Confessions of a Country Architect

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9781593730611: Confessions of a Country Architect

After graduating from the Yale School of Architecture, Don Metz decided to take up a small country practice in lieu of seeking success with a popular commercial firm. His choice led to personal and philosophical fulfillment, as well as recognition as a maverick architect who could build honest, reliable, and sustainable homes. It only followed that he would go on to write several books on architecture. Metz is also a novelist, and in Confessions of a Country Architect, he adroitly blends his writer's craft with his years in architecture to detail a touching and waggish memoir of his career. With warm wry humor and slapstick pathos reminiscent of James Herriot's All Creature's Great and Small, the feisty flatlander modestly recounts the ever-challenging and often-comical life of a country architect. A builder in his own right, Metz is also a practical -- but always creative and problem-solving -- hands-on architect. From his early years working with a weapons-grade jackhammer in a quarry to the construction of an earth-sheltered house, Metz details the panoply of noble goals and eccentric whims of his diverse clientele. Whether you are ready to summon up the courage to build a house, or content with an armchair with a view, Confessions provides a delightful account of the author's adventures as he navigates the awkward, intractable, and hilariously messy job of building dreams.

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About the Author:

A graduate of the Yale School of Architecture, Don Metz is a pioneer in the field of green architecture, including four decades of residential work throughout New England. He is the author of several books on architecture as well as two novels, Catamount Bridge and King of the Mountain. This book delivers an architect/writer's insights into the foibles and triumphs inherent in the close and sometimes perilous relationships between architects, builders and their clients.

Review:

"This retrospect on forty years of house design shows as much
care in its narration as its author has applied to his superb
architecture. Don Metz's latest book is remarkable for its
compassion, enthusiasm, joy, pathos, appreciation of character,
and, crucially, humor. Confessions of a Country Architect is a home,
at once quiet and magisterial, for the reader's spirit."

"Anyone who has built or renovated a house -- or who is thinking
about doing it -- should read this book. Don Metz puts you in
the middle of things, honestly and directly. We know the scent
of the land, the feel of the construction site, and we experience
the variety of emotions that appear when people set about
changing raw materials into livable dreams."

"From hilarious to poignant and back again, Don Metz guides the
reader through a lifetime of intriguing experiences and characters,
reinforcing our belief that residential architecture is often more about
being a psychiatrist than designing and building. This book is a great
mix of Reality TV and musings on the philosophical underpinnings
of both the structure of buildings and the fabric human existence."

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