Books for the Alternative Coffee Table

End Time City, photographs by Michael Ackerman (Scalo,
$49.95). Ackerman’s view of street life in the Indian city of
Benares is at once unforgettably beautiful and nightmarish, a work
that falls somewhere between documentary and apocalyptic vision.

Michelangelo: The PietAs by Antonio Paulucci, with
photographs by Aurelio Amendola (Skira, $65). This gorgeous study
of three sculptures, each from a different point in Michelangelo’s
long career, highlights both his unparalleled gift and the camera’s
astonishing ability to reveal it.

Full Moon by Michael Light; essay by Andrew Chaikin
(Knopf, $50). The great unclouded triumph of the American
Century–landing men on the moon–is revisited in these spectacular
shots selected from NASA’s vast photo archive of the Apollo

Baraka: A Visual Journal by Mark Magidson (St. Ann’s,
$65). Drawing on the work and vision that led to his 1993 film of
the same name, Magidson surveys the forces at play in a world
inexorably shaped by both destructive fury and sublime grace.

Closing: The Life and Death of an American Factory by
Bill Bamberger and Cathy N. Davidson (DoubleTake/Norton, $27.50).
The other side of today’s economic boom, a story seldom told, is
captured here in a simple but powerful photo essay on the last days
of a century-old business in a small factory town.

In-depth coverage of eye-opening issues that affect your life.