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Built to Last Hardcover – October 25, 2010

4.7 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Amazon.com Review

Product Description

This new book—inspired by three classic, award-winning books—reveals the how and why behind some of the most fascinating and enduring structures humankind has ever created. Macaulay has revised texts based on new research, created gorgeous new drawings, in some cases wholly re-imagined scenes from the books—bringing Castle and Cathedral to life in full-color for the very first time. The resulting illustrations add to the reader’s understanding of these buildings, capturing intriguing new perspectives and a depth of detail in structure and atmosphere.

This impeccably researched volume is not only a necessary addition to the bookshelf of any David Macaulay or architecture fan, but will delight readers of all ages who are experiencing his work for the first time.




Bonus Content: Sketches from the Author
(Click on Images to Enlarge)


A reference model for the ribs of the vaulting on the roof truss

Laying out the drawing of the roof trusses

A quick reference model for the roof trusses



An early sketch of the flying buttresses and one gargoyle

Author modeling for the drawing of King Edward I. Note the headband and royal Tin Tin watch

Sketch for the kitchen scene while making dinner fit for a king


From School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up–Three of Macaulay's classic construction books, Castle, Cathedral, and Mosque, are combined in one volume, with a wealth of new material added. Rather than merely colorizing the original lines of the first two, the artist created all new illustrations and reworked most of the text for consistency and accuracy. Felt-tipped markers and colored pencils offer striking new views in Castle and Cathedral, matching the depth, detail, and clarity of the earlier versions without the extensive crosshatching used in the original black-and-white drawings. The content of some pictures has changed, frequently adding to the human stories that are told along with the construction. The architectural complexities of the church come through in both versions of Castle, for example, but the new one subtly adds the emotional element of a funeral in progress in the background. Other changes add key steps not covered previously, such as roofing the crypt in Cathedral. Some written passages are expanded and others are more concise, depending on the topic. Some steps, such as the window-making in Cathedral, are placed earlier or later within the narrative. While the first two titles are fully revised works, Mosque remains mostly unchanged, beyond some minor text editing; with a few exceptions, such as the addition of towels for the bathing men, the illustrations are identical. Though most libraries won't want to discard their copies of Cathedral and Castle, the new color artwork and updated content give this three-books-in-one volume high value and strong appeal.–Steven Engelfried, Wilsonville Public Library, ORα(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 13 years
  • Grade Level: 5 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 1280L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (October 25, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0547342403
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547342405
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.9 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #93,516 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By SBCincinnati TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 18, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Built to Last is a compilation of David Macaulay's books Castle,Cathedral: The Story of Its Construction and Mosque. At $10 on Amazon, this hardbook book is hard to beat. My nine-year-old-Lego-loving-son thoroughly enjoys browsing through the pages of this fantastic book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The books themselves are wonderful and capture ones imagination and let children relive history, but the kindle version is terrible. The resolution of the images is terrible! so then they repeat illustrations and text so you are left totally confused. Tried on 8.9" fire and iPad app all, equally poor resolution.The text has no flow and is impossible to read. Needs to be rescanned at high resolution so that at least on a tablet one can get the flavor of the original.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have always like David Macaulay's work and as a child really liked his "The Way Things Work". Built to Last follows a similar path as that book only with architectural wonders that have stood the test of time. The illustrations are fascinating and allow you to see the true labor that is necessary to build these structures. Castle and Cathedral were stand alone books that have been brought together with Mosque to give a unique description of how these buildings came to be. The book also shows how distinctly different each building was made yet, how each technique has stood the test of time. It really got me thinking as a child and I remember using my lego's to mimic the buildings. I am a father now and I wanted to instill the same wonderment in my son so I picked this up. The new color illustrations are fantastic and you can tell a lot of work went in to make them look really good. (Original was black and white and in order to make them color and look right the drawings had to be redone). While the content of the book might be a little over the head of a small child the images inspire the inner engineer and I think that is great.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
David Macaulay's books are written so a teen or younger can understand, but are actually fascinatingly educational for adults too. I have a Ph.D in engineering and still love to read them.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Fantastic. Great visuals of construction techniques, foundations and timelines all written to follow simple plots that give a good grasp of where, why and by whom these structures were built. The pictures are not only entertaining but show great detail of how roofing was accomplished by rolling together the edges of lead sheets; how windows were framed with stone being laid flat for carving then lifted into place and secured; how arches were supported while under construction and the methods used to ensure they stayed perfectly shaped.
This book includes the three books castle, cathedral and mosque. I already had castle, bought this and now can either get rid of the castle-only book or use it to write notes in. Highly recommend for anyone interested in how these structures went up.
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By T. Hess on October 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book for grandkids and definately enjoyed reviewing it before giving it to them. Hope they will appreciate it as they grow and begin to understand the concepts. Wonderfully, creatively illustrated.Shoud be in every kids library.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love books by David Macaulay that tell the story of the construction of great buildings or of essential ones. I find the stories fascinating and get a glimpse of how life was lived in past ages. Highly recommended.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellent work, but poorly advertised. My history teacher who uses the black and white versions of Castle and Cathedral (not to mention Pyramids) extensively in his classes, and myself as a huge fan of the author, had never even heard of this colored print even though it's already six years old.
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