Tropical Wonderland by Millie Marotta

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Helllllllllllo readers another review *cheers* of something a little different in terms of the book reviewed. For my birthday this year as well as a glass that fits an entire bottle of wine, (hella yes) the SO bought me one of Millie Marotta’s colouring books and a pack of new colouring pencils *eeeee* (although I wouldn’t recommend mixing the two, the pages could get a little messy.) I used to love colouring as a small child and have wanted to have a go at these gorgeous designs. I didn’t know that bloggers reviewed colouring books but seeing a couple shared on twitter I thought, I could do this. No idea how this review will end up, but imma try and get it all down coherently!

Lose yourself in a riot of colouring in and drawing as you bring the exotic creatures and plants in Millie Marotta’s Tropical Wonderland to life. Millie’s intricate style of illustration encourages you to make your own mark, whether it’s to add to the fine lines on trees or add a splash of colour to the feathers of a tropical parrot. Explore the rainforest further and you will find extraordinary flowers, birds, butterflies and reptiles, including a rainbow boa with shiny scales crying out for a touch of colour. This book will bring enjoyment to anyone who is looking for a creative outlet or a mindful and relaxing activity.

The first thing to comment on is how beautiful the cover of this book is, not only is it square which makes it feel all the more fancy but the cover just is sublime. Inside the paper is smooth and feels good quality but what really stunned me were the designs. They are so delicate and intricate I can see this taking me months, maybe years to get it all coloured in. The designs although grownup have a quirky feel with different animals popped in amongst the foliage, you really could get lost for hours colouring these perfect designs in. I also really liked the use of the white space in most of the designs. When I was looking at which book to get many were full page and repetitive designs. These images are perfectly well thought through to help make the main image pop and really stand out on the page.

The only wobble I think would be if you want to use felt tip pens, (I’m not sure whether stabilio type fibre tipped pens would be the same,) will bleed on the image behind. Because the designs are printed double sided I think it would be seen on the other and because of the use of white space it might be quite easily seen. However I used colouring pencils and as mentioned earlier the paper was smooth and easy to colour in. The only second wobble is that due to the spine some of the double page images lose part of the image. The only way I can see of rectifying this would to have it spiral-bound but I think that would ruin the book as a whole.

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In terms of using the book as a way of instilling calm although the designs look a little terrifying there are not so detailed as to make the ‘reader’ feel overwhelmed. I thought the images with the animals, the flowers and leaves were very calming and I did find myself focusing only on this and being able to block out the anxiety wobbles I was feeling. I think something less detailed wouldn’t work as well because I needed to focus on the images and the intricate designs.

Overall I really recommend this book I have seen so many different ways that people have coloured them in; some have stuck to monochrome, some mixed media with pens and pencils, some rainbow, others sticking with shades of the same colour there are so many different ideas and if you need inspiration I hear Pinterest is covered in inspiration as to how to colour in each image. Additionally I’ve seen that some of the really detailed images have been coloured in blocks with shading so if you’re a little less patient or you don’t want to use as many colours then that’s also an option. This is book is not only good fun but it’s a brilliant way to distress and bring a little childhood fun back into our lives.

7

Bit of a cheeky one, but this book was gifted to me by the lovely T, so another book to cross off the list although will not be finished for a very long time.

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