The Phaidon Archive Of Graphic Design is, according to its publisher, "an unparalleled resource of the world's very best specimens of graphic design." Not a book in the traditional sense (though it does include a bound index), the Archive is a box containing 500 loose cards, each of which represents a key example of graphic design from the past 500 years. Each card contains a full-page reproduction on one side, with a short essay and other illustrations on the reverse.
As the Archive weighs 13kg, it's supplied with removable handles. There are several excellent narrative histories of graphic design (Meggs' History Of Graphic Design, Graphic Design: A New History, and Graphic Design Before Graphic Designers), though the Archive is a unique and comprehensive collection of iconic graphic designs.