We actually don’t have any coffee tables in our house (it’s a vaastu thing), so we’d call these “end table books.” I like to display books around the house – so the kids can browse through them when they want. I rotate the books (like I do with our toys) every now and then to keep things fresh – but these 3 are my absolute favourites – and are always story-starters for the kids:
Light of India: A Conflagration of Indian Matchbox Art by Warren Dotz : This is much more than a book of pretty matchbox visuals – think of it as a concise distillation of Indian history, culture and iconography. From images of India’s historical heroes, architecture, religious and political symbols – it’s great learning for the kids. It really is “India in a matchbox.”
Around the Word in 80 Plates by Rashmi Uday Singh: From Asia to Europe and Africa and Australia, this book is a collection of recipes from 80 celebrated chefs around the world. AND all the dishes are vegetarian! I fail to understand why this book hasn’t received more press - it’s a must-have in any gastronome’s library.
Beasts of India by Gita Wolf and Kanchana Arni: This is an amazing compilation of Indian folk and tribal art that kids can really relate to. There are pictures of lions, tigers and other “beasts” in various regional art – even my 4-year-old can distinguish between Madhubani and Gond styles. And the book is actually “handmade” – it’s screenprinted on handmade paper. Talk about art!
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