A HOUSE OF ONE'S OWN

: AN ARCHITECT'S GUIDE TO DESIGNING THE HOUSE OF YOUR DREAMS

An architect and his writer wife (Blooming, 1981 and Ivy Days, 1984) collaborate on this lyrical, likeable tale of the creation of Wind Whistle, their Minnesota summer getaway—and of the joys of the house-building process in general. A modernist architect marries a clutter-addicted Victoriana buff and resolves to build her a perfect dream house. Sounds like the plot of a sit-com, but this was real life, frighteningly enough, for Stageberg and Toth in the early eighties. Surprisingly, the collaboration proved fruitful and the marriage survived intact as Stageberg managed, after the usual series of discarded drafts, to combine airy, open rooms with a mile or so of built-in bookcases and come up with a graceful, intergrated whole. The key lay in in knowing when to back off: Toth's decision to let her husband design the country house's exterior on his own while he gave in on staining the ceilings sky-blue resulted in a custom-designed retreat so charming and unique that both now find it difficult to leave. In this account, Toth's rhapsodies over the delights of home ownership alternate with Stageberg's informative comments on the architect's point of view ('Always remember that the architect needs you, the client, to realize his vision.'). Drawing on decades of experience custom- designing domeciles for his Minneapolis firm, Stageberg Partners, Inc., he also offers down-to-earth advice on hiring, working with and even firing an architect while simultaneously infecting the reader with his obvious enthusiasm for the craft. Dangerously seductive—those without the house-building bug will catch

Pub Date: May 1, 1991

ISBN: 0-517-58214-7

Page Count: 192

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1991

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NUTCRACKER

This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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