A definitive and illuminating biography of one of the most famous -- and most famously unfinished -- buildings in the world, the Sagrada Familia of Barcelona. Antoni Gaudi's masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia, epitomizes the architect's quixotic ambition, his religious devotion, and the sensuous eccentricity of his design. Its scaffolding-cloaked spires reach up to the heavens, dominating the Barcelona skyline and drawing in millions of visitors every year. What seduces our attention is not only its architectural extravagance but the sheer longevity of its construction. More than a century after Gaudi saw the first stone laid in 1882, the Sagrada Familia remains unfinished, unlikely to be completed until 2026 at the very earliest. It has survived two World Wars, the ravages of the Spanish Civil War and the "Hunger Years" of Franco's rule. It has defied the critics, the penny-pinching accountants, the conservative town-planners, and the devotees of sterile modernism; it has enchanted and frustrated the citizens of Barcelona; and it has passed through some of the most momentous changes in society and history.