Here are coffee table books that have crossed our desks recently.
"THE WORLD OF SMURFS: A Celebration of Tiny Blue Proportions," by Matt. Murray, Abrams, $27.95, 127 pages
This illustrated history traces the Smurfs from their 1958 debut as a Belgium comic strip through the U.S. television series and the debut of the recent movie. It includes profiles of the named characters — both Smurf and human.
It's detailed and entertaining read for those interested in the blue creatures three apples high.
"ROCKABILLY: The Twang Heard 'Round the World," edited by Michael Dregni, Voyageur Press, $30, 232 pages
"Rockabilly" sprung out of country, bluegrass, jazz and blues into what is now known as rock 'n' roll. This history edited by Michael Dregni traces the roots of rockabilly from Elvis Presley to the music of Carl Perkins, Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran and Johnny Cash. This history includes several hundred photographs and concert posters along with interviews with dozens of other rockabilly stars. — Christine Rappleye
"QUEEN The Ultimate Illustrated History of the Crown Kings of Rock," by Phil Sutcliffe, Voyageur Press, $24.99, 288 pages
Phil Sutcliffe's illustrated history of the "Crown Kings of Rock" is sure to satisfy any Queen fan. Packed with photos, posters and memorabilia of the band that put the "glam" in rock, Sutcliffe has done an excellent job in creating a visually stunning documentation of the bands path to fame and fortune in this paperback version of the book. Some may say, "its a kind of magic."
Sutcliffe successfully takes you from the intimate beginnings of Mercury, May, Taylor and Deacon, and into the Rock in Rio festival in Brazil. All the while presenting a subtle undertone of the personal trials and insecurities that each individual faced, leaving you with a surprisingly in-depth look at a global success. It does contain some graphic images and may not be considered inappropriate for children and youths. — Rob Johnson
"JAMES LEVINE: 40 Years at the Metropolitan Opera," Amadeus Press, $35, 230 pages
It was June 5, 1971, when Metropolitan Opera Music Director James Levine's company debuted there. This decade-by-decade look at his 40 years in the post includes stories and recollections from some of opera's stars.
"FOLK ART OF THE ANDES," by Barbara Mauldin, Museum of New Mexico Press, $50, 304 pages
From religious to festival art, Barbara Mauldin explores the creative accomplishments of the Andean people in the highland region of South America. She includes more than 400 color images in this collection designed to coincide with an exhibition at the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, N.M.
"IN SEARCH OF DOMINGUEZ & ESCALANTE: Photographing the 1776 Spanish Expedition through the Southwest," by Greg Mac Gregor and Siegfried Halus, Museum of New Mexico Press, $50, 232 pages
Using the journal of Franciscan friar Silvestre Velez de Escalante, editors Greg Mac Gregor and Siegfried Halus have recreated a photographic the journey Escalante and fellow friar Atanasio Dominguez along with cartographer Don Bernardo Miera y Pacheco and Ute-speaking guides, covered 1800 miles looking for an overland route from Santa Fe, N.M., to Monterey, Calif. Photographers took a similar path as the explorers through four states. — Christine Rappleye