Alexa Hampton

Interior Designer / United States / Mark Hampton LLC

Alexa Hampton’s Book List

I have always been a big reader. My tastes are far-ranging—from police procedurals to history to biography and even chick lit.

70 books
Isabel Allende

See my comment on Eva Luna by Isabel Allende. 

Isabel Allende

Great magical realism.

Martin Amis

For me, Amis is hit or miss. I love his books, but he is such a pessimist, I sometimes have to put his books down. But, he is always hilarious.

Martin Amis

See my comments on The Information by Martin Amis.

Glenn Andres
John Hunisak
A. Richard Turner

A two-volume tour de force about my favorite city on earth. My parents met in Florence on a blind date!

Andrew Alpern

Horrible title—but an excellent book filled with tons of amazing floor plans of New York’s great buildings.

Jane Austen

I don’t understand how a person couldn’t love this book.

Billy Baldwin

One of the biggest influencers of American design.

Billy Baldwin

See my comment on Billy Baldwin Decorates.

Julian Barnes

A great read. I love British authors.

Roland Barthes

As a film lover, as well as book lover, I love art criticism that focuses on semiology.

Jack Basehart
Photographs by Roberto Schezen

I could live in this book. The photography is so delicious.

John Berger

I read this book as a freshman at Brown University and it introduced me to a new way of looking at images. It’s an interesting text.

Allan Bloom

Great political philosopher writing about morality and ethics.

Willa Cather

I read this as a 13-year-old and petitioned my school to exchange this for George Eliot’s Middlemarch as our summer required reading. It is a beautiful, easy read. I love Cather.

Adolphe Chanaux
Léopold Diego Sanchez

A must-have book for any designer.

Lee Child

I love all the books in the Jack Reacher series (more police procedurals)  and can’t wait for the next one.

Winston Churchill

Sometimes it’s hard to believe that this man, who has such an amazing command of the written language, was doing anything else besides writing. He’s incredible.

Pat Conroy

I read this book just before my college interviews. I spent most of them making sure my interviewers went and bought this book. I loved it.

Roald Dahl

Perverse, funny, and a little wicked.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky

This is in my top ten fiction reads. I love the story and I feel for Raskolnikov.

Alexandre Dumas

This is the book that triggered my love of reading. I read it the summer after the fifth grade and, ever after, I was a reader.

Michel Foucault

I love reading theory. Whether or not one agrees, theory usually contains great creative thinking.

Michel Foucault

See my comments on Discipline and Punish by Michel Foucault.

Editors of French House & Garden

I love to pore over this book.

Sigmund Freud

I love this book and it had a huge influence on my academic life.

Peter J. Gärtner

My favorite architect (along with Schinkel, Soane, and Alberti). A great sculptor and a great artist, too.

André Gide

Gide is one of my favorite writers.

Håkan Groth

A beautiful, seminal design book. Crisp Scandinavian interiors like this inspire me.

Mark Hampton

A must for any student of interior design.

David Hicks

David Hicks was a family friend as well as one of my favorite designers.

Nick Hornby


Nick Hornby


Christopher Hussey

An essential trio of reference books in one set that includes Early Georgian: 1715–1760Mid Georgian 1760–1800, and Late Georgian 1800–1840.

Thomas Jayne

Being in the current edition of Finest Rooms in America is a great honor.

Philippe Jullian

Le Style Louis XVI is part of the series Les Grands Styles (“The Great Styles”), which includes Le Style Louis XIV, and Le Style Louis XV. These are essential reference books for interior designers.

Thomas Kernan

This book (“Achievements in French Decoration, 1950-1960”) and Nouvelles Réussites de la Décoration Française, 1960-1966  (“New Achievements in French Decoration, 1960-1966,” also by Thomas Kernan) are two of my all-time designer favorites. I have copies of these at home where they will be safe. They really show how taste in modern decorating has changed over the years.

Thomas Kernan

This book (“New Achievements in French Decoration, 1960-1966”) and Les Réussites de la Décoration Française 1950–1960 (“Achievements in French Decoration, 1950-1960,” also by Thomas Kernan) are two of my all-time designer favorites. I have copies of these at home where they will be safe. They really show how taste in modern decorating has changed over the years.

Elmore Leonard

See my comments on Killshot by Elmore Leonard.

Elmore Leonard

See my comments on Killshot by Elmore Leonard.

Elmore Leonard

Elmore Leonard is a great American author. His dialogue is snappy and fun.

Jean Leveque Editor

You cannot be a decorator without owning this book.

William Manchester

Among my all-time favorite books. Churchill is so colorful and fascinating

William Manchester

See my comments on The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Alone 1932–1940 by William Manchester.

Henning Mankell

One in a series of Scandinavian police procedurals about a grumpy, diabetic policeman, Kurt Wallender. Amazing books.

Robert K. Massie

Another all-time favorite. The World Wars are so unbelievable to me that I love reading about them and Massie is an excellent author. He just published a biography of Catherine the Great. I cannot wait to read it!

David McCullough

This writer makes everything interesting.

David McCullough

I think we all love this book, along with John Adams, also by David McCullough.

Judith Miller

One of my favorite design books. I love the images and the structure of the book.

Nancy Mitford

See my comments on Frederick the Great by Nancy Mitford.

Nancy Mitford

What’s better than Nancy Mitford writing fiction? Nancy Mitford’s historical biographies.

Nancy Mitford

See my comments on Frederick the Great by Nancy Mitford.

Hugh Montgomery-Massingberd
Christopher Simon Sykes

A truly beautiful book with mouth-watering images of important houses.

Edmund Morris

Along with Churchill, Theodore Roosevelt is my historical hero. This book—along with Theodore Rex—also by Edmund Morris, is amazing.

Edmund Morris

See my comments on The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt by Edmund Morris.

Octavio Paz

A beautiful poetic book with philosophical and political essays.

Anne Rice

What can I say—a really great yarn.

John Richardson

Not as pulpy as Arianna Huffington’s biography—more serious and more in-depth.

Stephen Salny

A catalogue raisonné of an important American architect.

Roberto Schezen

A majorly beautiful book that inspires.

Dr. Seuss

With three small kids, I’m grateful I have Dr. Seuss around. This book is a favorite of mine from my childhood.

Joan Smith

A fascinating book of essays on the topic of misogyny. A terrific read despite the gloomy subject.

Peter Thornton
Helen Dorey

A great book about a fascinating architect and the contents of his house, which is my favorite museum.

Marvin Trachtenberg
Isabelle Hyman

A textbook written by a former professor of mine. It’s a must for any student of architecture.

Katharine Tweed

A book to pore over.

Giorgio Vasari

Any art historian, serious or not, must read this book—part history, part fiction and part propaganda.

Edith Wharton
Ogden Codman Jr.

The essential book on design by two huge figures.

Oscar Wilde

Perfect and spooky.

Oscar Wilde

Witty and farcical.

comments powered by Disqus