Reading Gifts

Dig a little deeper into the interests of someone close to you by gifting them a book or magazine on the subject they love. It will go a long way to sharing happiness this Christmas.
Ryan O'Neal and Ali MacGraw in Love Story, 1970 (Photo Alamy)

Thought to be less personal than jewellery, but far more telling of the giver (and what they think of the recipient) than anything in a small velvet box – a book is perhaps a gift that has the least scope to hurt feelings. Asides from buying a gift because you think it’s the least risky – a book or magazine can be very informative and a welcome distraction from everything that is going on around you. Bereft of the extended family this Christmas, people are likely to have a little more time to sit back in their armchairs in front of the fire and get stuck into the contents of a good piece of literature. Here at The Rake we have an enviable selection of books from some of the best-known publishers, plus a rare opportunity to buy back issues of The Rake magazine.

Discernment of the subjects that a friend eulogizes, rightly carries a lot of weight. Literature on the topic is a perfect way to beam awareness of such topical leanings. If it's fashion, Assouline’s book, The Impossible Collection of Fashion which showcases the most iconic dresses of the twentieth century will be a suitable gift. On the same theme and from the same famed book publisher, Assouline’s book on Yves Saint Laurent will also be a welcome gift for the fashion lovers. Alternatively, the glittering Château de Versailles has housed many of the most stylish people of all time and you can read more about the iconic French Palace, befittingly also in the form of an Assouline published book. The publishing house began as a family company in the basement of its founders Martine and Prosper Assouline’s apartment in Paris.

    If it is the codes of classic men’s elegance that prods your excitement, its bible, The Rake magazine in the form of a 24-month subscription, will be a greatly appreciated present. Or if they’re a recent subscriber and have always yearned to delve further into The Rake’s publishing history, there is a seldom opportunity to purchase a selection of the magazine’s back issues.

      Selected by curator and art historian Paul Moorhouse, Assouline presents Salvador Dalí: The Impossible Collection. Spotlighting 100 works by Dali, his pioneering predilection of Surrealism is well documented in this book. Another artist carrying an aura of mystique is Jean-Michel Frank. Assouline’s portrait of the iconic interior designer, will at least shed some useful light on the man known for his minimalist designs. Finally, to update the artistic section of your library, Assouline’s culmination of the underground film journal Interview magazine into a hard-back showcasing 50 years of the journal is certainly one to open up the minds of pop culture cohorts.

        Admirers of the Bentley will no doubt be able to find room for more literary works on the great car manufacturer. Housed in a hand-stitched leather-bound, Assouline and British motoring expert Andrew Frankel presents the book, Bentley: The impossible Collection of 100 at 100. It is part of Assouline’s Ultimate Collection and would keep the recipient engaged for some time considering the detail in the book. For something a little less content heavy, Assouline’s book, Be Extraordinary: The Spirit of Bentley really delves into the heart of the car brand. Alternatively, The Time to Race Book, captures the historical unions of car racing and watches.

          Watch collectors will be glad to know it’s not just watches from the most distinguished watch brands that we stock. The Rake’s collection of books on horology stretches from The Moonwatch Book, which focuses on the identification of historical Speedmaster models to The Audemars Piguet 20th Century Complicated Wristwatches Book. Alternatively, Assouline’s book on Bulova chronicles the extraordinary American watch company.

            Drinking and smoking often go hand in hand; especially when your puffing on a Cuban import from Hunters & Frankau that balances perfectly with a Speyside single malt. To help someone close to you extend their knowledge on both of these luxuries Assouline’s Impossible Collection series on cigars and whisky as separate books, comes with all the refinement you can expect when inducing yourself through these forms of recreation.




              Freddie Anderson


              December 2020


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