This is our 4th book report as we continue to add exceptional books to the office library. The report covers the books that inspire and engage us, these are the books that get us up in the morning ready to save the world from ugly. Enjoy…

Suyama A Complex Serenity, $75.00
Published by University of Washington Press, Seattle & London, 2011
Starting with George Suyama’s early design influences, this handsome book reveals a history of sacred spaces in the Pacific Northwest. Each page proceeds to reveal a private look at Suyama’s residential projects throughout the region. The images do a remarkable job communicating the design discipline integral to Suyama’s work, at the same time the presentation of lifestyles liberates and inspires. Most pleasing about the book is the sense of harmony and balance shared by each page.

Mutabor, Lingua Universalis (Global Wordless Understanding), $18.95
Published by Die Gestalten Verlag, Berlin – London, 2004
The Mutabor book series transformed the way we think about graphic design. These are paradigm shifting manuals about communicating through symbols and icons and they belong on every designer’s desk. The concepts and ideas bring a straight-forward sophistication to graphic design, best of all the sharp-shooters at Mutabor have created a language that spans most spoken languages, cultures and countries. Lingua Universalis, the second of the series, covers more process and technique behind the masterful graphic language. We’re big fans.

2009 International Residential Code, $94.85
Published by the International Code Council, U.S.A., 2009
For a tome of this magnitude, the IRC 2009 lacks most characteristics of good prose. The plot is dull (almost non-existent really), the lifeless characters meander in and out of chapters like ghosts and the ending is painfully uneventful. The climax, which occurs in chapter 18 –Chimneys and Vents, dwindles the already weak story-line down to <spoiler alert> a table of combustible clearances… yawn. This one’s a sleeper folks.

Matter in the Floating World, $40.00
Published by Princeton Architectural Press, New York, 2011
This delicious book gives a peak into Japanese design culture and covers 20 of the most notable designers of the current time. The content keeps a tight balance between the poetry of design and the technicalities of structure. Organized into four concepts (Lightness, Atmosphere, Flow and Emergence) the book covers everything from industrial design to museum design. It becomes very evident throughout the pages that Japanese designers are well ahead of the game.

Pamphlet Architecture 31: New Haiti Villages, $19.95
Published by Princeton Architectural Press, New York, 2010
This intelligent concept by Steven Holl takes the format of a simple pamphlet and produces something much more compelling than just clever ideas and well composed images. It is rather, a very clearly thought-out marketing pitch to the wealthy sponsors of the world. Pamphlet 31 documents the history and culture of Haiti, then goes on to tackle the technical solutions of housing the one-million homeless Haitians resulting from the devastating earthquake on January 12th of 2010. The text lays it all out there, 10 sponsors are being sought out to donate $530,000 a piece to fund the new infrastructure. Ka-pow, we admire the straight-forwardness.

Feltron 2010 Annual Report, $25.00
Printed by Datagraphics, New York, 2010
Nicholas Felton is redefining the art of visual data. The sixth annual report to date, this 2010 version focuses on the life of Felton’s father. The pages illustrate everything from school report cards, to how many photos of him were taken with his vices (explained as pipes, cigarettes, beer and wine) and includes an atlas of every place he ever visited. It is perhaps the most beautiful recording of one’s life that we’ve ever seen and an extraordinary tribute to a father.

Don’t be shy about hitting that comments button to let us know of your favorite books at the moment.
Cheers from team BUILD