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Beautiful LEGO

Publisher: No Starch Press

Beautiful LEGO is an aptly named coffee table book that shows just how the simple building block toys can become a wide range of art pieces.

This book is filled with almost 300 pages of high resolution pictures showing off a wide variety of models built by some of the world's most dedicated builders. These models range from sprawling cities, like the cover photo called "Contact" to mini-scaled models depicting animals in a minimalistic manner with as few blocks as possible.

The scale of the models isn’t the only thing that varies in Beautiful LEGO. The subject matter ranges from dark pieces the would look good in a Lovecraft book or Tim Burton film, to science fiction robots, movie scenes and historic buildings. While most LEGO fans know that the only thing that limits a builder is imagination (and the number of blocks owned), this book can help show that fact to even the least LEGO-friendly person.

Mike Doyle, the book’s cover-model builder, has not only put together a stunning array of pieces grouped by like themes, but he has also included interviews with about a dozen builders. These short segments of text not only help to give insight into some of the artists’ histories, but it also does a great job of punctuating lengthy spans of photographs with information that seems to fit just right.

The only real criticism I can say of the book, and it is a minor one, is that I wish it was in hardcover. While the binding and cover are both beautiful and sturdy, in my mind, a hardbound book works best on a coffee table.

While we have reviewed quite a few books that would fit into the coffee table category, I don't think I've had the pleasure of getting one in that feels like it would do well next to books of paintings, sculptures and other "fine arts;" that is until, Beautiful LEGO. This book just feels like it would be in place in a wide variety of homes, for both the LEGO aficionado and the art enthusiast.

-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

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Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated