Coloring books for adults are very popular. I’m a huge fan of them, and as a huge fan of Japanese things, it only makes sense that I look to Japan for additional coloring sources. I’ve not been disappointed! One of my current favorites is a book called “ガールズぬりえブックメアリーとローラのかわいいくらし.” (Cute Life of Mary and Lola Coloring Book). The illustrations are by Satou Yuka.
Mary and Lola are two young girls who lead very different lives. I haven’t read the entire thing (to be honest I was most captivated by the pictures), but it tells the story of how both girls live throughout the seasons. Mary lives out in the country and you can find her in the garden, reading, having picnics, and cooking. Lola is a city girl with standard girly hobbies like shopping, parties, fashion, and makeup. You see them in their daily lives and what they do with their friends.
This is a great book if you are learning Japanese (like I am). The kanji has furigana making it easier to read. You can treat it like an activity book. There are a couple of places with notes and advice from the illustrator, like in the above picture on the left.
The pictures are really amazing. My favorite coloring books have some sort of action, with people or animals, mostly. I am not a huge fan of abstract coloring books (such as mandalas or geometric patterns). The style reminds me of a shoujo manga. I haven’t come across another Japanese coloring book like it, and I hope there are more in the future or that I have overlooked.
Here is a page featuring Lola in different poses. I started working on this one recently. Beside it (on the left page) is a table with all sorts of beauty items. I really like coloring these type of pictures. As you can see, Lola is very stylish.
This is a picture of Mary (far left) with her friends having a garden party. I also love to color desserts and other food items. There are similar, very detailed, pictures in the book. Some of the pages, like the one above, come with some color already on them. I’m not sure the purpose for doing that but it doesn’t take away from the pages.
As you can see, there are coloring designs on both sides of the paper. I recommend coloring pencils (the book seems to imply this is a good choice as well). Some of the pages have colored backgrounds or have red or green ink instead of black. The book has a variety of pictures and ideas to inspire you.
Overall, this is a really, well done book and I highly recommend it for people who love coloring and love the style of shoujo manga. You can find this book on Amazon Japan.