Books are a valuable source of information for any profession – even more so for architects. With innumerable books available to download legally, there is no excuse for not reading architecture books. Whether you are an architect, a current or future architecture student, or just someone with a passion for architecture, and if you checked our previous list of architecture books you should read, here are more books (in no particular order) that will be a welcome addition to your library.

Best Architecture Books:

1. Form, Space, and Order by Francis D.K. Ching

Architecture Books

Courtesy Of Francis D. K. Ching

This beautifully illustrated book by D.K Ching encourages critical thought in designing architectural spaces. Being used for over 40 years, Form, Space, and Order are used as the introduction to basic architectural vocabulary. It comes as no surprise that architecture schools all around the world are recommending this book to their students.

2. The Architecture Reference and Specification Book: Everything Architects need to know Every day by Julia McMorrough

Courtesy Of Julia McMorrough

With a  majority of standard books coming with overwhelming details, The Architecture Reference and Specification Book contains vital information in a format small enough to carry around. It streamlines the data provided in standard books and includes the most requested and indispensable architectural data.

3. A Field Guide to American Houses: The Definitive Guide to Identifying and Understanding America’s Domestic Architecture by Virginia Savage McAlester

Courtesy Of Virginia Savage McAlester

A Field Guide to American Homes is a book that makes all the periods of domestic Architecture in America, easily identifiable. Covering more than 50 styles, this book is invaluable to architects, tourists, house buyers, and architecture enthusiasts.
The illustrations in the book make it pleasing to the eye and informative.

4.The Future of Architecture in a 100 Buildings

Courtesy Of Marc Kushner’s founder and practicing architect draws on his unique experience in social media and architecture to identify 100 buildings that are representative of the future.

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5. Architecture A World History

Courtesy Of Daniel Borden, Jerzy Elzanowski, Joni Taylor, Stephanie Tuerk

Beautifully illustrated, this architecture book is a gift for an enthusiast. This pocket-sized book is filled with significant movements in architecture as well as crisp biographies of great architects. It also explores the evolution of the industry and of architectural masterpieces.

6. Ten Books on Architecture by Vitruvius

Courtesy Of Vitruvius

Vitruvius has been of great influence in the world of architecture. For hundreds of years, the instructions in his Ten Books on Architecture were followed to the dot. His influence can be seen in numerous buildings and this book has been important in the creation of many architectural masterpieces.

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7. ArchiDoodle by Steve Bowkett

Courtesy Of Steve Bowkett

Just as the name suggests, this book is a fun and interactive way to learn about architecture. With numerous challenges for the user –  from designing a skyscraper to creating a Constructivist monument, this is an amazing book for learning about architecture while having fun.

8. Understanding Architecture: Its Elements, History, and Meaning by Leland M Roth and Amanda C Roth Clark

Courtesy Of Leland M. Roth, Amanda C. Roth Clark


This intriguing and engaging book includes architectural styles from all over the world. It examines the meaning, structure, function of architecture in ways that are accessible and interesting.

9. Brunelleschi’s Dome: How a Renaissance Genius Reinvented Architecture by Ross King

Courtesy Of Ross King

Written as a tribute to the man who built a dome and changed the way Architecture was viewed, this book is about how Brunelleschi reinvented Architecture. Engineering the perfect placement of brick and stone, hoists and cranes to carry 70 million pounds, hundreds of feet in the air, he also designed the routines and platform of workers. His planning was so precise, that only one man died during the decades of construction.

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10. Architecture: Residential Drafting and Design by Clois E. Kicklighter Ed. D., W. Scott Thomas

Courtesy Of Clois E. Kicklighter Ed. D., W. Scott Thomas

This provides comprehensive information on architectural designs, drafting methods, construction principles, and methods. It helps new students to easily learn different and unique ways of drafting as well as designing sustainably, through a design-building process.

11. The Language of Architecture: 26 Principles every Architect should know by Andrea Simitch, Val Warke

Courtesy Of Andrea Simitch, Val Warke

Based on 26 building blocks of Architecture, this book is a comprehensive learning tool. Starting from the basics and moving on to complex architectural designs, The Language of Architecture is definitely a go-to book for reference.

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12. The New Old House: Historic & Modern Architecture Combined by Marc Kristal

Courtesy Of Marc Kristal

An interesting perspective on timeless houses, which have been revamped and used for other purposes, The New Old House traces the inventive methods used by architects to revitalize old buildings.

