WoodCentral's Book Reviews
A House On The Water

A House On The Water
by Robert W. Knight

Taunton Press: 2003
Hardcover, 218 pp., $34.95
ISBN 1-56158-607-2

     I can think of no better way to describe the homes presented in this full-color coffee table book, than to quote from the words on the inner flyleaf: "Living at the water's edge…is almost like owning a little piece of infiinity."
     This is an architecture of vistas. Twenty-four homes are beautifully photographed in their natural settings at seaside, lakeside and riverside, and it is all about The View. Whether they hug a shoreline, stand in the trees, or rest precariously along an edge, these homes are open to their surroundings, some with wide porches, open pass-throughs, and wide use of glass or transitional spaces that serve to protect and shelter from severe weather. Many homes show entry ways as far out as the garden gate that open a path, or axis, directly through the house to the water, with the organizational focus of the architecture structured around that pathway.
     Each home is represented by a floorplan and a site plan, with discussion of interior details ranging from the obvious (stairways and skylights) to the arcane ("The interior wall finish in this home is tinted plaster topped with bowling alley wax, which produces an occasional 'flash' of color in the wall that gives it some life.")
     Full of ideas for contractors, remodelers and anyone considering building a home near the water, this collection of homes is a book of dreams brought to life.

. . . Barb Siddiqui