Get Green with Style Blog

Green Book Review – The Complete Idiot’s Guide

by Hilary Sopata, LEED AP

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Green Building and Remodeling
Written by John Barrows and Lisa Iannucci

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Green Building and Remodeling attracted my attention immediately because of the U.S. Green Building Council LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) logo on the front cover.  Since both Michelle Banks Watt and I are LEED Accredited Professionals, I thought this book would be a great “official” source for information for us.  It is a great source and does include rating system checklists from both the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and USGBC LEED in the appendices although I suspect that these checklists are regularly updated so check with the organizations themselves for the most up-to-date information. 

Highlights of this book include a diagram on How Homes Become Green near the front of the book, easy-read informational boxes on many pages, and, “The Least You Need to Know,” bullet-pointed summaries at the end of each chapter.  Overall Barrows and Iannucci cover the ins and outs of green homes including both inside and outside.  As the title suggests, this book is for green beginners although it does creep into the intermediate realm of green design, too.

This book reads more like a textbook with a lot of words and few pictures.  The authors convey the message in an easy to read and easy to understand fashion.  The materials they promote would not be considered fantastic according to green fanatics, but they are better than traditional choices.  The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Green Building and Remodeling is a wonderful choice for you if you are looking to build a standard suburban home but want to do it with a little more of a conscience. 

Barrows, John and Iannucci, Lisa (2009). The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Green Building and Remodeling  (1st ed.). Alpha Books by Penguin Group (USA) Inc.. ISBN 978-1-59257-828-3


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