13. St. Petersburg: Architecture of the Tsars by Dmitri O. Shvidkovsky

Courtesy Of Dmitri O. Shvidkovsky

It chronicles the history of city planning and construction of St. Petersburg under the Russian Tsars. It is compiled with pictures, illustrations, and detailed descriptions of the architecture of St. Petersburg.

14. Dictionary of Architecture and Construction by Cyril M. Harris

Courtesy Of Cyril M. Harris

Updated and revised, this is a comprehensive collection of architectural terms – with 25,000 definitions, 2,500 illustrations. This is the best dictionary for an architect and one of the must-have architecture books.

15. Architecture: From Prehistory to Postmodernity by Marvin Trachtenberg, Isabelle Hyman

Courtesy Of Marvin Trachtenberg, Isabelle Hyman

This book depicts the various periods of architecture and illuminates the aesthetical, social, and intellectual difference in the historical trends

16. A Visual Dictionary of Architecture by Francis D K Ching

Courtesy Of Francis D. K. Ching

It is a concise dictionary of illustrations and hand-rendered drawings of numerous architectural definitions.

17. Architecture in Wood: A World History

Courtesy Of Will Pryce

Written by a photographer, who trained as an architect, this book beautifully conveys the excitement of seeing timber architecture.

18. Sustainable Design: A Critical Guide

Courtesy Of David Bergman

Sustainable Design is a comprehensive guide to reducing energy and carbon footprints and creating structures that are environmentally responsible.

19. World Architecture: The Masterworks by Will Pryce

Courtesy Of Will Pryce

With over 350 photographs showcasing the finest buildings of the world, this is one of the best architecture books.

20. Modern Architecture Since 1900 by William J R Curtis

Courtesy Of William J.R. Curtis

This contemporary classic combines a concise and clear historical outline with masterly interpretation.

21. A Global History of Architecture by Mark M. Jarzombek, Vikramaditya Prakash

Courtesy Of Mark M. Jarzombek, Vikramaditya Prakash

This book differs from the standard architecture books, by looking at history from a global perspective rather than from a Western lens.

22. Sketching for Architecture + Interior Design by Stephanie Travis

Courtesy Of Stephanie Travis

Having learned architecture in the era of computers and rendering software, a lot of today’s architects lack the ability to sketch. This book is a brilliant guide to help students and architects hone their sketching skills.

23. The Architecture Of Light by Sage Russel

Courtesy Of Sage Russell

As the name suggests, The Architecture of Light is jam-packed with lighting concepts and techniques.

24. Architecture’s Odd Couple: Frank Lloyd Wright and Philip Johnson by Hugh Howard

Courtesy Of Hugh Howard

The twentieth century is known for the two important and influential architects – Frank Llyod Wright and Phillip Johnson. This book discusses their most admired buildings and their design ideology.

25. Craftsman Homes (Dover Architecture) by Gustave Stickley

Courtesy Of Gustav Stickley

This architecture book has 296 drawings, floor plans and photographs illustrate 40 different kinds of “Mission Homes”

26. Seeking New York: The Stories Behind the Historic Architecture of Manhattan–One Building at a Time by Tom Miller

Courtesy Of Tom Miller


This engaging book is beautifully illustrated with drawings and traces the social and architectural history of Manhattan’s buildings, one at a time.

27. Introduction to Architecture by Francis D.K. Ching

Courtesy Of Francis D. K. Ching, James F. Eckler

D.K. Ching, known for his hand-rendered drawings, has written this book for all those who are new to Architecture.

28. Archi-Graphic: An Infographic Look at Architecture By Frank Jacobus

Courtesy Of Frank Jacobus

This book takes an unusual approach to understanding architecture. With numerous infographics, it approaches architecture in an unconventional manner. For designers all over, this is one of the best architecture books to have in your library.

29. Architecture After Modernism by Diane Ghirardo

Courtesy Of Diane Ghirardo

This book examines the architectural world in the 1960s by looking into social and political issues.

30. The Story of Architecture by Jonathan Glancey

Courtesy Of Jonathan Glancey

31. The Architecture of Community By Leon Krier

Courtesy Of Leon Krier

In this book, Leon Krier has expanded his writing from his 1988 book – Architecture: Choice or Fate.

