Design is Storytelling, by Ellen Lupton is both beautiful and well written. Combines narrative theory with design methods.
Alice Hawthorn’s first book, Hello World, is a favorite — it’s a fantastic overview of the history of modern design. Every pro designer should read it (designers have poor history knowledge of their field).
The Responsible Object: A History of Design Ideology for the Future, by Andrea Bandoni, explores leaders from the past (including some women), who both worked in design and were environmentally and ethically minded.
A Life’s Design, Charles Harrison — one of America’s first African American pro designer and design executives — designed 100s of products for Sears including many well known ones. I wrote a twitter thread about him recently.
I’ve been thinking of doing a weekly thread about an underrepresented design hero, like the one I did for Harrison. Interested in working together on something like that? Let me know.