This book is phenomenally wise, useful, easy to read, and plain inspiring. I picked it up this morning intending to get back to it tonight and ended up not putting it down at all.
I have bought and read a number of underground building books as well as log cabin books, and would sort them into three categories:
A Expensive log homes for the really rich
B Moderate earth-covered (not quite underground) homes for the middle
C This book, for those who truly want to integrate innovation and low cost with deep Earth comfort and resilience and all the good stuff that goes with it.
This book, in short, is in a class of its own. Most will notice that it was first offered in 1978. As the USA goes through a major financial crisis that proves nothing has changed–Wall Street and the two “parties” it has bought down to their lost souls are still here, still looting the commonwealth–this book proves that it is timeless.
There is indeed a great deal of land across this great country where one can still afford to “dig in,” and this could not be a better time to be thinking about renting what you have now in the close in fragile areas, and setting up alternative housing with adjacent land for a basic Life Garden.
As I went through each chapter I found the list of materials, the prices, the diagrams, and the text all coherent, concise, and totally “on target.” Black and white photographs throughout, and a handful of color photographs in the middle, round the book out.
The book ends by discreetly recommending a tape series on design as the key element for success, and one that professional architects generally overlook (as we are all learning, the “experts” in finance and other areas are really “credentialed” but NOT experts).
I LIKE THIS BOOK. As an afterthought, it is recommended by just about every major alternative living, green energy, and sanity outpost (Vermont, Oregon, Washington State) reviewer. This book is a “good deal” and inspiring to boot.