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am 29. November 2002
I bought the first edition of this book years ago and what attracted me to it was the very accessible way it was produced, it just looked so inviting. Francis Ching writes about technical matters in a simple straightforward style and Cassandra Adams illustrations are a joy to look at. She produced the entire book (except for the bar-code) by hand, cover, title page, contents, index and drew over a thousand technical illustrations and even hand wrote the detailed captions. This latest updated edition uses the same illustrations but the text is now typeset in a typeface (Tecton, I think) very similar to her handwritten style.
As other reviewers have said this is not a book for the DIY handyman but a guide to construction basics, chapters deal with the site, the building, foundations, floors, walls, roofs, moisture protection, doors and windows, finish work, mechanical and electrical, materials. The thirty-two page Appendix gives addition technical information, followed by a ten page index.
I do have one very minor criticism of this latest edition though, for some odd reason the publishers have decided to print all the illustrations in a tint of black (rather than solid black) which detracts them from their original beauty. However this will not stop readers from enjoying and learning from a unique looking book that can hardly be improved on. A masterpiece.
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am 6. Mai 2008
I read this book in library when I was studying in University of Southern California in Los Angeles and was looking for a book on architecture in real world. I loved it, I bought it many years later simply because I loved to have it in my book collection. It turned out to be a very good buy. The illustrations are great! Ching has a great talent to simplify complicated issues and make them very easy to understand.

Gang Chen, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Author of "Architectural Practice Simplified," "LEED GA Exam Guide," "Planting Design Illustrated," and other books on various LEED exams, architecture, and landscape architecture
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