The Beauty of Books

BBC4 (4 x 30 mins)

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From philosophy, religion, art, science, politics and the rise of ideologies all the way through to fantastical fictions, books have enabled new ideas to reach eager audiences across the globe.

However, they are not simply conveyors of story, knowledge and belief. Some of the most important books in the world are also stunningly beautiful, iconic masterpieces in their own right. Just as you don't judge a book by its cover alone, you don't judge a book by its story alone - the outer and inner make up the whole.

From the first bibles to medieval masterpieces like Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, and from children's stories such as Alice in Wonderland to the beauty of the humble paperback, this series combines human stories, expert interviews, book illustrations and historic archive, to reveal the astonishing, the absorbing, the arresting, beauty of books.