by Chiaki Ida
on 11 December 2015
Style: Contains Extras, double page printing
Format: Dust Jacket, Glue & Stitched
The theme of this coloring book is a longing shop. All of the things in shops and the shops that take your fancy. Fall in love with the gorgeous bakeries, book stores, flower shops, cake shops and others as you wander around the town center.
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The Longing Room Coloring Book Video Review
I hope you enjoyed the video review of this Japanese coloring book which is known as The Longing Room or The Longing Shop.
The Longing Room Coloring Book Review
The Longing Room is a lovely Japanese colouring book that features the interior and exterior of a number of shops around a small town. The main star is a young girl who we follow around town on this journey. Along the way, we get to visit the bookshop, the bakers, a patisserie, the tailor, a shoe shop, clock shop, art supply store, old wares furniture store before popping in to the local cafe. On the way home, the young girl visits the flower shop, open air fruit and vegetable market, where this caffeine and sugar addicted girl has another coffee and a donut.
It is a beautifully illustrated book telling a story of the town as you color your way through it. Every time I look at it, it reminds me so much of Romantic Country and Eriy and the beautiful way that she has of telling a story complete with town map.
Cover & Layout
The Longing Room has a lovely matte dust jacket on it that has a slight waxy finish to it to repel those greasy hands 🙂 The cover is colored with an effect that looks like color pencils in a muted color scheme. On the cover we see the young girl admiring dresses in the window of the shop. The cover image accurately depicts the content inside the book as it comprises mainly buildings (interior and exterior) and the items that belong inside and out. There are very few full faced images of the young girl.
The back cover features the same muted tones with what looks like hurried pencil coloring on it, that ends up looking artistic and pretty. A frame of little buildings featuring the shops in the book surround a donut cart.
As is often the way with Japanese coloring books there is an image that signifies the start and finish of the book. On the front fold out flap of the dust jacket we see a cat sneaking into the partly opened shop door. On the back flap the door is firmly shut and the “closed” sign is up. It is just adorable the way that illustrators tend to do this in Japanese coloring books. It is such a subtle introduction and closing to a book that conveys the meaning in all languages.
The inner brown card cover is decorated, both front and back, with silver printed items from the various shops including bread, shoes, a watch and books.
The Longing Room measures approximately 25cm x 25cm (9.8 in x 9.8 in)
A decorated title page shows the young girl featured in the coloring book with various elements from different shops in the book. You can color, flowers, books, vegetables and dresses on this gorgeous title page. The coloring book starts with a message from the author, in Japanese, and shows the young girl getting ready to go out and the path that she would travel. Over page there is a section on materials and blending, in Japanese. The cute cat featured at the start of the book is seen sneaking through the page turn illustration, indicating that you should follow him/her to proceed through the book. It really is such a lovely way to feature this cat leading you through the book. The preceding pages would be the best place to test out your mediums and how they react with your coloring style.
All of the illustrations have been printed on both sides of the paper. The paper is off white and a medium quality and quite sturdy. All of the images have been orientated portrait style within the coloring book. There are 44 pages in total that comprise double page scenes with the balance of images being presented on one side of the page.
Art work does run to the spine of the book in the double page scenes and in a few of the single illustrations. At the moment, the binding on the book, is quite stiff. As I have been gently pushing it down it has started to give a little. This gives me confidence that it will relax and loosen with further use and be easier to color in the tricky spaces. If that fails, I may have to get Mr Muscles on to the job of pushing the book flat. This is my only niggle with the book, and it may be that I’m just a weakling 🙂
The Longing Room Coloring Book Images and Illustrations
The illustrations in the Longing Room are beautifully descriptive and illustrated. A medium black line is featured in the line art with texture markings being added in a finer line and a duller black. The line art has the feel of hand drawn art about it, that is very appealing and charming.
It is impressive that the artist has given us such beautiful macro and micro views of each shop. We can color the outdoor areas that often feature cobblestone paths and other aspects of village life like posters, bicycles and flowers. The artist then moves us inside each shop where we have a more detailed view of the interior. For some shops, like the bakery, there are also individual close ups of different items in store for you to color.
One of the things that I really like about The Longing Room is there is a massive variety of things to color in. It makes it a wonderful book for practicing all things that you may like to learn to color like metal for scissors, clothing folds, leather on shoes, flowers, stone on the buildings and wood panelling and stairs.
All of the aspects of the shops are incredible detailed but not packed with so much detail that it is overwhelming and too complex. One of the things that shifts the focus to the shop and items within, is the lack of detail on the little girl’s face. Often we see her in profile, but more often it is from behind, meaning that we do not need to worry about the difficulties of coloring faces as much as we would in other books. It seems that this is intentional in order to ensure that the focus remains on the shops the subject of the book.
Whilst this book does contain a lot of detail, there are many areas of open spaces and larger elements within pictures to color in. These factors make it suitable for those with a minor visual impairment.
Please click on an image to view more detail[foogallery id=”7491″]
You know I love the treats that are often to be found in Japanese coloring books. The Longing Shop is no different. At the back of the book there are 7 gift tags and 2 postcards that you can color in and cut out. The page is not perforated, but there are useful cutting lines printed on the page.
Where to buy The Longing Room/The Longing Shop Coloring Book (Japanese Edition)
Where to buy My Colorful Town (English Edition)
The English edition of this coloring book has been released. According to readers the English edition does NOT have the treats at the end. I do not plan on purchasing the English edition.
If you do wish to purchase My Colorful Town the English edition of this coloring book you can do so from the following links.
Happy coloring x