Hardcover: 256 pages
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams; First Edition (US) First Printing edition (October 1, 2006)
Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 1 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #228,955 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #17 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Clocks & Watches #21164 in Books > Teens
Finally, a great book on watches. What makes this book so special is that it works for everyone who loves timepieces, whether they're beginners or experts.The book is divided into several sections, including a smart introduction on "what is a watch?" and an informative history of timepieces. The bulk of the book is an interesting survey of fifty of the greatest brands of all time, from Patek to Elgin, from Audemars to Zenith. Then comes one of the best parts of the book--a very useful section on how to collect and maintain your watches, plus instructive first-person accounts from some of the world's top collectors. Finally, there's a glossary of understandable definitions of the most common watch terms.Most of all, there are over 600 stunning color illustrations, culled from auction houses, private collections, watch companies, as well as hundreds of original photographs shot exclusively for the book.All in all, this makes a great gift and a great resource guide. What a wonderful book!
One of the best illustrated books you can find on fine time pieces. The nice thing about this book, besides being very thorough, is that it is very contemporary, with many examples of vintage as well as more recent time pieces.
What's best about this beautiful book is that nearly everything else published about watches is sponsored by the watch industry itself. Here, finally, is an independent voice telling watch lovers, whether newbies or longtime fans, everything they ever wanted to know about the watch world. The book starts off with an extremely informative history of the watch (I had no idea that World War I was responsible for the growth of the wristwatch and the demise of the pocket watch). The meat of the book is information about the fifty brands the author feels every watch lover should know about--illustrated with some of the most beautiful photos I've ever seen. As appealing as the material is, what's more interesting is which brands are excluded from the discussion. Although the book is a celebration of watches, the most critical parts of the book are those of omission--for instance, there's nothing here about Movado's modern watches, an indication the author thinks little of them, or, in the Hamilton section, no indication that modern Hamiltons are worth buying. My favorite part of the book is the first person interviews with watch collectors, who explain how they got hooked, and what their current passions are. There's also an excellent glossary of watch terms. All in all, this is a book that belongs in every watch lover's library.
The watch collectors have their own online forums - as do most collectors today. This book was put together partially by asking them to contribute their photos, so all the compliments about the photos being superb (and they are) is a pat on the back of the collectors who donated their time, effort, and passion about watches by giving their photos for use in the book.
This book is like my bible. I study it and read it regularly and it always cheers me up on a rainy day when I look at the beautiful pictures of watches. Sounds like I need a life, right? Whatever, get this book!
I am a fan of luxury watches and this book is a marvel if you want to have great quality pictures and good reference information about the watches their history and the movements.I was a bit surprised by its size and quality it is a great book for your living room or just to enjoy on your weekends turning over the pages over the most advanced and luxurious pieces of fine machinery men have build with their hands. It contains reference of the main brands and their most representative models up to 2010, however most of these machines do not evolve as much as digital or other mechanical devices so its reference value can be sustained in the long term.
As a watch enthusiast, as well as a professional journal copy editor, I approach books of this genre with perhaps more of a "critical eye" than would the casual reader. Simply stated, this is an extremely well-written monograph. Indeed, it is rare to come across a "trade"- or "craft"-type publication wherein the author is articulate and actually displays a fine mastery of the English language (devoid of jargon), equal to his mastery of the technical subject under discussion (in this case, timepieces). A joy to read because it is well-written, well-organized and accompanied by stunningly beautiful photographs of a sampling of the watches being described. Another nice touch are the lists -- a bit like "top ten lists" -- found near the end of the book that cluster certain brands or models for their distinctiveness as a group, e.g. "12 Great Vintage Watches" or "9 Watches to Make You Feel Like You're in a Cockpit", etc. Any criticism would be directed to the author having omitted several important brands, but he does explain the reason why it was necessary to do so. The absence of any indication of the approximate value (either when new or presently) of the timepieces that are illustrated, is also unfortunate. There are, of course, other sources of information about the value of prestigious watches; however, it would have been nice to provide the reader, on the spot, with some idea about the approximate value of the watches displayed. I know that I -- even with my considerable understanding of this subject -- was curious as to what that Patek Philippe Perpetual could be selling for! All in all, a highly-recommended book particularly for the enthusiast. A nice coffee table addition, as well.
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