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Fortunately, the Milk Hardcover – September 17, 2013

4.6 out of 5 stars 468 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 3-6-A tale of the bravery and selflessness exhibited by a father taking care of his children while his wife is away. Despite Mom's advance warning, the family finds itself ready for breakfast but without milk for cereal and tea, so Dad takes a trip to the store to get some. Upon his long-awaited return, he gives the children a fantastical and descriptive explanation of the adventures he faced while trying to make it back home. Not only did he embark on a time-traveling hot-air balloon ride with a stegosaurus, but he also confronted pirates, aliens, wumpires, and a volcano god, never losing possession of the milk. Gaiman knocks it out of the park again with this imaginative story. His outrageous plot is perfectly paced to keep advanced and reluctant readers enthralled, and his use of onomatopoeia and humorous descriptions will make the book hard to put down. Reminiscent of Roald Dahl's titles, it will sweep children away into an unimagined world and make them wonder if their own parents have ever had any secret adventures. Young's frequent black-and-white cartoons add to the wackiness of this tall tale.-Amy Shepherd, St. Anne's Episcopal School, Middleton, DEα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

A little boy and his little sister awake one morning, milkless. Their mother is away on business, their father is buried in the paper, and their Toastios are dry. What are young siblings to do? They impress upon their father that his tea is also without milk and sit back to watch their plan take effect. But something goes amiss, and their father doesn’t return and doesn’t return some more. When he does, finally, he has a story to tell, a story involving aliens; pirates; ponies; wumpires (not the handsome, brooding kind); and a stegosaurus professor who pilots a Floaty-Ball-Person-Carrier (which looks suspiciously like a hot-air balloon). There is time travel, treachery, and ample adventure, and, fortunately, the milk he has procured is rescued at every turn. Gaiman’s oversize, tongue-in-cheek narrative twists about like the impromptu nonsense it is, with quick turns, speed bumps, and one go-for-broke dairy deus ex machina. Young fills the pages with sketchy, highly stylized images, stretched and pointy, bringing the crazed imaginations to life with irrepressible energy. Children will devour this one, with or without milk. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: A national media campaign and select author appearances are on the docket to celebrate the release of Newbery Award–winning Gaiman’s latest. Grades 3-6. --Thom Barthelmess
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 680L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1St Edition edition (September 17, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062224077
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062224071
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (468 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Only Neil Gaiman could delight two polar-opposite readerships by releasing one of the most buzzed-about adult books of the year (`The Ocean at the End of the Lane' - so good I still can't bring myself to write a review because THERE ARE NO WORDS!) and then a few months later a lavishly wonderful children's book. It's not surprising, really, because Neil Gaiman wrote both `American Gods' and `Coraline' - cementing himself as a fine storyteller for all ages.

`Fortunately, the Milk. . . ' being Gaiman's children's foray, his Bloomsbury publishers know they can be a bit more blunt and honest with their younger readers. Hence this very apt author billing of 'Ridiculously Bestselling Author'

The book is about a father left in charge of his two children when their mum goes off to a conference. But the first disaster strikes at breakfast-time, when they run out of milk. So it's up to dad to trot down to the corner store for a refill . . . but he takes ages and ages, and it's only upon his return that the children discover what took him so long.

The whole book is a bit tongue-in-cheek, and there's something here for the intended 8-12 readership, as well as the parents for whom this will be bedtime reading. For the kids there are; Dwarves, wumpires, a stegosaurus, aliens, pirates, ponies, a volcano god . . . then for the adult readers there are some references to The Usual Suspects, a little Doctor Who-esque time travel conundrum and some making fun of Twilight. It's all a bit brilliant really. Even more so because Chris Riddell's illustrations have made the dad look like Neil Gaiman himself - which makes me think back on an old blog post Gaiman once posted about where he gets his ideas from.

Interestingly, there are two versions of Gaiman's latest children's book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Neil Gaiman’s “Fortunately, the Milk” is as charming as it sounds. A story to delight even the most lactose intolerant. Read it with your morning breakfast, your coffee or tea; this book will surely please. A wonderful romp full of whimsy, time-travel, dairy and numerous globulous aliens. If you haven’t read any of Neil Gaiman’s works here is a great place to start. It’s good for all ages. Read it with a glass of milk! A book fortified to get you through your day!

If you like Doctor Who, Back to the Future, Monty Python, Neil Gaiman, laughing, reading good books, or dairy, than I suggest reading “Fortunately the milk”. If you don’t like at least one of these things, well, then I suggest consulting a physician immediately.
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Format: Hardcover
I finished The Book Thief and couldn't stop doing the ugly cry so my husband made me promise to stop reading books about small children in Nazi Germany for at least a day. I read this book instead and it didn't make me ugly cry at all. In fact, it was deliciously wonderful and I reveled in the lack of swastikas.
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Format: Hardcover
If you want something fun and imaginative to read, then Neil Gaiman has it for you. FORTUNATELY, THE MILK is about the third of the size of Gaiman’s CORALINE and THE GRAVEYARD BOOK, and also much less macabre. The story is set up perfectly. Mom leaves dad in charge, they need milk, dad blows it, and dad creates a fanciful story to make up his tracks.

I read this book to my kids in three sittings, but it could be done in more or less. Sometimes it is just as fun to close the book and talk about what you think will happen next.

If you are an adult looking to read this for yourself, just know that the fun is rather short, especially compared to other Gaiman writings—even OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE (which is his shortest “novel”). For new readers, this is just perfect.

I especially loved the plentiful illustrations. That was the one thing I wished THE GRAVEYARD BOOK had more of, and this book delivered.

If you are looking to escape, have a little fun, and perhaps a good laugh, then come along and join up. You won’t regret the journey.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I just read this in two sittings with my 5 year old and it was wonderful. Thank you Mr. Gaiman. We both loved it.
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Format: Hardcover
... continues to write amazing stories for all! Coming off the book high of "Ocean at the End of the Lane", I couldn't wait to get this book! I enjoy all the many genres of Gaiman. However, my daughter (11) got to read this before I was able. After I come home from work, she comes to me, hands me the book and says, "Awesome!! Don't worry I won't spoil it for you. (Wink) But I'll tell ya, this dad is waaayyyyy better than the one from "The Day I Swapped my Dad for Two Goldfish". This one is so much more like [my] dad!!!". Lol! Too cute. Anyone of any age will love this book!! Especially dads everywhere!!
Oh! I can't write about this book without mentioning the art! Beautiful linework to match the whimsy of Gaiman. Definitely buy the hard cover!! ♥
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book without knowing anything about it except that it was written by Neil Gaiman. To my surprise it is a children's book! Funny enough I still loved it. I wish I had bought the hardcover version however. The illustrations are fantastic and I don't think the kindle version does them justice at all. You really do miss out on the whole experience that comes from reading your little one a bedtime story where the pages actually turn. Overall,though, another win for my favorite author!
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