500 Manga Creatures by Yichan Li is a huge collection of manga clip art that includes a cd of royalty-free hi-res images to incorporate into your artwork, along with a few tips on how to use Photoshop to colour in and shade them. While there is some criticism as to the Pokemon-like nature of many of these creatures, the book serves as a great tool for drawing them by following the large images with thick black outlines on a faint background grid. The book is not designed for artists, but rather for those of us who just want to have some fun with basic, cute manga. It only took a few minutes to draw a pear woman with a pudgy baby sea lion for a pet. This is great for kids or anyone who wants to make up stories about DIY creatures. The variety is great and the images are simple.
Paperback, 528 pages. Collins Design 2008. $17.05 at Amazon.