Another blogger I respect and follow (Paperback Writer), recently mentioned Blogging for Books. My thought was 'free books' and 'blog about them'...this is a win-win situation. So for my first book I selected an adult coloring book.
First off, I have to say coloring as an adult is far from new for me. I spent the early 70's in my bedroom, going through scores of flair pens, coloring away on the huge art posters to color. Back then there was no teenage angst, you dealt - quietly. After 9/11, I would often bring coloring books from the dollar store into work. I was ahead of the curve and knew about zentangling before it became the thing to do. So the whole craze these days about color books for adults - old hat.
I requested The Time Garden by Daria Song as my first book. Before I get to my review, let me tell you about the journey the book arrival took. Apparently it is suppose to arrive sooner than I was thinking it should. And I get this email about how they thought it had been sent out, but there was actually a backlog at the warehouse and it didn't get sent out on time. So they sent me a second book as an apology. Also a coloring book - completely different from The Time Garden.
About this book. I LOVE IT!
First off, it seems almost a sacrilege to color in it. The illustrations are delightful and there is a story behind the pictures. The cover, which is also an illustration in the book, is embossed with metallic paint on the leaves. Everyone I have shown the book to before I started coloring in is were all 'ah's' over it.
Daria Song is Korean and the pictures are delicate and detailed. This is not a book for your crayons. You could use crayons, but I think they would be too 'bulky' feeling for this book. I was a little worried about possible bleed-through on the pages even though the paper has a good feel to it. I decided to try different coloring implements on the pages.
When I got out my markers, watercolors and colored pencils it drew an assistant like flies to sweets. The story behind the drawings is a little girl, who couldn't sleep, getting drawn into a magical cuckoo clock which transports her to this garden. Very simple story, detailed drawings.
There is NO way these little hands are touching this book. In fact, I am even pouting a bit about letting my 22 year old daughter color in it and she's an artist.
One page caught my attention immediately. It's a picture of blossoms and I knew I wanted to try a watercolor wash on it.
I was a little hesitant because I didn't know how the paper would react with the water. I did very well.
The pink and green wasn't enough for me, so I had to add sky to the page.
This page I tried out flair pens, colored pencils and Stadler markers. All worked well and didn't show on the other side.
Overall, I have to give the book a major thumbs up. Not only is the story and drawings fantastic without any additional coloring, but the quality of the paper makes it a joy to use. This book is one which would make a great gift to someone special.
Note: I received the book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a fair and true review. All opinions I have given above are mine.