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Architecture Reads on Google Books

Far be it from me to suggest you spend your spare computer time reading—those R. Kelly vids are certainly not going to watch themselves—but after a quick advanced search on Google Books, it turns out there are a handful of tomes the design-minded reader might do well to peruse. Best of all, you can read full versions of the text, and they range in subject from a Richard Neutra bio to the charms of loft living to the best in 20th century Dutch architecture. Read on.

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Richard Neutra and the Search for Modern Architecture is a good bet for a Neutra biography. A drawback on this one is that many of the copyrighted images aren't included in the text, so you'll want to augment your reading with a look at many of Neutra's projects here.

For a real look back into the annals of design lit, try the first issue of Architectural Record from 1891. Not much modernism, I fear, but an interesting glimpse at the origins of the architectural press.

To get a nice historical take on one of the most architecturally minded nations on the planet, have a look at Twentieth Century Architecture in the Netherlands. It's just shy of 200 pages but serves as a solid primer on Dutch design.

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Finally, for a more contemporary look at the design world, Lofts: A Style of Living from 2004 offers a full-color, image rich tour of lofts all over the world. This one runs the gamut of styles, but as a source of inspiration for what to do with an open industrial space, it's quite handy. And best of all, it's free.

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