I just received the 1949-59 volume of "LeMans: The Official History of the World's Greatest Motor Race" -- a series being written by Quentin Spurring and licensed by the ACO. After looking at this one, I will soon be buying the 1960-69 and 1970-79 volumes, which are also currently available. Other decades are under production.
Whether you are a fan of racing history or a car buff, this book is for you! Every race is covered in detail, and stats are given for every car and driver. Each car model that raced is given a photo (or several) and at least a few paragraphs -- even if it lasted only a few laps or less. Besides plenty of coverage of Ferrari, Porsche and Peugeot, we see Talbot Lago, Panhard, early Lotus efforts, and the first Aston Martin to finally win LM. Rather than a list of technical specs, we get a description of the hurdles each team overcame simply to reach the start -- and the problems that kept so many from finishing. The cars are portrayed wonderfully, but the focus is on the human side of this great race. We read about Luigi Chinetti and Briggs Cunningham trying to capture glory, and of course the horrendous wreck in 55 that caused the track to be rebuilt only six years after its post-war reconstruction. We get beautiful reproductions of posters and program covers and tons of photos throughout.
These books are reasonably priced, and the quality and presentation are first-rate. The LM24h is probably the most significant automotive race in history, and these books capture the essence of it. They belong on every race fan's shelf.