I came across an article on building with concrete block in a September/October 1998 issue of Coastal Living. It's a good choice for building because it's econmical, and there is a wide range of choices on the esterior: paint, stucco, brick veneer, and almost any siding material. Inside you can paint, stucco, drywall, panel, or leave the block unfinished. (I think, though, that earlier homes were more likely to be unfinished inside; today they're usually insulated. I lived in a concrete block home with unfinished walls; the wallpaper and paint in one bedroom peeled a lot; and during a wet period, the paint on one interior wall really bubbled.) Concrete block also evens out temperature flucuations, making the house easier to heat and cool. I like it too because I believe it's safer in hurricanes.