A Book Review by Greg Ossi
Title: Windows & Skylights
Author: William P. Spence
Published by: Sterling
Publishing Co. Inc.
387 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10016-8810
Price Softcover: $14.95 (Canada $20.95 )
144 color pages
This book focuses on selecting
and installing the appropriate window or skylight to fulfill
a desired purpose. It is part of the publisher's Building Basic
Series, which it refers to as essential references on home building
This is not a woodworking book and it contains no instruction
on building your own windows. However, it would serve as an excellent
guide to properly installing any shop-made windows.
The book's cover boasts that it has an abundance of color photographs
and features text written especially for the novice. After reading
the book, I would completely agree. Having done some major remodeling
to an older home, including installing new windows, this book
is a step above the typical do-it-yourself type book.
First, the book effectively lays out all the considerations that
go into selecting the appropriate window, including cost, energy
efficiency, appearance and building codes. But it doesn't stop
there. 'Windows & Skylights' continues by reviewing the need
to locate the window properly. Other chapters cover the types
of windows and skylights available, glazing and sun shielding.
Second, the book devotes separate, detailed chapters to installing
windows in new construction and replacing windows in older construction.
These chapters are complete with cut-away diagrams showing proper
framing and flashing techniques. There is also a separate chapter
devoted to the proper installation of a skylight, including proper
orientation and sun-screening.
As I stated above, 'Windows & Skylights' is filled with color
photographs that demonstrate the author's point which I found
was a great aid to my understanding of what he was trying to
explain. In addition to the photographs, the author includes
many informative illustrations that also aid in the reader's
understanding of the technical aspects of selecting and installing
the proper window.
I would recommend this book to anyone contemplating replacing
windows or adding skylights, whether you are hiring a contractor
or going to do the job yourself. Because there are so many factors
involved when choosing a window, this book will provide you with
the knowledge to make informed decisions which generally lead
to better function.
Editor's Note: Sterling Publishing has graciously
donated several books for review which are passed on to our members
free of charge in exchange for thoughtful, honest reviews. Thank
You! And you can usually find their titles at a discount from