The Most Beautiful House in the World

  • Viking, 1989
    Bestseller, QSPELL Literary Prize for non-fiction.

    While I was writing , my wife and I were building our own house, and that became the subject of this book. It is less about pounding nails and sawing wood, than a meditation on architecture itself: how we make places to live in. The construction project began as a workshed, and through a series of accidents the structure gradually evolved into a full-fledged house. In tracing this evolution, I touch on matters both theoretical and practical, exploring the origins of humble barns, the ritualistic roots of classical architecture, the connections between dress and habitation, and between architecture and gastronomy. Ultimately, this is about making a place, “where it would be safe to dream.”