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Paperback A Place of My Own : The Architecture of Daydreams Book

ISBN: 0143114743

ISBN13: 9780143114741

A Place of My Own : The Architecture of Daydreams

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good*

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Book Overview

A captivating personal inquiry into the art of architecture, the craft of building, and the meaning of modern work "A room of one's own: Is there anybody who hasn't at one time or another wished for such a place, hasn't turned those soft words over until they'd assumed a habitable shape?" When Michael Pollan decided to plant a garden, the result was the acclaimed bestseller Second Nature . In A Place of My Own, he turns his sharp insight to the craft...

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

An intimate tour of a writer's most sacred place: the house of their dreams

I was astonished to see that there are *any* less than stellar reviews for this book, so let me speak in defense of Michael Pollan's sophomore effort: You Must Read This Book! For those who loved The Omnivore's Dilemma, this book describes the process by which the cradle of that great work was itself brought to life. As a person married to an author, and as a person who himself writes more than the average American, Pollan's process of articulating his own dreams (and fears) for his own writing house literally brought tears to my eyes, so profound his subject and so universal its truths. It is a brilliant synthesis of abstract and concrete--the construction of a physical space *so that* greater mental heights can be imagined and obtained. For those who celebrate the way that Pollan has helped us restore some measure of our own humanity by helping us reconnect with what is true about food (and by learning how to avoid what is false about edible food-like substances), let only those who are truly roofless cast the first stone against this book! For the rest of us, whether we own, rent, or live more transiently in some sheltering construct, this book teaches the truly multi-dimensional ways that dwellings come to be, and how the manifold relationships that condense into built forms continue to express those relationships, even to those who are not yet born. For those who love Pollan's ways with words, this book is full of fridge-worthy sentences and page-worthy paragraphs. For those who enjoyed meeting Joel Salatin in "Part III: Grass" of the Omnivore's Dilemma, in this book we meet the prototype from the building trade, Joe Benney. Indeed, I'd be willing to bet that without Joe's training in the manual arts, Michael would never have made it past the first handshake with Mr. Salatin of Polyface farms. For those who complain "this book is nothing new", fooey. Yes it was first published more than a decade ago, but as a book I had not read, it was new to me. The new paperback format is far more friendly to me and my traveling lifestyle. And the new preface provides an opportunity for Pollan to complete some factual and cultural arcs that were anticipated by the foundations he laid in 1997. (In that way, every finished building is really the start of a new, unimagined next building.) So...I loved it, and I suspect that if you have ever dreamed about building a place for your own dreams, you will love it, too!


While some rave about the prose of Anne Rice and Michael Ondaatje, I rave about Michael Pollan! In A Place of My Own, Pollan has crafted a beautifully written book laced with intelligence, humility and humor. Attempting to escape his own "mid-life crisis," Pollan decides to build a cabin in the woods--a place where he can work undisturbed that also serves as a "shelter for daydreams." During his 2 1/2 years of building, Pollan comes to reflect on many things such as the meaning of "work" in our highly technological society, the sacrifice and celebration of nature and the borders between nature and culture. In the end, Pollan comes to the conclusion that there really is no clear division between matters of the material world and those of the spirit. A warm, witty and wise story told in prose as crystal clear as a bright winter's day. I'd gladly give it ten stars if I could.

Sheer poetry.

This book, much like his earlier "Second Nature" is a must for anyone who appreciates profound thoughts about gardening, homes, and the space in which we live. He crafts his words as well as he does his home and garden. Read these books and you will never think about homes and gardens in the same way again. Philosophical, poetical, and profound.

Well-built book; walk in and sit down

If you've never built a house, you'll love this book. If you've built over 500 of them, as I have, you'll love this book for its fine craftsmanship, and you'll wish you could have helped on the construction of Pollan's first owner-built home. Read the book, and it's almost as good as being there. Afterwards, you'll want to build a clean, well-lighted place of your own.
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