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The Architectural Guidebook to New York City Paperback – August 8, 2002


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The Architectural Guidebook to New York City + The Architecture of New York City: Histories and Views of Important Structures, Sites, and Symbols + New York: 15 Walking Tours, An Architectural Guide to the Metropolis
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

"Right from the start, the reader will realize that he is undergoing the expert ministrations of a man who understands New York and its infinite variety of constructions as few others do. . . . In fact, this is a book that does not chart the usual walking tours but outlines the esthetics that one might look for in the course of a Manhattan amble. Each item is its own little essay, written with as much attention to the literate architecture of his wordage as to the structural architecture of what he is looking at. He can put things together as you may never have thought to. . . . There was something that was news to me on almost every page, if not in fact then at least in some new angle of observation. . . . If there is anything wrong with this book, it is that it will absorb you in reading when you might be out looking."

--Richard F. Shepard, The New York Chronicle

Revised, Updated, and Expanded

This brand new edition of the popular Architectural Guidebook to New York City details, the most recent changes to Manhattan's built environment, including modifications that reflect post September 11. Hundreds of entries are thoughtfully presented in the context of the architectural, historical, and cultural settings.

Author Francis Morrone is a lecturer and tour leader for the Municipal Art Society of New York, a nonprofit civic organization founded in 1893. His writings on architecture and New York history appear in The New Criterion, the City Journal, and other publications. He can be contacted through his World Wide Web site at http://home.sprynet.com/sprynet/fmorrone, where updates and corrections to the present book will be regularly posted.

Photographer James Iska, whose architectural photography has been exhibited all over the world and whose work has appeared in the Washington Post, the Financial Times, the Chicago Sun Times adn the Chicago Tribune, is currently on the staff of the Art Institute of Chicago.

About the Author

Francis Morrone has authored other books on Architecture, such as The Architectural Guidebook to New York City, and An Architcural Guidebook to Philadelphia. He lhas lived for tweny-some years in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn.

James Iska, wose work has been exhibited all over the world and has apeared in the Washington Post, Financial Times, Chicago Sun-TImes, and Chicago Tribune, is currently on the staff of the Art Institute of Chicago.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Gibbs Smith; Revised & updated edition (August 8, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1586852116
  • ISBN-13: 978-1586852115
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #327,638 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Ritter on July 7, 2000
Format: Paperback
The most obvious reason to replace the AIA Guide with this book is size. Dealing with only one borough enables the author to go into more detail while reducing the size of the book. The AIA Guide is about half the size of a large yellow pages. The Architectural Guidebook to NYC is about the size of an average novel. That makes a big difference when you're stuffing it into your backpack or purse for a trip on subway or foot.
The more extensive entries are very welcome. In Union Square with this book and a view of the surrounding buildings, I was able to spend a pleasant and informative hour on a park bench, for free. That's a better bargain than the Staten Island Ferry.
Morrone keeps the architect's jargon to a minimum and knows his subject well. The historical insights and views on clashing aesthetics were skillfully presented. He pointed out a couple of museums of very high caliber that I wasn't even aware of. A book like this is a perfect jumping off point for thousands of topics, from neighborhoods to cultures to politics to construction.
I would encourage him to write similar books on the other buroughs, or better yet, an even more detailed work on each of the neighborhoods of Manhattan: each of them has at least a thousand buildings worth writing about.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By "rustichut" on July 26, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book is really good and best used if you have a fair amount of time to wander around New York. It is like trailing through the city with a friend who has lived there for a long time; Marrone has great excursive lengthy interesting descriptions of a number of buildngs, and that's great. The problem is that each chapter has its own tiny map, and they are never put together in a larger overall map anywhere, making navigation difficult. If you have a lot of time, and want to do just a few buidings per day, that's fine. If you want to storm through NYC and see as much as possible in a limited amount of time, if is difficult.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 29, 2002
Format: Paperback
I was a bit disapointed by this book. There is information on a lot of NY buildings, but the information does not always concern architecture and is usually very limited. Gives you an impression of all there is to see, but does not do much more than that. Photographs are not impressive. Much more intersting is The Architecture of New York City, by Donald Martin Reynolds.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Barbara Magalnick on April 2, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Although I was looking forward to receiving my copy of the Architectural Guidebook to New York City, I was stunned to find that the photographs taken for this guidebook make New York look like nineteenth-century London. I wonder whether the misguided photographer James Iska thought he was producing some romanticized notion of New York that the publishers out in Utah felt was artistic. It is maddening. In an architectural guidebook, one should be able to see the buildings, not to mention as many details as possible. Some of the buildings can barely be made out at all, much less any details. In many cases, one gets only the impression of a monolith rising in the air. Very poor photography. The Seagram building, which I studied in a course, cannot be discerned differentiating from many other edifices for the darkness of the photo, as is the general situation here. And by the way, although the text and photos have an updated 2002 copyright, most of the photos look as if they were taken in the 1950s and are woefully out of date, as can be discerned in some photos by the cars and bystanders. In addition, some of the buildings have been redesigned since these photos (Morgan Library for example), Bowery Bank no longer exists (for many years in fact), and all in all, I find this book a huge disappointment. I wish I had ordered the latest edition of the AIA book, which is excellent.
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