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I just posted this review to Amazon.com (which means they own it now). It may hurt my reviewer rank (8877) more than it helps. I realize that it's more about me than it is about the book and that readers may not find it all that useful in deciding whether or not they'd like to read the book.

Four out of five stars.

Dangerously Inspiring

Reviewer: KMO from Berryville, AR United States

I have not harbored any life-long ambition to build my own home, but now, about a year after reading "A Place of My Own," I find myself building a house. It's not all Michael Pollan's fault, but I'm not letting him completely off the hook either. Michael Pollan loves words and spends the majority of his time in the world of words and abstractions. The tale of his inexplicable desire to create something as real-world as a building with his own hands makes for a very seductive invitation into that world for someone who feels most at home in the realm of the abstract but nurtures a growing admiration for the so-called "blue collar" folks whose knowledge and expertise reside in their strong and weathered hands as much as it does in their noggins.

While the book in no way operates on the level of a "how-to" manual, now that I've started down that owner-builder road I'm encountering landmarks familiar to me from reading "A Place of My Own," like the tension-bordering-on-hostility that exists between architects, those artisans of the abstract, and builders, who inherit the sometimes unenviable task of turning fanciful "funny-paper" blue-prints into tangible structures of concrete, wood, and glass.

link: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0385319908/crealm


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jan. 24th, 2004 07:17 pm (UTC)
my father, brother, and i built our home when i was 15. my dad wanted to include a lot of solar assisted elements in the house. he chose a design that fit the needs of the solar assist components he wanted, and when he got the plans, he found that they were full of impracticalities... many of them required major rework. (for example: the stairwells were only 24 inches wide.) by the time we got the house closed in, my dad was using the prints as a doormat.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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