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Alcatraz: History and Design of a Landmark

Alcatraz: History and Design of a Landmark
By: Donald MacDonald and Ira Nadel (2012)

"Shrouded in mystery and rich with history, Alcatraz draws over a million visitors each year. This enlightening volume provides the first complete history of Alcatraz told through its architecture. In friendly illustrations and accessible text, authors Donald MacDonald and Ira Nadel reveal the design decisions that have shaped the island from its first brick and masonry fortress to the infamous concrete cellblock, to the landscape design of its contemporary gardens and bird sanctuaries. Packed with intriguing facts throughout, this little treasure allows an unprecedented glimpse into the life of the island. In a lovely cloth-bound package, this is an eminently giftable book and an entertaining look at one of the nation’s most visited destinations."

- Chronicle Books


"This book, in its unique size and format, tells all, from the island’s discovery to its current use as a national park receiving more than one million visitors each year. I found this book to be an entertaining way to learn about the most famous prison in U.S. history."

- Paula, Raleigh County Library, Staff Pick (2012)

"With lively illustrations by the San Francisco architect Donald MacDonald and text by MacDonald and Ira Nadel, a Vancouver-based writer, this is an easygoing look at one of the nation's most eerily endearing attractions. It conveys a sense of the sometimes organic, sometimes engineered evolution of Alcatraz - from its earliest incarnation as a fortress to the first U.S. maximum security prison in 1934 to the tourist attraction (and dramatic movie and TV setting) it is today.... the aim is to provide a rich picture book for grownups. And that it does handsomely."

- Chloe Schama, Smithsonian (2012)