Saturday, December 22, 2012

Book Review: LEGO Ideas Book - Unlock Your Imagination

Last in a series of book reviews. You've got two days left. Run out and buy your loved ones some LEGO books!

LEGO Ideas Book - Unlock Your Imagination by Daniel Lipkowitz, 2011, Dorling Kindersley Books.

I'm very happy to end this run of LEGO book reviews with another extremely positive rating. This one's been out for a year, so you may already have it. If you were only going to buy one LEGO book last year, this was the one. If you didn't, you still have time to rectify the situation. As with the LEGO Adventure Book, this book seeks to inspire your building by simply showing you what you can do with the brick.

Author and editor Daniel Lipkowitz brings together an impressive array of AFOL contributors: Sebastian Arts (AlienCat), Tim Goddard (Rogue Bantha), Deborah Higdon, Barney Main (SlyOwl), Duncan Titmarsh and Andrew Walker. These builders made a ton of models for this book. I didn't bother counting them, but there are 200 pages, and almost page has several different models, all beautifully photographed.

There are no real instructions in the book. Oh, in a few places they include exploded constructions so you can see how this or that detail was done, but the stated purpose of the book is: "The ideas in this book will inspire you to create many more models of your own." And the models are inspirational. Subjects include castles (lots of this - thanks AlienCat!), town buildings, brick built animals, space ships, robots, pirate fortresses, Viking longboats, etc. It's not all fig scale, either. There's quite a bit of microscale, mosaics, and also some sculptures that serve purposes like pen holders for your desktop. There are mini interviews with each of the builders, which is a nice touch. There is also text on each page giving little insights and highlighting details, but truth be told the text is unnecessary. The stars here are the photos. As with all of the various DK LEGO offerings, each page is packed with high quality color photos. I'd love to see more and more books like this (and the LEGO Adventure Book I reviewed previously) that celebrate all of the cool things that AFOLs build. I hope DK comes out with one of these every couple of years - just bring together some top quality builders and let them loose. I'd be happy to give them a list of names!

Again, this is one of those must-have books. Everyone from kids to expert builders will love flipping through the pages - whether they are seeking inspiration for their next MOC, they want to celebrate the community of builders, or just to enjoy all of the beautiful pictures.

MicroBricks-specific content - There are quite a few micro models in the book, which is nice since some of the other books I've reviewed have been very fig-centric.

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