Stephen Bayley; City Secrets: London; Edited by Tim Adams; Granta; pounds 11.99
Like wine and flowers, books are the best gift because they flatter the recipient's taste and deliver value way beyond price. I am laying in a stock of City Secrets: London for Christmas.
This is a simple formula, superbly executed. The series started with Rome, but now writers, architects, artists and a menagerie of opinionated know- it-alls (myself included) have been asked to contribute recommendations and prose descriptions of a favourite London venue, haunt or experience.