Travel book: An Island Sanctuary: A house in Greece

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An island sanctuary: A house in Greece. Photo / Supplied
An island sanctuary: A house in Greece. Photo / Supplied

This isn't an ordinary travel book. On the surface it's simply the story of the house on the Greek Island of Patmos, which international designer John Stefanidis created as his home - certainly a wonderful creation that anyone would want to visit.

But the book is also about Patmos itself, a place with strong religious ties, from Poseidon, who gave it his name, to Artemis, whose worshippers built an acropolis on the heights, and St John the Divine, who found visions in a cave and inspired a great monastery.

And it's about many of the things which make the Greek islands so special, like white-washed buildings, tangy pinenuts, monks in black praying at ancient monasteries, fields of wildflowers, brilliant blue seas and rocky landscapes.

It's certainly the sort of book that makes you want to sell up everything and flee to the sunshine of the Dodecanese islands of the Mediterranean.

* An Island Sanctuary: A house in Greece by John Stefanidis (Rizzoli, $103).

- NZ Herald

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