Favorite New Books in the Bookshop


We can only post a handful of the great new items that come into the store on an almost daily basis, so be sure to visit the Museum Bookshop to see our full line of books and gifts. And as always, please note that supplies are limited in our small store space!  To mail order any of the items ilsted below, contact the bookshop at 404.727.2374 weekdays 10am to 4pm.

Atlas Obscura: An Explorer's Guide to the World's Hidden Wonders ($35 hardcover)

As featured on the Slate news site, Atlas Obscura celebrates over 700 of the strangest and most curious places in the world. There are natural wonders—the dazzling glowworm caves in New Zealand, or a baobob tree in South Africa that's so large it has a pub inside. Architectural marvels, including the M.C. Escher-like stepwells in India. Mind-boggling events, like the Baby Jumping Festival in Spain, where men dressed as devils literally vault over rows of squirming infants. Not to mention the Great Stalacpipe Organ in Virginia, Turkmenistan's 40-year hole of fire called the Gates of Hell, eccentric bone museums in Italy, or a weather-forecasting invention that was powered by leeches, still on display in Devon, England. Every page expands our sense of how strange and marvelous the world really is. And with its compelling descriptions, hundreds of photographs, surprising charts, and maps for every region of the world, the book is as appealing to the armchair traveler as the die-hard adventurer.

The Glamour of Strangeness: Artists and the Last Age of the Exotic ($30 hardcover)  

According to Paul Bowles, a tourist travels quickly home, while a traveler moves slowly from one destination to the next. Focusing on six principal subjects, author Jamie James locates "a lost national school" of artists who left their homes for the unknown. There is Walter Spies, the devastatingly handsome German painter who remade his life in Bali; Raden Saleh, the Javanese painter who found fame in Europe; Isabelle Eberhardt, a Russian-Swiss writer who roamed the Sahara dressed as an Arab man; the American experimental filmmaker Maya Deren, who went to Haiti and became a committed follower of voodoo. From France, Paul Gauguin set sail for Tahiti; Victor Segalen, a naval doctor, poet, and novelist, immersed himself in classical Chinese civilization in imperial Peking. James evokes these extraordinary lives in portraits that bring the transcultural artist into sharp relief. Drawing on his own career as a travel writer and years of archival research uncovering previously unpublished letters and journals, James creates a penetrating investigation of the powerful connection between art and the exotic.

Art as Therapy ($16.95 softcover)
Two authorities on popular culture (Alain de Botton is the author of the bestselling How Proust Can Change Your Life) reveal the ways in which art can enhance mood and enrich lives - now available in paperback. This passionate, thought-provoking, often funny, and always-accessible book proposes a new way of looking at art, suggesting that it can be useful, relevant, and therapeutic. Through practical examples, the world-renowned authors argue that certain great works of art have clues as to how to manage the tensions and confusions of modern life. Chapters on love, nature, money, and politics show how art can help with many common   difficulties, from forging good relationships to coming to terms with mortality.

Footnotes from the World’s Greatest Bookstores: True Tales and Lost Moments from Book Buyers, Booksellers, and Book Lovers ($22 hardcover)
How could we not love this one? New Yorker cartoonist Bob Eckstein gathers the greatest untold stories from seventy-five of the world’s most renowned bookstores (both past and present) and pairs them with evocative color illustrations of each shop. Here is a portrait of our lifelong love affair with bookstores that is at once heartfelt, bittersweet, and filled with good cheer. Includes contributions from David Bowie, Tom Wolfe, Jonathan Lethem, Roz Chast, Deepak Chopra, Bob Odenkirk, Philip Glass, Jonathan Ames, Terry Gross, Mark Maron, Neil Gaiman, Ann Patchett, Chris Ware, Molly Crabapple, Amitav Ghosh, Alice Munro, Dave Eggers, and more.

Prospero's Cell: A Guide to the Landscape and Manners of the Island of Corfu ($12 paperback)
A Carlos Reads book club selection, Lawrence Durrell's 1974 memoir about his discovery of the island of Corfu before World War Two. Early in 1937, at the age of 25, he and his new wife took an old fisherman’s house on the north end of the island and began to explore the enchanted world that they found. They swam, fished, sailed, harvested olives, savored wine and foods unknown in England, visited sites of interest and beauty, and enjoyed meeting a procession of uniquely colorful locals. This island idyll came to an abrupt end in 1941, as the Germans prepared their invasion of Greece. Durrell left Corfu “with a regret . . . luxurious and . . . deep.” He was evacuated by sea to Alexandria where he worked for the British government, published a literary journal, and gathered impressions that would eventually take shape as The Alexandria Quartet.

Lens on Syria: A Photographic Tour of Its Ancient and Modern Culture ($29.99 softcover)
Thousands of remarkable monuments and relics fill the land of Syria from the coast of the Mediterranean to its desert borders, dating back to the dawn of human history incuding Bronze Age ruins, Roman temples and necropolises, churches and monasteries from the early Christian and Byzantine eras, Muslim forts and mosques, Crusader castles, and many more. When conflict broke out in 2011, these treasures were put at great risk and in subsequent years, many were destroyed in battles—some were even the intentional targets of extremists. From 2006–2009, American photographer Daniel Demeter traveled broadly throughout Syria, documenting the country’s warm and kindhearted people, vibrant markets, exciting landscapes, archaeological sites, historic monuments, and religious architecture. In seven chapters organized by region, Lens on Syria offers a unique visual experience of pre-war Syria and serves as an invaluable record of the country’s long history, rich heritage, and diverse culture.

The Rise of Athens: The Story of the World's Greatest Civilization  ($35 hardcover)
Bestselling historian Anthony Everitt has just published this celebratory history of the city-state that transformed the world, from the democratic revolution that marked its beginning, through the city's political and cultural golden age, to its decline into the ancient equivalent of a modern-day university town. Everitt includes unforgettable portraits of the talented, tricky, ambitious, and unscrupulous Athenians who fueled the city's rise: Themistocles, the brilliant naval strategist who led the Greeks to a decisive victory over their Persian enemies; Pericles, arguably the greatest Athenian statesman of them all; and the wily Alcibiades, who changed his political allegiance several times during the course of the Peloponnesian War and died in a hail of assassins arrows. Here also are riveting you-are-there accounts of the milestone battles that defined the Hellenic world: Thermopylae, Marathon, and Salamis among them. An unparalleled storyteller, Everitt combines erudite, thoughtful historical analysis with stirring narrative set pieces that capture the colorful, dramatic, and exciting world of ancient Greece.

CARLOS BOOKSHOP BESTSELLER! Thou Spleeny Swag-Bellied Miscreant: Create-Your-Own Shakespearean Insults ($12.95)
If you must be offensive, hearken back to Elizabethan days for more salacious and outrageous word choices with this flip-card reference book of Tudor impertinence. Impress your friends with your mastery of lewd iambic pentameter, and vanquish your enemies with the power of the bard.  After all, a toad-spotted pignut by any other name would be as foul-reeking and pestilent!