Now I truly believe that the quality of any residential architecture books largely depends on editting, i.e., how to thoughtfully select projects to form a coherent presentation of an overarching theme. The theme reflects the purpose of the book (What kind of message the editor wants to convey to the readers? What does the editor want the readers to learn from the book? And what kind of impact does the editor want the book to make?). The theme is the core of the book.
Apparently, the editor had a theme for this book: showing buildings that both follow the paradigm of comtemporary architecture (i.e., being similar to each other) and respect local traditions (i.e., being different to each other). This is a very interesting theme worth pursuing, but also a very tough topic. Does the book succeed in bringing this theme convincingly to the readers? Somewhat but not good enough.
Several featured projects did touch the topic of being similar and unique simultaneously (e.g., The architect of the Split House used an indigenous building material unique to the reagion but at the same time based the design on the modern architectural aesthetics.). Unfortunately, however, this theme was not emphasized consistently throughout the book. Quite a few projects did not follow the overall theme. As a result, it is easy for readers to get lost.
That being said, the majority of the projects are interesting. The floor plans are clear, detailed, and easy to follow thanks to the legend linking the drawings with the pictures.
Overall, a nice little book.