Once they reach high school many LEGO fans put their bricks in the attic. But for countless more, LEGO bricks are a key part of their adult professional and social lives. Known affectionately as Adult Fans of LEGO, or AFOLs, these builders love those colorful plastic bricks so much that their devotion borders on cultish adulation.
Tens of thousands of AFOLs attend conventions to meet with like-minded builders, and they spend hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars creating scale replicas of Yankee Stadium and World War II battleships, robotic chess sets, and life-sized dinosaurs. Builders post their creations online to be shared with fans of all ages around the world. Their innovations—and the proud builders themselves—are featured in The Cult of LEGO (No Starch Press, November 2011, full color, hardcover, 304 pp., $39.95, ISBN 9781593273910).
The timelessness and near-limitless potential of what a builder can create with LEGO bricks have played a critical role in the toy's continued success and the LEGO Group's billions of dollars in sales. "With LEGO, an adult can prototype an invention or create a museum-worthy work of art," said Baichtal. "Even so, those bricks never lost any of their whimsy, and children and adults simply love playing with them."
In the end, most adults use LEGO bricks for the same reason kids do: to have fun. "We're all members of the Cult of LEGO—the only membership requirement is clicking two pieces of plastic together and wanting to click more," said GeekDad blogger and AFOL Jim Kelly. "Now we have a book that justifies our obsession."
About the Authors
John Baichtal is a contributor to MAKE Magazine and Wired's GeekDad blog. He has also written for legendary tabletop gaming magazinesDragon and Dungeon, as well as Kobold Quarterly and 2600: The Hacker Quarterly.
Joe Meno is the founder of BrickJournal, a print and online LEGO® fan magazine. He has organized and run LEGO fan events, acted as an advisor on LEGO projects, and helped design LEGO sets.
My Take on the Book
This was an amazing book! For anyone who has been or currently is a fan of legos, this book takes you inside the world or Lego and completely makes it turn on end. With beautiful images and intricate inside knowledge of all things Lego, you will leave the book completely intrigued and wanting to go out and buy a whole new set of Legos to work with immediately. In reading this book myself, I found myself looking deeper into the book and being completely immersed in the world. I was amazed to find that I was half way through the book, and that was in the first evening. This book is a must have for any lover of Legos!
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