Coffee table books are always wonderful to give and to receive. I particularly like photography books because the topics are nearly limitless. Here are two good examples, from the Turner Publishing Company:
Women don’t lie, but if you probe beneath the surface, they do tell half-truths. If you want to successfully sell to a woman, you need to listen to what’s behind the half-truths, and get to the real (or whole) truth. That’s the premise behind the book, What She’s Not Telling You: Why Women Hide the Whole Truth and What Marketers Can Do About It by Mary Lou Quinlan (Just Ask a Woman/Greenleaf Press, November 2009). Ms. Quinlen, and her obviously perceptive, Just Ask a Woman, partners, parlay their own experiences with focus groups into a book that is not just for marketers, but for anyone who wants, or needs, to understand what women are really saying, and respect and respond to their needs. The book has a fast-paced, breezy style, but it’s all business, including the fascinating case studies of many well known brands citing their marketing “misses” and “successes.” This is not “Mars and Venus,” it is common sense strategy that can help you communicate better and, perhaps, finally understand what women really want, on all levels.
Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day: 100 New Recipes Featuring Whole Grains, Fruits, Vegetables, and Gluten-Free Ingredients by Jeff Hertzberg MD and Zoe Francois (Thomas Dunne Books, October 2009). This book is one that you entices you to flip through the pages, eagerly looking at the photographs of yummy bread items. You can almost smell those delicious breads! However, the title is a wee bit misleading, since you can’t make, and bake, a bread in five minutes. Most of the recipes use a basic, pre-prepared dough recipe that you can freeze, then defrost, and finish, on baking day. You still have to make the basic recipe (that takes about 20-30 minutes depending upon how experienced you are with bread baking, in general), and, of course, there is the baking time. But my real problem is that while the recipes appear to be healthy enough, using whole wheat or spelt flour (and there are even some gluten-free recipes), you’ll find yourself eating more bread than you might normally. I’m not a bread baker, but there’s nothing more comforting than a warm bread fresh from the oven. That’s why I gave up using my bread machine! Too much bread, healthy ingredients or not, is still not…well…healthy. For a family or for people who love to entertain, this is a great book.