As the No Starch Publishing press release for The LEGO Adventure Book, Volume One: Cars, Castles, Dinosaurs & More! states: “The beauty of LEGO building is that you can make almost anything. But sometimes every builder needs a bit of inspiration.” Those words are certainly true. I have built with LEGOs all my life, and have had the great joy of sharing this fun with my son in recent years.
The things that can be built with LEGOs never fail to amaze me. In fact, No Starch Press has published books with plans to build working guns, (shooting LEGOs of course), and some very fun “prank” contraptions. The LEGO world is one of unlimited possibilities, but what makes this new book so enjoyable are the great models it presents, the construction of which are shown step by step, in glorious color.
Author Megan H. Rothrock’s new LEGO Adventure Book is a story involving the construction of various LEGO objects, led by our heroine “Megs.” The book begins with the introduction of Megs, who (in a dialogue balloon-bubble) says “Before I begin my travels, I’ll need to set up my home base first. I’ll call up the idea lab.” In the first chapter, she builds her “idea lab,” and even a robot helper, “Brickbot.”
What follows is a very cleverly laid out book of adventures for Megs, who learns how to build all sorts of neat LEGO projects. In this 200-page book, we are given step-by-step instructions for 25 models, including dinosaurs, trains, medieval villages, spaceships, airplanes, and many others. There are also nearly 200 fully-built examples of some very wonderful items. All are in full color, which adds a whole new dimension to the book. Frankly, I have never seen a LEGO book that looks as wonderful as this one.
There are 14 chapters, beginning with the previously mentioned “Building the Idea Lab,” and concluding with “A LEGO Legend.” Although you do not necessarily need to follow the book from front to back, it is probably best read that way. After all, this is an adventure. One neat segue occurs towards the end of the tale, from chapter 12, “Full Steam Ahead,” to chapter 13, “Steampunk.”
In “Full Steam Ahead” Megs learns how to build a very cool LEGO model train. With “Steampunk” she visits the world of Steampunk. This is a nod towards a very hip underground movement. The basic idea behind Steampunk is to marry 19th century objects with 21st century technology. The results are often quite striking, and I applaud the author for incorporating this little-known art movement into the world of LEGO.
LEGOs are a wonderful source of fun for all ages, and educational as well. I must remember that this is a book review, not an advertisement for LEGO, but I do love those little bricks. For a number of reasons, The LEGO Adventure Book is an excellent addition to the LEGO library, and I am looking forward to the further adventures of Megs.