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Woodshop Library

THE WORKSHOP, by Scott Gibson, takes the reader on a tour of 33 shops and profiles the owners. There's a range of small shops presented, found in two-car garages, barns, industrial parks and strip malls, as well as three woodworking schools. Some of the shops are recognizable, such as the 18th-century cabinet shop at Colonial Williamsburg or the studio of the late George Nakashima. But most of the shops are off the beaten path and it's a treat to spend time with the likes of Jere Osgood, Michael Fortune and Christian Becksvoort as they explain the construction of the their shops, the machinery and tools, and their methods of work. There are several shops where hand tools are favored over machines, while another shop is filled with CNC equipment. The entire range is presented with insightful profiles and close to 300 color photographs. It's a beautiful book that will inspire any woodworker. The 202-page hardcover sells for $34.95. Contact: Taunton Direct, 63 S. Main St., P.O. Box 5507, Newtown, CT06470-5507. Tel: 800-888-8286.

FRESH WOOD features furniture from the 2003 Student Design Contest at the AWFS Fair in Anaheim, Calif. It's also a fund-raising effort on behalf of WoodLINKS USA, an organization which supports woodworking education, slated to receive 40 percent of the net proceeds. The book includes 100 photographs and information on each of the finalists, along with interviews with judges, students, teachers and furniture maker Sam Maloof. The 160-page softcover sells for $35. Contact: Association of Woodworking & Furnishings Suppliers, 5733 Rickenbacker Road, Commerce, CA90040. Tel: 800-946-2937. designbook.html

WOOD FINISHING FIXES, by Michael Dresdner, provides clear, concise answers to more than 175 frequently asked questions. It covers how to avoid and fix finishing problems with chapters on finish selection, finish preparation, application tools and methods, the use of solvents and strippers, achieving a desired color and sheen, repair techniques, and maintaining a finish. It's designed as a quick reference book so when you have a problem, you can flip to the solution, and is suitable for both the amateur and professional. Dresdner is a reliable source with more than 20 years of experience as a professional finisher and as the author of several books and countless magazine articles. The book also features the photography of Sandor Nagyszalanczy. The 138-page softcover sells for $19.95. Contact: Taunton Direct, P.O. Box 5507, Newtown, CT06470-5507. Tel: 800-888-8286.

WOOD ART TODAY, by Dona Z. Meilach, is a design book on furniture, vessels and sculpture. Meilach has authored five other design books, published in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and this represents a return to the gallery-of-work series. The furniture ranges from Sam Maloof's classic rocker to work from today's leaders in the art-furniture movement. There's some head-scratching work in the turning section, which will leave you wondering how the maker accomplished the final piece, and in more than a few instances, what it's supposed to be. A constant theme is that furniture makers, turners and sculptors are now freely borrowing ideas and techniques from one another to create their art. It's said that preceding books inspired a future generation of woodworkers. Maybe this will do the same. The 256-page hardcover sells for $59.95. Contact: Schiffer Publishing Ltd., 4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA19310. Tel: 610-593-1777.

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