Princeton University Press books for giving

Browse below for some of our favorite titles for gifting of the season.

Welcome to the Universe: An Astrophysical Tour
Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Michael Strauss, and Richard Gott

“Reading through is akin to receiving a private museum tour from an expert scientist. . . . As Tyson, Strauss, and Gott explain the cutting-edge physics of multiverses, superstring theory, M-theory, and the benefits of colonizing space, even seasoned science readers will learn something new.”
Publishers Weekly

Universe
World War I and American Art
Robert Cozzolino, Anne Classen Knutson, and David M. Lubin

“This is the first major book to examine the repercussions of the Great War on American art. Featuring first-rate scholarship in accessible prose, the book shows how this traumatic conflict had a profound effect on American visual culture, yielding not just memorable propaganda posters, but also art that subtly acknowledged the war.”
—Cécile Whiting, author of Pop L.A.: Art and the City in the 1960s

WWI
Makers of Jewish Modernity: Thinkers, Artists, Leaders, and the World They Made
Jacques Picard, Jacques Revel, Michael P. Steinberg & Idith Zertal

“The editors of [Makers of Jewish Modernity] exceed their stated goal of showing how various Jewish public figures ‘transformed the 20th century,’ through 43 profiles of subjects both expected . . . and surprising. . . . The entries, which assume no prior knowledge, convey a great deal of information and cogent analysis in a short space.”
Publishers Weekly

Jewish
Kafka: The Early Years
Reiner Stach
Translated by Shelley Frisch

Praise for the previous volumes: “This is one of the great literary biographies, to be set up there with, or perhaps placed on an even higher shelf than, Richard Ellmann’s James Joyce, George Painter’s Marcel Proust, and Leon Edel’s Henry James. . . . [A]n eerily immediate portrait of one of literature’s most enduring and enigmatic masters.”
—John Banville, New York Review of Books

Kafka

The Grammar of Ornament : A Visual Reference of Form and Colour in Architecture and the Decorative Arts
Owen Jones

“The illustrations are delightful . . . it is easy to pick a page at random and find a bit of tasty decorative information to digest.”
—Ted Loos, Introspective Magazine

Jones
Soulmaker: The Times of Lewis Hine
Alexander Nemerov

“[A] fascinating exploration of Hine’s work.”
—Elizabeth Roberts, Black & White Photography

Soulmaker

Living on Paper: Letters of Iris Murdoch 1934-1995
Iris Murdoch
Edited by Avril Horner and Anne Rowe

“Murdoch belonged to a generation and class for whom the handwritten letter was as necessary as breathing. . . . Although Murdoch destroyed many of her letters and journals and may well have instructed her correspondents to do the same, a mountain survives. The selection Horner and Rowe have made offers insight into many corners of her life and work.”
—John Sutherland, New York Times Book Review

Murdoch

Silent Sparks: The Wondrous World of Fireflies
Sara Lewis

“Lewis takes readers into the realm of fireflies. . . . An excellent option for insect fans and anyone curious about the lightning bugs in their yards.”
Library Journal, starred review

Lewis
How to Grow Old: Ancient Wisdom for the Second Half of Life
Marcus Tullius Cicero
Translated by Philip Freeman

“[A] covetable little translation.”
—Karen Shook, Times Higher Education

Old

How to Win an Argument: An Ancient Guide to the Art of Persuasion
Marcus Tullius Cicero
Edited by James M. May

“Presented with magisterial expertise, this book introduces the core principles of public speaking in a nutshell. James May’s writing is clear and charming.”
—Robert N. Gaines, The University of Alabama

Argument

Following the Wild Bees: The Craft and Science of Bee Hunting
Thomas D. Seeley

“Anyone deeply interested in natural history will ignore this mad little volume at their peril.”
—Simon Ings, New Scientist

Seeley
The Brooklyn Nobody Knows: An Urban Walking Guide
William B. Helmreich

“Even Brooklyn residents will learn something new in this inclusive book, the first of five planned New York City walking guides. . . . Crisp pictures, such as those of Mrs. Maxwell’s Bakery—New York’s largest party cake store—safety tips, and an impressive bibliography are welcome additions to an appealing work for locals, tourists, and urban explorers.”
Library Journal

Brooklyn

A Savage War
Williamson Murray and Wayne Wei-Siang Hsieh

“[An] outstanding account of the American Civil War. . . . This expertly
written narrative will draw in anyone with an interest in the Civil War
at any knowledge level.”
Library Journal, starred review

Savage

The Joy of SET: The Many Mathematical Dimensions of a Seemingly Simple Card Game
Liz McMahon, Gary Gordon, Hannah Gordon, and Rebecca Gordon

“Humorous and conversational, this book is a pleasure to read.”
—Arthur Benjamin, author of The Magic of Math: Solving for x and Figuring Out Why

SET

Get Some R&R This Holiday Season (Read about Religion)

With the holiday season upon us, we’re busy decorating, planning out menus worthy of a 5-star restaurant, and worrying about gifts. But underneath the material chaos, many may be thinking more consciously of the holidays their families celebrate and their religious roots.

This holiday season, PUP has several books that explore major world religions and what they mean—and have meant throughout history.

Fk10560irst up is the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, which begins on December 6th of this year and ends on the 14th. The Love of God, published this Fall, takes readers on an exploration of one of the most essential aspects of Judaism—the love of God.

Delving into the origins of the concept and tracing its beginnings to the ancient institution of the covenant, Jon D. Levenson explains the love of God in Judaism as a profoundly personal two-way relationship, expressed in God’s love for the people of Israel. Levenson examines the ways in which this bond has endured through countless persecutions and tribulations. To read further on Levenson’s thoughts on his new book, check out his recent Q&A here.k10587

Not long after Hanukkah comes to an end this year, the celebration of the prophet’s birthday occurs on the 24th of December in the US. While there are mixed ideas of how to celebrate the Prophet Muhammad’s birthday—celebrations can range from parades, decorations, readings, and food donations—others make it a time of quiet reflection and choose to fast or put aside more time to read the Koran.

The late Shahab Ahmed’s book, What is Islam? The Importance of Being Islamic, is a fascinating new look at Islam that challenges many preconceived notions. Ahmed re-imagines a new concept of the historical constitution of Islamic law while placing it in a philosophical, ethical, and political context. An important read for anyone looking to see the religion of Islam in a new and intriguing light.

The bk10688irth of Jesus Christ is a story Christians and non-Christians alike are familiar with, but many who celebrate Christmas are unacquainted with other aspects of the Christian faith. George Marsden’s C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity: A Biography takes readers on the journey that C.S. Lewis took from atheism to Anglicanism in his well-known book, Mere Christianity. Marsden delves into Lewis’s passionate defense of the Christian religion and explores how it correlates to Lewis’s Narnia books and other writings, describing why Lewis’s case for Christianity has endured for so long, continuing to cultivate both critics and fervent admirers to this day.

These three books are a wonderful way to take a break this holiday season (and every holiday season for that matter) and reflect on why we celebrate these holidays and what they say about our closely held traditions.

Stumped for a last minute gift idea? Try these books

Buying gift or coffee-table books online can be nerve-wracking when all you have to go on is the cover and maybe, if you’re lucky, a couple of sample pages. What will the book really look like? Will it be gift-y enough? We want to take the uncertainty out of the process for you with these videos that show off three of our sumptuous recommended gift books. These books are all available now to complete your last minute holiday shopping.

Enjoy!

Penguins: The Ultimate Guide: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10335.html

The Bee: A Natural History: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10336.html

Atlas of Cities: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10307.html

 

For additional holiday gift recommendations, please click here.