More a meditation on the state of contemporary British design than a catalog of notable names, Design in Britain: Big Ideas (Small Island) is divided by subject matter: products, automobiles, graphics, fashion, architecture, and so on. Taking on one topic each, Design Museum director Deyan Sudjic (who also edited the book), Museum of Modern Art curator Paola Antonelli, critic Rick Poyner, and others offer essays that, together, make the case that “British design” is as much about what gets created within the U.K. as it is about the increasingly global influence of designers from Shakespeare’s sceptered isle. $55; Conran Octopus