When you go out to get milk for your cereal, you expect a bit of a walk and at worst, a surly clerk at the cash register. The narrator of Fortunately the Milk and his sister are in dire need of milk for their breakfast, and their father dutifully agrees to go get some from the store. It takes him ages to get back, and when he does, his explanation boggles the mind.
I certainly never thought to look for aliens, time travelling dinosaurs, cannibals, pirates, and vampires, but then again I usually eat my cereal without milk. I like the crunch.
Honest disclaimer? Skottie Young's art is the only reason I bought this. He's the only reason I'm giving this book stars.
This is a short quick read that doesn't quite seem to know its target market. Certainly, it's packaged like a children's book, with Skottie Young's wonderful illustrations and many fantastical situations that the protagonist finds himself in. Yet sometimes, the characters would make comments that would be completely lost on children, Gaiman's little nudge-nudge wink-wink to the older audiences he probably knew would buy the book because his name was on the cover.
Which isn't bad in of itself, but the treatment was slapdash. Adventure Time does a better job with its smooth and completely natural injections of adult humor. I wonder if Gaiman tested this story with actual children.
Still the story was solid enough. You can't quite go wrong with time travelling dinosaurs.
More often than I would have liked -- the whimsicality of the plot seemed too forced. I don't mean to be cynical, but even a child would have scoffed at some of the things that happened here. I've read children's books to children and the experience taught me that we tend to underestimate how rational they can be about certain things.
I don't understand why this book fell flat -- Neil Gaiman did such a splendid job with Coraline at not talking down to his audience. Why couldn't he have done the same with Fortunately, the Milk?
Thank god Skottie Young continuously saved the day with his art. Most of the time I spent drinking up every line and stroke of his drawings and the magnificently comic way he illustrates the most fanciful of creatures. If anything, I hope this book at least opens up plenty of projects for him in the future, because the world needs more Skottie Young.