“The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide, 2nd Edition,” by Allan Bedford, $25 from

Boy, is this a book suited for Christmas. That’s assuming that someone in the family is going to get a LEGO set. The guide shows all the projects in full color and is full of great building tips. You’ll learn the difference between a tile and a plate and why it isn’t a good idea to stack bricks in columns to make a wall. The author says the models he teaches you to build won’t fall apart and can be made in micro or jumbo sizes. Projects include photo mosaics, curved sculptures, train stations with human-like figures and space shuttles. The book has a “Brickopedia,” a visual dictionary of nearly 300 LEGO elements.

Interestingly, at least to us, is that the LEGO Company, based in Denmark, has a full-time engineer who does nothing all day but go into a room full of LEGO blocks and figure out what he can make.

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