Aidalro Illustration Review – But Why? A community of geeks

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Reading time: 3 minutes

In case it wasn’t obvious, I love mangaka AidaIro’s series In the toilet Hanako-kun, which is serialized in Japan in the magazine Monthly fantasy. I was really excited when I heard that English publisher Yen Press was bringing the companion art book to the series: Illustrations by AidaIro: Hanako-kun related to Toliet. The book contains illustrations and bonus illustrations from the span of the first eleven volumes in the series. The English translation is by Alethea Nibley and Athena Nibley, with letters by Phil Christie.

AidaIro Illustrations is a wonderful addition to the toilet-related Hanako-kun library. This is especially the case for me, as one of the things I consistently praise in my reviews is the mangaka’s unique art style. Fantasy and slight darkness are on full display here. The beautiful cover of the volume is presented in full two-page spreads, before they are altered with text to fit the covers. An added delight is the inclusion of the color cover and pages that were included in the issues of Monthly Fancy when the chapters were originally published. This is something that English readers will really appreciate, because unless we order international mailings and subscriptions, we won’t get to see the original serialized format of the work, and the fact that the series featured in the magazine may have additional colors to promote the new chapter. A personal favorite is the two pages at the very beginning of the book, as these were art pages in the magazine to advertise the new upcoming series before its debut. Flipping through the book, you can see how AidaIro grew in her art style as the popularity of the series increased.

AidaIro Illustrations also includes prints of the bonus art cards, prints, and posters that were used as promotional items for individual bookstores in Japan, depending on where fans choose to purchase their copy of the latest volume. There are also prints of the character images drawn for cafe collaborations, where artwork would have been served coming out of different menu items. My personal favorite inclusion is the illustrations that AidaIro has done for each birthday of Monthly GFantasy. Again, it’s a nice little celebration for the magazine that I wouldn’t have been able to experience otherwise.

If there is a downside to Aida Iro Illustrations, it would have to be the little text there is. Almost no index explaining what each illustration is for or belongs to is included only at the very end of the book. Although it is absolutely gorgeous to flip through and comes with a gorgeous gold foil printed dust jacket, it is a skinny paperback. For the price, it would have been nice to have a bit more text commentary for AidaIro himself. Granted, it’s not Yen Press’s fault, as the localization mimics the original Japanese version. So if little text has been included, there’s not much they can do. It’s still a wonderful book to have for any fan of the series, but if you’re expecting something like Tokyo Ghoul:re Illustrations: zakki, it’s not that.

AidaIro Illustrations: Hanako-kun in the toilet is a great addition for collectors of the series. For the price, it would have been nice to have more text and commentary from the mangaka, but the large amount of illustrations included in the book, as well as the gold foil printed dust jacket, help to make up for that a bit.

AidaIro Illustrations: Hanako-kun in the toilet is available now wherever books are sold.

AidaIro Illustrations: Hanako-kun’s Toilet-Related Artbook

TL:DR

AidaIro Illustrations: Hanako-kun in the toilet is a great addition for collectors of the series. For the price, it would have been nice to have more text and commentary from the mangaka, but the large amount of illustrations included in the book, as well as the gold foil printed dust jacket, help to make up for that a bit.

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