This book truly lives up to its cover credits and description of contents:- "...the most practical and beautifully illustrated book on earth building ever published.? ?An inspiring vision and practical guide..."
The step-by-step instructions for creating cob structures are easy to follow, practical and a pleasure to read. A deep insight and wisdom flows through the words that is both uplifting and inspiring. It reminds the reader that they, and the structures they build, have a place in Nature and that building with natural substances obeys certain rhythms and laws. Observing these leads to harmonious results and can be fun.
The effect of reading this book is similar to that of reading Christopher Alexander (Pattern Language/Timeless Way of Building). His influence is apparent, and present in some of the quotes.
The detailed illustrations and photographs are clear and graphic, adding visual detail to the text that complements the instructions perfectly, making it easy for even a complete beginner to understand and follow.
The sections include information on natural finishes, lime plasters, renders, washes, earthen plasters, home made clay and casein paints with essential basic information, scientific facts plus questions and answers.
There is also very practical 'how-to' instructions, text and ideas with finely thought out facts and legalities. An interview with a specialist architect is particularly interesting and gives advice on constructing cob buildings which comply with modern building standards. The guidance on restoring and repairing old cob structures details everything from how to make cob blocks, to typical problems you may find.
Comprehensive, useful and helpful at a time when many old buildings are being renovated, and complete with a detailed list of resources and suppliers, this is an essential book for anyone involved with or interested in cob building.