Book review – Johanna’s Christmas by Johanna Basford

Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way… ahem. Yes. So as I was walking home in the crazy sudden Estonian winter with tons of snow and then some more snow, I started to feel a little Christmasy. And then I opened my mailbox, I couldn’t have found a more fitting thing, maybe only if Santa himself had been sitting in there. But lo and behold, it was the brand spanking new Johanna’s Christmas by Johanna Basford!

Details: Paperback, Ebury Publishing, 2016
Pages: 250 x 250 x 10mm, 80 pages, good smooth paper, single-sided, perforated
ISBN10: 0753557568
ISBN13: 9780753557563
Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Mine is the UK edition of this book, the US version is very close, the cover is different and apparently the paper as well. I don’t own the US version but you can see a detailed comparison in the Colouring in the Midst of Madness blog.
This is something a little different from Johanna format-wise. There are 40 illustrations but they’re all single-sided and the pages are perforated. The paper is still the same goodness as always, pencils just glide on it. And as you can see from my example image, it does take water as well, in moderation of course. The paper has plenty of tooth and no texture, it’s perfect for pencils.
I love love love the cover, I’m a true girl at heart, secretly. I love the abundant use of gold foil, it is gorgeous and festive.
The images are all Christmas-themed as one can expect. There are gifts and decorations, birds, snowflakes, the whole nine yards of Christmas. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not into holiday-themed books but this one I do find charming and inviting, I do want to do more then this one page from it for sure. It is Christmas but not in an obnoxious in-your-face way like Santa laughing and all that. I haven’t felt the charm of Christmas in years now and this did spark a little remembrance of the emotion, I am very grateful for that.
And yes, the raindeer head is a bit odd to me as well but I am not here to judge artistic choices and lets skip that topic entirely. Other than that, I love quite a few of the images, specially the birds and the rocking horse.

Example image from this book:
Done with Faber-Castell Albrecht Dürer pencils

Overall, I didn’t expect to like this book so much but now I’m feeling all Christmasy and my daughter and I are planning to start making little felt birds for this years Christmas tree, feeling all festive already. Thanks, Johanna, for that, I truly do appreciate feeling this way again!

Disclosure: A review copy of this book was sent to me by the publisher. All of the above opinions are my own.

And a little extra, I sent my daughter out with a camera to show you guys the winter that has arrived and she came back with these:

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