I love coffee table books. I love the weight of them, the glossiness, the promise that within their shiny pages your life will be somewhat enhanced: with knowledge, beauty, culture, history. I love that the books that we leave on display for guests to see can be an insight into who we are and what’s happening in our lives.
Right now, I’m writing my fourth novel which is partly set in 1955 – the Golden Era of Broadway. I’ve been obsessive about the research and my collection of books about New York, Broadway musicals and the 1950s has filtered into every area of my life – even my lounge. Having them on my coffee table means I can be working, even when I’m having a glass of wine in the evening.
The books that we leave on display for guests to see can be an insight into who we are.
I like to rotate my latte-literature pile every few weeks – a coffee table carousel if you like. I always have three in a pile (of course!) and I try and make them a coherent group: whether it’s by colour, theme or size. My current stash been there for a while, so I’m currently thinking about what my next trio of coffee table treats will be… a colour theme, perhaps?
We’re currently attempting to re-design our rather neglected garden. Gardening is not a natural skill of mine, but ideas I can do. This book is full of inspiration from gardens of all shapes and sized around the world. I’m hoping a few weeks of flicking through it will turn me into a design expert… then my husband can do the hard graft!
I’ve been fascinated by Grace Coddington ever since I saw her in The September Issue. With her fiery flame-red hair and passion for wildly inventive fashion stories (and the only one brave enough to stand up to the Ice Queen herself – Anna Wintour) her life story is as fascinating as those she curated for US Vogue for the past two decades.
In a year of countless celebrity losses, Bowie stands out as an icon amongst icons. Whether your cultural reference is Ziggy Stardust, or, as mine rather uncoolly is – The Gnome King from Labyrinth – this book gives a reverential bow to Bowie’s cultural legacy.