Books & Literature

Book Review: The Bricktionary: The Ultimate LEGO® A–Z, by Ryan McNaught

NON-FICTION: A comprehensive A­-Z of creative builds and insider tips, from the star judge of the smash-hit TV show Lego® Masters Australia.

Challenge your design and construction skills with The Bricktionary – the ultimate A to Z of LEGO® projects, tips and tricks for the whole family.

Ryan “Brickman” McNaught is a LEGO® Certified Professional known to families as the judge of the TV show LEGO® Masters Australia. His latest book, The Bricktionary: the Ultimate LEGO® A–Z, promises “ingenious ideas for your next build, from Aliens to Zebras and everything in between”. It follows his first publication, Brickman’s Family Challenge Book, a volume of building competitions for every member of the household.

First things first. How much LEGO® lingo do you know? Could you spot an AFoL or a KFoL if you met one? The Bricktionary comes to the rescue with definitions of commonly used words to help you become a confident speaker of the LEGO® language (In case you’re still wondering, an AFOL is an ‘adult fan of LEGO® and a KFoL is a kid fan of LEGO®).

There are “pro techniques” spread throughout the chapters and listed in their own handy index at the back. There’s also a colour guide—did you know there are official names for standard LEGO® colours? Each letter of alphabet has its own design challenge. Projects are rated according to their level of difficulty: one brick for basic, two for intermediate and three for designs that are advanced.

The Bricktionary offers plenty of support for builders keen to improve their skills, and by following McNaught’s nuggets of expert advice dotted throughout the book, you’ll soon be stretching yourself. For example, what do you do with your LEGO® model once it’s complete? Instead of immediately dismantling it, why not display it in a way that matches its function? “Flying” models like planes and aircraft can be propped up using a stand or clear plastic bricks for a more realistic perspective.

The Bricktionary is not a book of prescriptive plans. Instead, it offers a wonderfully diverse collection of ideas to spark creativity. Each image could be viewed as a provocation that invites builders to take the inspiration and run with it by expressing ideas in unique ways.

There are lots of prompts to view builds from different angles. I is for interior, for example. How might a minifigure live inside what you’ve constructed? Could you leave the back of the object open to allow for play and viewing? R is for recycle. Build a small LEGO® model then test yourself by pulling it apart and making something new using only the same pieces. Aim for a result that’s completely different from your first effort. Keep going! How many times can you recycle?

This is definitely not a read once then put it down kind of book. The Bricktionary’s A to Z chapters are packed with projects for both new and experienced LEGO® lovers. From silhouettes and unicorns to holiday scenes and hideouts, its design suggestions will ignite the creative fires of even the most jaded AFoLs and KFoLs.

Reviewed by Jo Vabolis
Twitter: @JoVabolis

This review is the opinion of the reviewer and not Glam Adelaide.

Distributed by: Murdoch Books
Released: March 2022
RRP: $39.99

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