All regular readers know how much I love books - being the child of librarians and spending most of my time in libraries while growing up will do that.
My love of them extends not just to the written word but to the look and feel of them and, while I'm going through a period of extreme 'meh' with the literary world at the moment, I can't not love the care & attention that is being put into the presentation of books right now.
I speak not of the dross of the usual gaudy & banal sci-fi/fantasy (Harry Potter, come on up..) or 'popular' fiction (popular with who exactly?), but books like McSweeney's hardcovers - beautiful cover, matt finish, a joy to the hand and eye. I'd buy one just to have on my shelf if I could justify it.
Also The Method Actors by Carl Shuker - a paperback but beautiful all the same (yes, I'm biased in favour of hardcovers), and The Eternal Frontier by Tim Flannery.
Another is the hardcover of On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan. That book is stunningly beautiful. Unfortunately I've no desire to read it after having read Atonement and was bored, distanced, engrossed, bored, enthralled, moved, and eventually conned and let down by it. And then trying to read Saturday but not getting past the bored stage. Yes he's an awesome writer with great prose but ultimately he doesn't draw me in to his stories.
I recently bought the Absolute Watchmen. Oh. My God. That is an incredible graphic novel (best ever? possibly so..) and a stunning looking package. Rivals my Absolute Sandman Vol 1 for sheer impressive beauty. Oh, and I'm trying desperately to ignore the film version of Watchmen that's in the pipeline - Tom Cruise wants to play Ozymandias FFS...
So, given that I'm not going to just buy a book for the look of it, anyone got any suggestions for a good read?