great wealth, great style, and great houses in a (more…)

KENYA BY MICHAEL POLIZA

This beautiful book is perfect for the gentleman adventurer. Spotted at the small vintage shop Kent Home in Chappaqua, New York: “Kenya” – a stunning collection of photographs by Michael Poliza. “Poliza conveys the adventure and excitement of the unique locations he has chosen to explore, and as with all his best-selling titles, Poliza’s concern for fragile eco-systems and vibrant cultures is reflected on every page. A skilled artist and gifted storyteller, Poliza’s one-of-a-kind work combines advanced technique and original composition. Each breathtaking photograph is beautifully printed on luxurious paper and stands on its own as an expressive work of art.” $67, available at Amazon, or better yet visit Kent Home, 77 South Greeley Ave, Chappaqua, NY. A few pictures: (more…)

GQ SPECIAL EDITION: THE STYLE GUY

One of the wisest and wittiest men on the planet, Glenn O’Brien, has just released “The Style Guy” – a special edition magazine from GQ now available on newsstands. Promising “Foolproof solutions for looking your best and succeeding in the world,” the magazine goes well beyond the inner workings of your closet, covering everything from home design with “The 10-Step Guide to a More Stylish Pad,” to sex: “The only advice I feel qualified to give on sex is pretty basic: Stay out of trouble.” As GQ Editor-in-Chief Jim Nelson (more…)

NEW BOOK: HUBBLE’S UNIVERSE

When was the last time you really looked up into the night sky, stared intently at the stars and tried to fathom what you were looking at? Whatever you gazed upon is tiny in comparison to the 350 images captured in the new book “Hubble’s Universe: Greatest Discoveries and Latest Images” by Terence Dickinson. Despite the clinical title only a scientist could pen, the book is stunning and pays tribute to the 12-ton game-changer that was launched into orbit in 1990, rotates the planet every 96 minutes, 360 miles above the Earth’s surface. What (more…)

ANTHOLOGY MAGAZINE

Spotted at the terrific Unionmade store in Larkspur, California, “Anthology” is a quarterly publication focused on “Living with Substance and Style.” Launched in 2010 by Anh-Minh Le and Meg Mateo Ilasco after watching several notable publications go out of business, the magazine is packed with inspiring content for the creative mind. For issue No. 8 titled “It’s a Living,” they delve into the connection between work and home by covering a variety of interesting and highly capable professionals who run their businesses out of a shared space. To pick up a $38, one year subscription, click here. And for a look inside, here are two snapshots from the recent issue:

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DISRUPTION STORIES

The choice of coffee table books in an office lobby can often serve as a precursor of what to expect in a big upcoming meeting. Or at the very least, give you a hint of what that company wants to embody. At a recent meeting at PR juggernaut Porter Novelli, these two massive books welcomed visitors upon arrival: Disruption Stories and The Phaidon Atlas of Contemporary World Architecture. Disruption Stories is a thought-provoking, intelligent overview of successful advertising campaigns by the famed agency TBWA. First published in 2005, it’s a rare and hard to find book but worth tracking down if you enjoy branding case studies, including an in-depth look at the turn around of Apple in the 1980’s. If I have a fancy office someday I’ll lean more towards Where’s Waldo or Tin Tin.

 

HOTEL IL PELLICANO

Spotted at a small shop in Sag Harbor, “Hotel Il Pellicano,” a captivating look at the glamorous, jet-setting lifestyles of those who frequented the legendary Hotel Il Pellicano, overlooking a secluded bay in Tuscany’s Porto Ercole. Released in 2011 by Rizzoli, it’s beautifully and creatively designed, with an imperfect, hand drawn book cover that gives the impression of enjoying a family album. Photographs by the great chroniclers of 60’s & 70’s glamour, John Swope and Slim Aarons captured (more…)

SUMMER READING: MATTERHORN

I just finished “Matterhorn” and it’s one of the best novels I’ve ever read. Iconic author James Patterson writes: “I wouldn’t be surprised if Matterhorn becomes for the Vietnam War what All Quiet on the Western Front was to World War I.” After reading the 5 books that are part of George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Fire & Ice” then John Le Carre’s Karla Trilogy, (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy) it was a natural progression to evolve from swords and Cold War spies to the brutal world of mechanized warfare with Marine Bravo Company heroics, sawed off M60’s and the elusive, highly respected NVA. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who appreciates Patterson, David McCullough and the late Stephen E. Ambrose. $16, available at Amazon.

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