If you are just starting out in the home design process, you may find this book to be the single most valuable resource available. My wife and I read dozens of home design books and they were all worthless. Seriously! Even the books that get great reviews on Amazon were of no use to us since we are not building an ultra-contemporary eye-sore on the left coast.
Mr. Hirsch's book is a refreshing reminder of what home design is all about. You will read this book and learn something. With that, you'll be able to go to an architect and not sound like a clueless fool. This book will, in some ways, provide an education in design so you can convey a better sense of what you would like in your new home to your designer or architect. I can honestly say that we would be afraid to tell a local architect about any of the other books we have read during our design journey but this book is an exception. It is very well written.
This is a simple book to read but it's suggestions and comments are profound and inspiring. You can't go wrong with this one.