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Children's books

June children's bookclub choice: Fortunately The Milk by Neil Gaiman - apply for free copy!

56 replies

RachelMumsnet · 02/06/2014 14:01

Neil Gaiman was recently described by the Sunday Times as 'the nearest thing children's books have to a Rock Star' and 2 million twitter followers are proof of his cult status. Fortunately the Milk... is a departure from many of his darker more macabre children's stories (think Coraline, The Graveyard book) but equally as fantastical and inventive.

A dad who nips out to buy a pint of milk is delayed by, among other things, dinosaurs, time travel and 'green globby things'. With superbly anarchic illustrations from Chris Riddell, this is perfect bedtime reading for children aged 8 + as well as Gaiman-fan parents (a great gift for Father's Day).

See Neil Gaiman reading an extract and if you fancy reading this with your Dcs apply for one of 50 free copies.

Everyone who accesses a free copy will be asked to post a review, join the discussion on this thread and/or tweet about the book using #Mumsnetbookclub.

June children's bookclub choice: Fortunately The Milk by Neil Gaiman - apply for free copy!
OP posts:
ScarlettDarling · 02/06/2014 14:30

Big Gaiman fans in this house...my 2 would love a copy!

dinkystinky · 02/06/2014 15:10

Aah - we already have this (on my kindle with extra bits in)- its fab though and my 8 year old and 5 year old both love, love, loved it

cornflakegirl · 02/06/2014 21:34

I would love a copy of Fortunately the Milk. We borrowed it from the library a few months ago - I was expecting it to be quite dark so was really surprised that it was mildly surreal and just really funny. DS1, who is 8, and more the target audience, also really enjoyed it. I'd like to read it to DS2, who is coming up 5, and I think old enough now to appreciate the silliness. And he would also love the illustrations - they are very clever, and a perfect match for the story.

Rachel - there was some talk of a webchat with Neil Gaiman - did anything come of it?

dinkystinky · 03/06/2014 08:05

Bump - it really is a fab book.

PrincessTheresaofLiechtenstein · 03/06/2014 08:19

Only just discovering Gaiman myself - don't what I have been doing all these years! Ds is just the right age to enjoy this book, it sounds fab.

frazzledbutcalm · 03/06/2014 17:28

Have applied, fingers crossed. Think my ds would LOVE this!

RunsWithScissors · 03/06/2014 18:25

Fingers crossed, love NG and would love to get my dd as a fan as well.

Uptheairymountain · 03/06/2014 18:52

Ooh, I haven't seen this book.

I absolutely adore Neil Gaiman's work, especially some of his GNs like Harlequin Valentine.

DD particularly loves Chu's Day, but we find it hard to read her other favourite, Blueberry Girl, without me turning into a snivelling mess Grin.

millililli · 03/06/2014 21:22

Haven't come across this one before, but sounds great

almondfinger · 03/06/2014 21:50

I'd love a copy please. Love Neil Gaiman.

Panicmode1 · 03/06/2014 22:01

I'd love a copy too - desperate to stop my DS reading Minecraft comics!

MrsMot · 03/06/2014 22:02

Oh this book is so so so good. We read it a few months ago, bloody brilliant!!!

CMOTDibbler · 03/06/2014 22:07

We loved this!

Beehatch · 03/06/2014 22:07

Someone mentioned the book on here recently and I've been meaning to look out for it. Sounds just up DDs street!

WildEyedAndHairier · 03/06/2014 22:11

I'd love a copy please. DS is nearly 8 and this sounds like something he would really enjoy.

NataliaMumsnet · 10/06/2014 12:51

This giveaway is now closed. We will contact those selected to receive a free copy via email. Be sure to let us know your thoughts on the book.

gildedlily · 12/06/2014 11:18

Big thank you - just heard I'm getting a copy. Looking forward to reading it to my boys

frazzledbutcalm · 12/06/2014 20:07

Received an email saying I'm getting a copy! Can't wait, ds is soooo excited! Thank you mumsnet! Smile

sanfairyanne · 12/06/2014 21:42

i loved this book. really funny.

ScarlettDarling · 13/06/2014 21:30

My kids excited to hear we're getting a copy, many thanks. We'll be back soon with our review.

Britchic · 14/06/2014 07:34

Oh, yes please, I'd absolutely love a copy! Smile

PrincessTheresaofLiechtenstein · 18/06/2014 10:41

Our copy arrived this morning, thank you! Will read it with ds over the weekend Smile

Permanentpanicmode · 18/06/2014 11:52

(Am PanicMode1 but can't log in on my laptop with that username since the password change for some reason).

I received the copy this morning and have just read it - I will give it to my 9 and 10 year olds later for their review, but mine is below.

I haven't ever read any Neil Gaiman but I know that he is revered for his work and is something of a 'rock star' novelist (if that's not too awful an oxymoron!). I had high hopes for the book because so many people rave about his talent, but I confess to being fairly disappointed. I wanted it to be laugh out loud funny, but to me, it felt like something which was written fairly quickly, and which was only brought to life by the excellent illustrations of Chris Riddell. I felt if you took the drawings away, then the story was fairly poor. I loved the premise of the book - the idea of how he explains away his delay on his trip to buy the milk, and the reveal of how he constructed the story from the props around him on his return, but for me this wasn't engaging or funny enough to want to read and re-read it to my younger ones (4 and 6).

I will however see what the target audience think when they are back from school and ask them to write their own reviews.

WildEyedAndHairier · 18/06/2014 20:45

Received our copy today, thank you! Do we review it on the reviews page linked above as well as here?

jj21 · 18/06/2014 22:35

I was sent a copy to review by Mumsnet which came today, thank you. Aliens, pirates, dinosaurs, ponies, time travel and a volcano - there is something for all three of my children in this book. For reading aloud, there are loads of opportunities to do different voices (my favourite bit) - guaranteed laughs at bedtime. So far this is ticking all the right boxes. It works for independent reading as well, although the format with no chapters will be difficult for my middle daughter to read to herself - she likes a more structured presentation with chapters and finds it hard to stop before the end if there are no clear breaks. However, my reluctant reader, dyslexic son will find this format perfect - no chapters to show how much or how little he has read, lots of detailed pictures throughout and nice big print with plenty of spaces around it. The format is not totally unlike a graphic novel, whilst much easier to read, another plus for him.

I found the story silly and unbelievable. This almost certainly means that my children (7, 9, 10) will love it. (It only arrived today, so we have yet to road test the book as a family.) The language and imagery is imaginative and the story is fast moving, despite its silliness.
So why only 3 stars - surely the comments are worth more than 'not bad at all'? I took one off for the ending, which is fairly abrupt and somewhat predictable, but my children may feel differently about the end. It was right up there with 'it was all a dream' although it is fairly clear from a few pages into the book where this is going. But I like all loose ends tied up..... What was he really doing? I think this could be the real story!

Overall, I will read this with my kids and I know they will want to read it themselves, too. For silly bedtime fun that lets a diva mum indulge her acting urges it is great, and I think it is especially good for reluctant readers for independent reading. Thank you Mumsnet for letting us enjoy this title.

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