Books: A Living History

Books: A Living History

  1. Martyn Lyons
  • ISBN 9780500251652
  • 25.40 x 19.00 cm
  • Hardback
  • 224pp
  • 266 Illustrations, 214 in colour
  • First published 2011

This beautifully produced volume is a feast for traditional book lovers as well as an inspiration for those excited by the information revolution

‘A feast for bibliophiles and those fascinated by the world of print’ – We Love This Book
‘Thames & Hudson are renowned for their beautiful production and design, and this book is no exception … a beautiful and beguiling book … ’ – Learned Publishing
‘A colourful, attractive and approachable overview of the development of the book over time and across the world … the scholarship in the book is very sound and based on a wide-ranging knowledge of book history’ – The Book Collector
‘Opulently illustrated … a feast for book lovers everywhere, this richly informative volume celebrates the enduring power of books throughout the ages and stakes its claim to a similar role in ages yet to come’ – Good Book Guide
‘The perfect present for bibliophiles’ - Oldie

For two and a half thousand years, books have been used to entertain, to govern, to record, to educate and to worship – one of the most versatile, useful and enduring technologies ever invented.

Books: A Living History

Books: A Living History charts the evolution and influence of books, from Sumerian clay tablets through the development of moveable type to the emergence of eBooks and digital technology. The carefully selected illustrations include Mayan codices, Egyptian papyrus scrolls, medieval illuminated manuscripts, printing by Gutenberg and Aldus Manutius, children’s books, dime novels, Japanese manga and works of fiction from Don Quixote to Level 26, the world’s first ‘digi-novel’, and beyond.

Martyn Lyons is a professor in the School of Humanities at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. His publications include Readers and Society in Nineteenth-Century France: Workers, Women, Peasants and The Writing Culture of Ordinary People in Europe, c. 1860–1920.