Yes, I am talking about the new seven-volume set Architectural Guide to Sub-Saharan Africa. I am now about halfway through volume II, and will read the rest, albeit slowly. The books have plenty of text and also a lot of quality photographs. While they are easy to read, they are not actually fast going.
These books have dozens of authors, so a systematic review misses the point. But just think: do you need to read yet another largely political history of Africa, detailing the conflict in Biafra, the fall of apartheid in South Africa, and the Mugabe dictatorship in Zimbabwe? At what I hope are your current margins, what exactly are you going to learn?
Should you instead read seven volumes about how Africans (and sometimes non-Africans) have built Africa? Its homes. Its businesses. Its government buildings and non-profit centers. Its churches and mosques. What Africa looks like and why. Every significant discussion is accompanied by a relevant photograph.
Is that not a more important learning?
Where else can you find a sub-chapter “Beyond Design: Finnish Architects in Senegal”? Which are in fact the most notable vistas in the Nouakchott fish market? Why does it seem that no building in Mauretania is next to any other building in Mauretania? (I am reading the West Africa volume, obviously.)
Definitely recommended, a notable achievement.