Harry Potter: Building The Magical World

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Harry Potter: Building the magical world

This long-awaited book was released in the UK this week (although it's been available in other places for some time) and I now have my hands on a copy.

It is similar to LEGO Star Wars, the Visual Dictionary, both in size and content. It's about 2cm thick, 96-pages long and follows DK's trademark page layout of full colour photography on a clean white background with minimal text. It comes with an exclusive minifig, Harry Potter in formal dress robes, that is mounted in the front cover of the book.

However, there is a difference between this and the SW book and that is that this one appears to be complete: every set and every minifig is featured which is something that wasn't possible in the SW one because of the number of sets and figures.

Like the SW book, there's a timeline at the front showing all the sets and when they were released, from 2001 right up to the three sets that have just hit the shelves.

Harry Potter: Building the magical world

The bulk of the book then covers a single topic per double page, either featuring a minifig (e.g. Harry Potter), a scene or location (e.g. Hagrid's Hut) or a specific set (e.g. Durmstrang Ship). 'Data file' boxes on the pages provide details about the sets illustrated such as number of parts, year released, minifigs included and so on. Nothing you can't find out here at Brickset but it's nice to have it in book form.

Harry Potter: Building the magical world

The last section 'Beyond the Brick' features an interview with the LEGO design team, and sections on the Harry Potter computer games, merchandise (key rings, etc.) and finally, right at the back, a gallery showing every minifigure. I'm not sure that it's entirely accurate since I've spotted an error already: Harry Potter from Privet Drive (4728) is shown with tan legs whereas he has light grey legs in the actual set. Nevertheless, it's great to see them all on the same page even if there may be some small errors.

Harry Potter: Building the magical world

Although the latest three 2011 sets are mentioned at the back of the book and in the timeline, that's as far as it goes. For example, the page about the Knight Bus doesn't mention the new one and the minifig gallery doesn't feature the new figures from these sets, so it's already out of date. But that's a problem all reference books have, isn't it?

Apart from that, there is nothing not to like about this book and at the low online price of $13 and £10 I can think of no reason not to buy it. It's definitely a 'must have' for all fans of Harry Potter LEGO.

You can buy it from Amazon, and when doing so you help keep Brickset running:

30 comments on this article

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By in Australia,

This look's great!. I have been waiting so long for this as Harry Potter is my favourite Theme. It's nice to see that they added a lot of detail, and it look's like they put a lot of effort in. Is the Mini-figure a Quality ''Danish'' product, or is it Chinese?

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By in United States,

I saw this and the Star Wars one earlier this week at Costco. They were each $11.99, I think.

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By in United States,

I enjoyed my copy too. On Hagrid's hut, they made a mistake, and put it as year 6.

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By in United Kingdom,

It's a proper LEGO made figure, top quality.

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By in United States,

Super Swell Review! Love the book. Will you be adding the new minifig to the site?

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By in Canada,

Knight Bus is spelled with a "k", not a "n". Other than that, great review and I can't wait to get my book!

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By in Norway,

I guess this is the end of the line, then. They've made sets for all seven books/films now, so I guess this is a nice way to end it. It would actually seem a bit wrong to make more sets after this. I think I'll get this.

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By in United States,

I've noticed that Lego actually does make mistakes in its books. I know my younger brothers had the Minifigure Ultimate Sticker Collection book, and they had a TON of errors in it (it was so bad, my 5 and 8 year old brothers were noticing all the errors and correcting them).

I've actually come to the conclusion that us TFOLs (and AFOLS) are more OCD and attentive to details about Lego stuff than the Lego Company itself! :-)

~grelb32

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By in United States,

Did anyone else see that pic of (what looked like) a prelim. drawing of some type of MAlfoy Manner scence? It's at the bottom of the introduction to Section 2 of the book. Is this, perhaps, the next set, or something else???.....

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By in Canada,

Man the fact that is doesn't include the three New sets is almost a deal-breaker for me... Honestly would it have been so hard to include them? Even if they were preliminary at the time of its printing.

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By in United States,

I sense something... There will be hundreds of these figs on eBay tonight

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By in United States,

Nightshroud99 -- There are full-color pictures of the new sets in the book. It's not like it excludes them entirely. I believe they even appear in the timeline photo near the beginning too but I don't have the book on hand since I'm not at home. The new minifigs dont appear in the gallery though and there's no breakdown of the sets like there are for the others. It's a great book; not sure why it would be a dealbreaker at a measly $13 when it includes an exclusive minifig too.

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By in United States,

Thanks for the great review! I already was interested in this book, but this review has me inexorably entranced. :-)

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By in United Kingdom,

Huw will you be updating the minifigure gallery to include this exclusive figure and the ones from the new sets?

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By in United States,

I recently acquired this book and I have to say it's nowhere near as great as the Star Wars one. The feel to it just isn't that great and the minifig doesn't look proper in Lego form. But this does get me back in the Lego book phase. Still a good book.

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By in United States,

The figure should have been Parvati.

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By in United States,

@grelb32: If you don't like errors, don't read Standing Small.

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By in United States,

I got mine today!! It's definitely pretty awesome!

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By in United States,

Minor error are common in these books, my personal favorite is on Page 13 of the Lego mini fig book: STANDING SMALL that shows/states The "most expensive Lego minifig" is the 14k Gold C-3PO only" two" were made and it is worth "at least" $200.

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By in United Kingdom,

AUSOME i've always wanted to have a harry potter visual dictonary i'm deffenatly getting this

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By in United States,

Yeah, my brother got this yesterday for a school award.

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By in United States,

@jagdjh- Lucky. It's like somewhere around $17-$20 where we live.

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By in United States,

@huw- The minifig is Harry Potter in his dress clothes from Bill and Fleur's wedding in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, I believe.

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By in United States,

@greshmalum: it's Yule Ball Harry, it says so in the book itself.

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By in Canada,

@greshmalum: Harry took Polyjuice Potion to pose as "Barny Weasley" at the wedding. So if that was TLG's intention, that wouldn't make sense, right?

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By in United States,

Thomson & Thompson: But Lego usually goes by the movies in making the sets, and in the Movie, Harry was Harry in the scene.

greshmalum: It's Harry from the Yule Ball, but you could use it for any formal event Harry went to.

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By in United States,

Also, is the Harry figure all loose in the arms and legs like the Luke Skywalker fig? I really hope it isn't.

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By in United States,

@TBOC: No he isn't. Actually, neither was my Luke Skywalker.

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By in France,

@Huw
Now you have to add this minifig to the Harry Potter minifigs gallery ;)

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