If you are only looking for the Taegeuk pattern set , I recommend Master Cho's text, "The Complete Taegeuk Hyung", available through his website at http://www.aimaa.com/ (The abbreviation is for Action International Martial Arts Association.) While that site also has a wealth of other print publications and videos, you might find it less expensive through either Amazon (amazon.com) or Barnes and Noble (bn.com). It may also be available through Century Martial Arts (www.centuryfitness.com).
If you're only looking for the Palgue pattern set , I would first
suggest purchasing volume 1 of Kim Jeong-Rok's three-volume set mentioned
above. If that is unavailable or you'd like to try something else, I recommend
Richard Chun's "Tae Kwon Do: The Korean Martial Art". This is a more expensive
book for it covers much more than just the Palgue patterns. However, it
is a very sturdy hardcover and well worth the price if you don't have a
similar all-in-one source for beginners. It contains chapters on basic
movements, stances, technique and practical self-defense situations among
others. He also has a second volume, "Advancing In Taekwondo", of similar
quality and expense that covers the WTF black belt patterns. You may purchase
either of these (at $65.00 each) directly from him at:
Dr. Richard Chun
United States Taekwondo Association
220 East 86th Street
New York, NY 10028
Tel: (212) 772-8918
Or, it may still be available through Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com.
If you study the ITF (Chon-Ji) patterns , my highest recommendation goes to Master Hee Il Cho's three volume set, "The Complete Tae Kwon Do Hyung". These are available through his own Action International Martial Arts Association web site (www.aimaa.com) . While you're there, you might also wish to take a closer look at the other quality print publications and videos he offers. The only drawback to this set is that it covers only the "original" 20 hyungs (Chon-Ji through Tong-Il), but does not cover the "new" patterrns. (i.e. Eui-Am, Ju-Che, etc.) I am not aware of any print publication that demonstrates these newer forms. As I've mentioned for the recommendations above, these too may be available through Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com
Another excellent book on the ITF patterns is Keith D. Yates' "Complete Book of Taekwondo Forms". This book covers all the patterns up to 4th Dan and also includes some patterns of Japanese origin like Bassai (Bal-Sek) and Tekki (Chul-Gi). Like the recommendations above, this text is full photographs and step-diagrams that make learning the patterns a breeze. (Perfecting them, however, requires dedication, a little pain, and a lot of hard work!) This book can be ordered at his site (a-kato.org) or through one of the aforementioned booksellers.
Should you be looking for books in any other category of martial arts -- whether it be philosophy or weapons, Kung-Fu or Aikido -- I recommend looking over Asian World Of Martial Arts' selection of books. They have one of the largest book catalogs I've seen. Their web site is http://www.awma.com/."
A quick note on book-hunting, in general...
In addition to the larger online booksellers that I've mentioned above, there are two sites that might make searching for a hard-to-find book a bit easier. Best Book Buys is an online service that searches twelve different online retailers to find the book you're looking for at the best possible price. Also, My Simon is an excellent price-comparison tool that lets you browse a wide variety of bookstores at once.