The author covers the highlights of just about everything involved in choosing a site and buying or building a house -- and in case you're apt to flounder, he reinforces the info with numbered/lettered outlines. All types of selection, architectural, maintenance, financial, and contractual dilemmas are investigated and the author's dogged attention to possible eventualities usually pays off. Mr. Reiner, however, might not be everyone's choice as a mentor -- must the house always be set away from trees so that you ""may not be bothered by masses of fallen buds. . . and masses of fallen leaves""? But it is pleasant to note that he is duly critical of fads like cathedral ceilings (""a waste of space"" and they make a small room look as if it's ""at the bottom of a well""). With checklists and illustrative drawings -- a practical guide.