7 Amazing Architectural Pieces in Books

Feb 01, 2013
Jim Salvati's rendering of Hogwarts I’m inspired week after week by Flavorwire’s Architecture page. With roundups like Beautiful Buildings Made from Ice and Snow and A Survey of Awesome Aquarium Architecture, it’s as if imagination is coming to life in those structures. The world of books offers some equally amazing structures that I think deserve a list of their very own. My fellow OOM-ers and I came up with a few: Hogwarts, with a ceiling that mimics the sky, staircases that rearrange themselves and a vast amount of secret passageways is a castle that literally ‘magical.’ The Factory in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory could be on the list for many of us simply for having a ‘Chocolate Room’ but the Great Glass Elevator is a very cool feature! Along the same lines, the Witch’s House in Hansel and Gretel is made entirely of cake and confectionary. Pemberley is described in Pride and Prejudice as ‘a large, handsome, stone building, standing well on rising ground, and backed by a ridge of high woody hills;—and in front, a stream of some natural importance was swelled into greater, but without any artificial appearance.’ District 13 may not be the prettiest of architecture but any structure that can accommodate an entire society underground is definitely an architectural feat! Similarly, Suzanne Collin’s Underland Chronicles features the underground stone city of Regalia, which fantastically serves humans but giant bats as well. The Castle of the White Witch may have been constructed with black magic but it’s spires of ice sound beautiful, if somewhat foreboding. Of course this list could go on and on. Without the laws of engineering from the ‘real world,’ structures in books are limited only by imagination. My fellow OOM-ers also mentioned the Whippet Hotel in Floors, Grace’s Mansion in The 39 Clues, the Manor House in The Dark Unwinding, The Secret Garden, the garden of the Queen of Hearts and even an honorable mention for Wayne Manor – plus the real-life favorites of the Plaza from Eloise, the Paris Railway Terminal from The Invention of Hugo Cabret and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Do you have a favorite piece of literary architecture?