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The Ultimate Lego Book Hardcover – October 7, 1999

64 customer reviews

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Hardcover, October 7, 1999
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"This book is not a book about a toy. It is a book about an idea, a set of values, and a long-term commitment to empowering children to use their creativity and build their imagination."
So states Lego Group president Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen in his introduction to this fascinating, visually exciting tribute to Lego bricks and the people who play with them. Lego "maniacs" are no mere invention of Lego Group's industrious marketing machine. Enthusiastic fans of the ingeniously designed, colorful plastic building blocks do indeed exist, and in vast numbers--as of 1996, an estimated 300 million children and adults had played with Lego bricks since the first one rolled off the presses in 1949. (How many yellow knob-headed Lego people populate the earth today? A cool 2.3 billion.)

The visual wizards at Dorling Kindersley have labored together with the staff at Lego to assemble a hefty, photo-rich book essential to the library of any maniac (or maniac emeritus). The Ultimate Lego Book recounts the company's early history as a one-man operation back in the 1930s and subsequent creation of its first plastic "automatic binding brick," to the contemporary construction of myriad Legoland theme parks.

Trivia buffs will appreciate the playful but detailed graphic time line (first Lego window, 1957; first wheel, 1962; first dolphin, 1995). Everyone will love the pages of imagination-stretching constructions, from the small but clever (an unmistakable Elvis, complete with pompadour) to the overwhelmingly detailed (a meticulous model of Grand Central Station) to the downright strange (a life-size space helmet with visor and gas mask). The Lego universe includes a Mona Lisa replica, a 10,500-piece pelican, and even a yellow submarine. Enjoy! (Ages 6 to 106) --Paul Hughes --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Ultimate
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Dorling Kindersley Publishers Ltd (October 7, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0751359483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751359480
  • Product Dimensions: 9.7 x 0.6 x 12.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,088,694 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

122 of 124 people found the following review helpful By Carol on November 22, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I recently purchased the Ultimate Lego Book as a birthday present for my 11 yr. old son. He was so excited and interested, that he begged me to take it to school. Not only are the pictures intriguing, but it was fascinating to read about how designers develop ideas, how computers are involved and and the history of Legos. As an adult, I found myself just as interested as my son in reading each page and looking at the designs! It encourages the child to read and to think of other ways to be creative! An enjoyable gift to give as well as receive!
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47 of 48 people found the following review helpful By "clewis3" on January 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I must admit, I don't own this book. I haven't read all of it either. It's my little brothers, he's read most of it. When I was somewhere around 2 (that was almost 13 years ago) my uncles bought me a a bunch of huge containers of LEGO bricks. I have been endlessly amused by the stuff ever since (for the record, I'm the only girl my age I know of who still likes to build with it). Anyway, I was flipping through this book soon after my brother got it thinking "Hey! This is pretty cool!" Believe it or not I really didn't think there were people who's job it was to make huge LEGO models out of any peices they want. This is one of the many interesting things I picked up just from leafing through it in abouit five minutes. On top of that the pictures are great. So, if you like LEGO at all or know someone who does you should pick it up. It's got tons of stuff any LEGO maniac would find fascinating.
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 20, 2001
Format: Hardcover
My older son and younger nephew are both dedicated Lego fans. Beginning around age 6, they could not get enough information about Lego . . . nor enough Lego sets. Thousands of dollars later their thirst is still not slaked. This book is less expensive than most of the better Lego kits, and will bring many hours of pleasure to those who love Lego. If you are a teenager, you will probably find this book a bit elementary and will likely see it as a four-star book. If you are an adult, you will mainly enjoy the illustrations of amazing Lego models that the master builders have created, and this will be a three-star book for you.
The book has a little of everything. You get a thumbnail background on the company's history, key dates for major innovations, how master builders are selected, major exhibits from the three LEGOLAND parks (in Denmark, the U.K., and California), and the latest in robotics, software and merchandise. The book also shows how Lego can be used to create scale models for explaining ideas (such as the ones for how Lego blocks are manufactured), as well as bringing major buildings to life (such as the 21-foot-tall Empire State Building). The final section shows how Lego blocks can be employed to create sculpture and artistic images.
"Our aim is to stimulate children to become masters of their own lives . . . ." And Lego has been successful at that. While most children start out slavishly following the kits, soon they jumble all of the pieces together and just start making up their own objects. That's when Lego's flexible potential becomes important. In fact, that's how master builders are qualified, by taking a random group of components and seeing what they can build in 45 minutes.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By B. Beckwith on December 26, 2000
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are a fan of Legos, this is a great book. It is enjoyable to look through and provides lots of information on the history of the Lego company and the Lego bricks loved by millions. It is NOT and instruction manual.
One of the reviews I read about this book included comments about how impossible it is to build the models shown in the book. My response: Duh! This book isn't intended as an instruction manual. However, there are a lot of great ideas in the book. I was inspired to create my own Lego chess board after seeing the one in the book. (I don't have all the pieces I need, but I'm in no hurry.)
Anyway, the bottom line is that if you like Legos, you'll probably like this book. A great addition to any coffee table.
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35 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Anthony Lertora on November 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This book is not just a book a cool Lego creations, it's a book that describes the company that has forever changed the children of this generation. Parents with children who like to take things apart turn to Lego to turn their destructive nature into constructive fun. This book is a must-have for all Lego maniacs.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 10, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent guide to the world of LEGO, whether you're a kid who loves playing with LEGOs, the parent of a LEGOmaniac, or a grownup who's been playing with LEGOs since childhood. As someone who fits in the last category, I was impressed with the collection of photographs, especially of older LEGOs that I still own! Everyone will enjoy this book over and over.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 9, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is a great book with a lot of amazing pictures of incredible lego masterpeices! Every Lego builder/collecter should own one of these
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59 of 75 people found the following review helpful By Charles B. Naumann on December 27, 1999
Format: Hardcover
A good alternate title for this book would be `Why you cannot be a LEGO Master Builder'. This book epitomizes my frustration with LEGO building blocks. Skills be damned, there is absolutely no practical way to obtain enough key LEGO pieces to build even the most modest models presented in the book. I see wonderful ideas for LEGO sets in this book, the '57 Chevy, the school bus, and many others and yet the sets on the store shelves cannot practically be used for these models. At times it seems there is a conspiracy by the LEGO group to keep the `good' LEGO pieces out of the publics hands. Maybe they are afraid of someone building a private theme park. The book does contains beautiful pictures of breathtaking LEGO models, and the book is a must have for anyone with even a causal interest in LEGO. However, my enjoyment of the book is marred by my frustration in trying to obtain a sufficient quantity of LEGO elements to build my own models, and the overall tone of the narrative of the greatness of all things LEGO.
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