Chanel – Her Life (Steidl, $58) by Justine Picardie with drawings by Karl Lagerfeld.
This new biography of the inimitable Coco Chanel is being billed as the definitive biography of Mlle Chanel for good reason. The author, Justine Picardie, was granted access to the Chanel archives, and is the first biographer to have had access to private archives in the UK and France. The book examines Gabrielle–the real Chanel, and her private life–as well as her fashion empire. There are loads of black and white photos of the legendary designer that paint her in a different light–she’s fishing, riding horses, and shooting guns–but the best images are the hand drawn sketches by Karl Lagerfeld himself.