“Absolutely essential reading for every LEGO fan.” —Blocks
The definitive history of LEGO, based on unprecedented access to the company’s archives and rare interviews with the founding family that still owns the company
"This book tells the story of how my family built the LEGO brand." —Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, former President/CEO of the LEGO Group and 3rd generation owner
It’s estimated that each year between eighty and ninety million children around the globe are given a box of LEGO, while up to ten million adults buy sets for themselves. Yet LEGO is much more than a dizzying number of plastic bricks that can be put together and combined in countless ways. LEGO is also a vision of the significance of what play can mean for humanity.
This book tells the extraordinary story of a global company and a Danish family who for ninety years have defended children’s right to play—and who believe grown-ups, too, should make the time to nurture their inner child. The LEGO Story is built on Jens Andersen’s unique access to LEGO’s own archives, as well as on Andersen’s extensive conversations with Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, former president and CEO of the LEGO group and grandson of its founder, Ole Kirk Christiansen.
A riveting cultural history of changing generations’ views of childhood and the importance of play, The LEGO Story also a fascinating case study of how innovation and creativity helped leaders transform LEGO from a small carpentry business into the world’s largest producer of play materials and one of the most beloved brands in the world. Richly illustrated with never-before-seen photos from the family’s private archive, this is the ultimate book for fans of LEGO, revealing everything you ever wanted to know about the brand.
About the Author
Jens Andersen is an award-winning Danish author and literary critic whose works include acclaimed biographies of Hans Christian Andersen and Astrid Lindgren. He has a Ph.D. in Nordic Literature from Copenhagen University. Jens lives in Denmark and writes for several Danish newspapers.
“This compelling cultural history of the Danish company that revolutionized toys for children and adults draws from the author’s unique access to Lego’s archives and interviews with its former president.” — New York Times Book Review
“The LEGO Story is absolutely essential reading for every LEGO fan. If you know nothing about the company and founding family’s history, then this is the perfect starting point. If you already know a lot of it, then this is packed with new information that you haven’t heard before. Whatever you do though, make sure you finish any urgent build projects before you start reading – this pacey, enjoyable book is really hard to put down.” — Blocks
"This book tells the story of how my family built the LEGO brand." — Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, former President/CEO of the LEGO Group and 3rd generation owner
"How did stackable plastic blocks made by a Danish toy company become as ubiquitous in America as Tylenol and Kleenex? The Lego Story starts with the Christiansen family’s Great Depression–era decision to switch from carpentry to toys in order to stay afloat and brings us to the present." — Vulture, "6 Books You Should Read This November"
"LEGO owner Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen spills all in [this] authorized biography. ... Charting 90 years of LEGO history, complete with archival photographs, The LEGO Story goes beyond the life and times of Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen to detail how his grandfather Ole Kirk first started the LEGO Group in 1932. Along the way, Andersen recounts how the Kristiansen family transformed the company from a small carpentry business into a world-leading toy manufacturer." — Brick Fanatics
“A welcome gift for the LEGO lover in the family and a revealing work of business history.” — Kirkus Reviews
“Charming. … Andersen does a great job showing the company’s lasting power through 90 years of change, and the archival photos are a treat. This will delight business history buffs.” — Publishers Weekly
“Those interested in LEGO history will find this book comprehensive and will enjoy interviews, photos, and the evolution of a toy legend.” — Booklist
"With unprecedented access to the legendary company’s archives and interviews with key players, Jens Andersen tells the story of Lego, the iconic plastic building block upon which countless childhoods were built. Andersen’s cultural history chronicles not only the ups and downs of the business since its founding in 1915, but also how it tapped into shifting cultural philosophies about the importance of play. A fun read for fans." — Arlington Magazine, "10 New Books to Read in November"