While there are hundreds of books on all aspects of design, from color to type to visual concepts, three books stand out for capturing important basics. No fluff, just concise and effective at illuminating concepts to make you think differently about aspects of design that are easily taken for granted.
Before & After, by John McWade (Peachpit Press, 2003)
John McWade makes design and production look so easy. Along with his examples of great design solutions, he explains printing requirements and suggests design approaches that allow you to deal with printing limitations.
Before and After Graphics for Business, by John McWade (Peachpit Press, 2005)
Professional Design Techniques with Adobe Creative Suite 3, by Scott Citron (Adobe ...