Kindle-Toting Muggles Rejoice
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Harry Potter is finally bringing his magic to the world of eBook readers.

The publishing empire that is JK Rowling has reached a distribution deal that will allow you to carry all 4,176 pages of the Harry Potter series around in your coat pocket—provided that your coat pocket is holding an Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook or one of the handful of other compatible device like the Sony Reader.

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THE Art Museum Book

If you could curate the ultimate art museum with an unlimited budget what works of art would you choose to display?

A team of over 100 editors, art historians and archeologists spent more than a decade tackling that very question. The result of their collective research is displayed in an epic volume titled, appropriately, The Art Museum.

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The Treehouse Book

Once purely the stuff of children’s fantasies, treehouses have gone upscale and grown-up. (Dare we say “mainstream?”)

The Treehouse Book explores all the possibilities for arboreal housing. It is not really the how-to manual it bills itself to be—there are better books for that. But the photos and descriptions in this book will provoke inspiration for creative types, jealousy among treehouse lovers and instill an urge to climb a tree among nearly everybody.

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Fashionary: The Fashion Sketchbook + More
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Fashionary describes their hard-covered, well constructed tomes as “sketchbooks tailor-made for fashion designers.” It is a rare case of a manufacturer underselling their own product.

The Fashionary book does indeed provide a fantastic forum for clothes creativity to flow. Each book contains 130 pages of templates: silhouette outlines of a male or female figure (depending on what Fashionary you choose) upon which aspiring designers can sketch out fashion ideas. The silhouettes are faint enough that the templates can be used as blank pages. And if you run out of templates, or want different ones to work with, more are available on the Fashionary website for free.

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Alice in iPadland

When Alice tumbled down the rabbit hole into Wonderland she found herself in an entirely new world in which nothing worked how she expected it would.

You might get that same surreal feeling the first time you experience Lewis Carroll’s classic tale on an iPad.

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Three Books To Help You Survive Anything

Poisonous snakes, cars careening off of roads into rivers, hurricanes and tornadoes, crashing planes stranding their surviving passengers on deserted uncharted islands, killer bees, gall stones, bad blind dates, eroding urban infrastructure—with these and many more everyday dangers it is amazing that anyone manages to live into adulthood.

Fortunately, there’s advice to be found. Here are three cool books that, taken together, will help you survive nearly everything:

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The Timelessly Cool Tao Te Ching

Driving home this evening we heard on NPR radio an excellent audio review of the Tao Te Ching. It’s been over 15 years since we’ve read the venerable Taoist text, and over 8,000 years since Lao Tzu first committed it’s words to rice paper, and still the Tao Te Ching is getting press and drawing attention. Why? Because you needn’t be religious, or new agey, or Chinese or even particularly thoughtful to find nuggets of simple truth expressed within the Tao Te Ching’s pages. We recommend reading the book slowly, taking in a single page or a few paragraphs per day. However you choose to read it, pick yourself up a copy if you don’t already have one collecting dust on your bookshelf. Some things remain eternally cool.


TV Can Make You Smarter

He his book, Everything Bad Is Good for You: How Today’s Popular Culture Is Actually Making Us Smarter, author Steven Johnson examines the scientific research behind why watching certain television shows can increase your mental acuity. And we aren’t talking PBS documentaries here but crime dramas, spy stories and even reality shows. Especially beneficial are shows that include overlapping plot strands, develop a large number of characters and make make frequent use of flash-forwards and flash-backs. [via HubPages]


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