Sunday, 1 January 2017

Reading Challenge: A Book with Pictures

Book 1 of the Reading Challenge is done.

I wanted to start the year with an upbeat story and this is a Neil Gaiman book I hadn't read before. I also love Chris Riddell illustrations so happy 2017 to me!

Fortunately, the Milk . . . is a children's book but if you're an adult don't let that put you off! Just as the average Pixar movie these days has enough nods to adult humour and knowledge to keep mum and dad entertained, so too does FTM. While being pitched at children, it does not talk down to children, as lines like:
Being a geological formation gives you a lot of time to think
Why is your gorilla holding a trans-temporally dislocated milk container?

The story begins with Mum about to go off and deliver a paper lizards, leaving Dad in charge with a list of things he needs to remember to do. He forgets to get the milk. After he has headed off to the shops, his son and daughter entertain themselves as best they can wondering why he is taking so long on his errand. On his return, he tells them the reasons why he was delayed, a tale that takes in globby aliens (who think plastic flamingos are high art), pirates, a time-travelling stegosaurus, piranhas, vampires and what actually happened to the dinosaurs.

There's a gentle dig at Twilight and a point made on gender assumption. This book also answers that most pressing of questions - what is a grundledorfer?

The illustrations are perfect for this story, complete with the entertaining level of detail you always get with Riddell. My favourite details? The fact that the mermaid tattoo on the pirate had a name, and that a dress was decorated at the hem with a row of skulls. Take time to look at the pictures while reading this book, it's worth it.

9 out of 10 milks

Other books I'd recommend under the Book with Pictures category
Tales from Outer Suburbia by Shaun Tan
The Night Bookmobile by Audrey Niffenegger

Undertaking the #popsugarreadingchallenge and tempted by this book, but already have your Book with Pictures covered? These are other categories in the Reading Challenge this book applies to:
A book that is a story within a story
A book involving travel
A book involving a mythical creature (vampires)
A book with an unreliable narrator

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