32. The Architecture Student’s Handbook of Professional Practice by AIA

Courtesy Of American Institute of Architects

This is a definitive textbook on practice issues written by AIA. It is a comprehensive guide for students of architecture who want to be their career.

33. A detail in Contemporary Timber Architecture by Virginia McLeod

Courtesy Of Virginia McLeod

This book analyzes the importance of details – technically and aesthetically – in timber architecture.

34. How to Read Churches: A Crash Course in Ecclesiastical Architecture by Denis R. McNamara

Courtesy Of Denis R. McNamara

This tiny, but full of information book, is one of the must-have architecture books. It contains clues for architecture lovers to guess and understand the different architectural styles.

35. Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture by Robert Venturi

Courtesy Of Robert Venturi

Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture have become an essential document of architectural literature.

36. The Four Books of Architecture by Andrea Palladio

Courtesy Of Andrea Palladio

With over 200 illustrations, this single-volume edition gives the reader a glimpse into the mind of the great architect.

37. Architecture in Italy, 1400-1500 By Ludwig H. Heydenreich

Courtesy Of Ludwig H. Heydenreich

This survey of Italian Renaissance architecture has information from Brunelleschi’s dome to the works of Bramante and Leonardo.

38.  The Architecture of the Italian Renaissance by Peter Murray

Courtesy Of Peter Murray

This is a classic and comprehensive guide of the period of the Italian Renaissance in art and architecture.

39. The Architecture of Madness: Insane Asylums in the United States by Carla Yanni

Courtesy Of Carla Yanni

Grandly constructed asylums were a usual sight in American cities. For much of the nineteenth century, there was a widely held belief among doctors and social reformers that insanity was a curable disease, and that architecture could cure it.

40. Architecture of the Sun: Los Angeles Modernism by Thomas S. Hines

Courtesy Of Thomas S. Hines

This book surveys the masters of 20th Century modernist architecture in Los Angeles.

41. Art and Architecture in Mexico by James Oles

Courtesy Of James Oles

James Oles offers new readings of painting, architecture, sculptures, photographs, and prints. He looks at major works by such famous artists as Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo but also discusses less familiar figures.

42. Baroque and Rococo Art and Architecture by By Robert Neuman

Courtesy Of Robert Neuman

This book reviews recent and traditional methods of interpreting artworks.

43. The Architecture of Happiness by Alain De Botton

Courtesy Of Alain De Botton

The Architecture of Happiness is an illustrated book on the philosophy and psychology of architecture and the connection between our identities and the location we are in.

44. The Urban Sketching Handbook: Architecture and Cityscapes: Tips and Techniques for Drawing on Location by By Gabriel Campanario

Courtesy Of Gabriel Campanario

In this book, Gabriel Campanario makes sketching fun and interactive. It helps the reader develop their unique style of sketching, even if one is a beginner in sketching.

45. Why Architecture Matters by Paul Goldberger

Courtesy Of Paul Goldberger

This book helps the reader understand the connections between space, proportion, materials, scale, etc. Upon finishing the book, one has a different way of looking at the architecture around them.

46. Architecture and Violence

Courtesy Of Actar

This is an impressive collection of essays by architectural theorists, on the relationship between violence and space.

47. Cape Cod Modern: Midcentury Architecture and Community on the Outer Cape By Peter McMahon, Christine Cipriani

Courtesy Of Peter McMahon, Christine Cipriani

This talks about a new style of architecture, fusing regional modernism with Bauhaus and post-war experimentation

48. Architecture of First Societies: A Global Perspective By Mark M. Jarzombek

Courtesy Of Mark M. Jarzombek

Starting from the dawn of society, this book travels through time tracking the different cultural formations in various parts of the world. It also looks at the construction methodologies and materials used by indigenous societies.

49. The Splendor of Cuba: 450 Years of Architecture and Interiors by Michael Connors

Courtesy Of Michael Connors

A significant compilation of the important mansions, palaces, and private homes of Cuba that have been brilliantly preserved. This book has structures that were not previously photographed and buildings that are not open to the public.

50. Drawings and Plans of Frank Lloyd Wright: The Early Period

Courtesy Of Frank Lloyd Wright

This has been called the “single most important compilation of works” of Frank Llyod Wright. Hope this long list of architecture books inspires you and helps you be more innovative.

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