While some people swear adult colouring books relieve the stress and tedium of the rat race, others decry them as another sign of the End Times - the infantilization of North American adulthood similarly heralded by our obsession with Harry Potter, video games, and nostalgic superhero reboots.
But amid more banal coloring book renditions of Benedict Cumberbatch's face and stress-relieving animal designs, there are a few exemplars of the genre that might appeal even to the most curmudgeonly among us.
1. The Hipster Coloring Book
Whoa, meta. An adult coloring book - a quintessential hipster phenomena - that's ABOUT HIPSTERS. Color in their natural habitats (e.g. coffee shops and indie film screenings), explore what's inside their cool vintage bags, and learn about their pets, tattoos, and more. $7.92 from Amazon.
2. The Existentialist Coloring Book
"YOU CAN "COLOR" ALL THE PAGES IN VARYING SHADES OF GRAY" screams the promo copy for this monochromatic wasteland of animal-people and dark quotes from philosophers. Mildly depressing activities on the unknowability of the universe include existential connect-the-dots and a page to draw what Kierkegaard is thinking about. Great for philosophy majors or anyone else overwhelmed by feelings of hopelessness. $7.50 from Archie McPhee.
3. The Official 'A Game of Thrones' Coloring Book
Red weddings. Green fire. Debts paid in gold. Game of Thrones was sort of cut out for this treatment. The official GoT coloring book offers 45 pages of super-intricate swords, sigils, and castles. Settle in this winter with world-renowned illustrators Yvonne Gilbert, John Howe, Tomislav Tomić, Adam Stower, and Levi Pinfold. $15.84 from Amazon.
4. Dinosaurs Smoking Weed
Roll your eyes all you want: you know this is awesome. The perfect gift for anyone who loves dinosaurs/coloring/smoking weed? Comes WITH CRAYONS and tons of fun facts about each dinosaur - and each device the dinosaur uses to get high. We kinda just want to see how the T-Rex operates a lighter with those stubby little arms. $16.22 from Etsy