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Review: French Milk

December 3, 2009

Lucy Knisley and her mother spent January of 2007 in a Paris apartment to celebrate Lucy’s mother’s 50th birthday (and Lucy’s 22nd.)  They rented a small apartment in the 5th arrondissement.  Lucy had one more semester of college and hoped to go to graduate school for cartooning.  While she was in Paris with her mother, she kept a journal and her book, French Milk is the result of that journal.

I’d seen several reviews of French Milk, but when I read the one on Beth Fish Reads, I knew I had to read this book.  French Milk is a quick read, since it’s a graphic travel memoir.  It does include photographs as well as drawings, which I found unique.  I was hooked as soon as Lucy mentioned Tintin and Milou, since our sweet dog is named after Milou.

We lived in France fifteen years before Lucy’s trip, and we never lived in Paris, but this book still brought back lots of memories for me.  This book is named after Lucy’s love of French milk – she said it came in bottles and was very fresh.  I found this interesting, because the only milk we ever saw in France came in a box – it was pretty nasty and most people wouldn’t drink it.

This book was a lot of fun and I think anyone who loves Paris or who would love to visit Paris will enjoy it.  Just for fun, here’s a picture of Vance in front of the Centre Georges Pompidou, which is mentioned in the book – you can tell from his expression what he thought of the fountains.

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46 Comments leave one →
  1. December 3, 2009 6:58 am

    Yes, I remember the review on Beth Fish Reads and I think even from Nymeth before that. It is on my list of graphic novels to read, whenever a Graphic Novel Challenge pops up. I’ve only ever been to Nice, and never to Paris. It is on my list of things to do before I die! (I could survive on cheese and wine only.)

  2. December 3, 2009 7:17 am

    Sounds like a great read. I am starting to like the whole graphic novel genre . Recently finished Persepolis , so I think I like memoirs this way 🙂 Great review.

  3. December 3, 2009 7:25 am

    This looks so cute and I love the cover. It has been awhile since I read a graphic novel, but I think I would really like this one.

  4. December 3, 2009 7:27 am

    I just loved this book – and it did indeed bring back some glorious memories of a trip to Paris oh so many years ago.

    I had no idea you had lived in France? What part and for how long? When I was in high school I was a part of a month long foreign-exchange program and we went to the Southeast part of France – Arcachon. I hope to some day go back and revisit that area.

  5. December 3, 2009 7:40 am

    I’m so glad you enjoyed this one — like a walk down memory lane!

  6. December 3, 2009 7:45 am

    This sounds wonderful! I’m adding it to my Amazon Xmas wishlist.

    What really hooks me besides the Paris angle (which is beautiful) is the idea of a mother and daughter choosing to share an adventure together. So many children that age can’t seem to flee their parents fast enough!

  7. December 3, 2009 8:04 am

    I saw Fizzy Drink’s review on this book yesterday and decided it would be a good one for me. I am going to Europe in a few months and although I won’t be going to France, this will be a good one to get me in the mood! How awesome that you were able to live in France!

  8. December 3, 2009 8:16 am

    hmmm…I want to know where they were hiding the wonderful milk when you were there.

  9. December 3, 2009 8:52 am

    What a cute picture of Vance! Interesting about the milk – I always liked cafe au lait, but who knows where the milk comes from in that?!!!

  10. December 3, 2009 8:59 am

    I knew you’d like this one! I love the photo of Vance, what a great one to share.

  11. stacybuckeye permalink
    December 3, 2009 10:34 am

    I’m adding this to my France list because we are planning a trip there in May 🙂

  12. December 3, 2009 11:20 am

    I didn’t love this one as much as you, but how fun that you lived in France! I visited Paris several times when we lived in England but never lived there.

  13. December 3, 2009 11:49 am

    I fall in the “would love to visit Paris” category. This book sounds fun.

  14. December 3, 2009 1:28 pm

    Interesting!! This is the first I am hearing about this book. Such an interesting topic though and a graphic novel to boot!

  15. December 3, 2009 2:10 pm

    I’d LOVE to read this book. Thanks for the review. And what a cute picture of Vance. I think if I read and review, I’d start my review..”as soon as I read Kathy’s review, I knew I had to read it.. ” 🙂

  16. December 3, 2009 3:59 pm

    I’ve marked this book to read a while back…glad to know that you enjoyed it!!

  17. December 3, 2009 4:46 pm

    How fun to read a book that brought back so many good memories. Now you need to write a post telling about your life in France – that’s a pretty interesting tidbit and such a long way from South Carolina!

  18. December 3, 2009 5:13 pm

    Just finished reading your review, “French Milk.” I didn’t realize it’s a memoir. I really want to read it.

  19. December 3, 2009 5:41 pm

    I love books that explore places in Europe. This one sounds great. I have never been to France, although I have several friends from there. Thanks for the review!

  20. December 3, 2009 6:05 pm

    This is the first time I’ve heard of this book. It looks really good. Great review and great photo!

  21. December 3, 2009 6:10 pm

    Even though I’ve never been to Paris, I really want to read French Milk. Thanks for the review!

  22. December 3, 2009 6:33 pm

    I’ve read several good reviews about this book, and I look forward to reading it.

  23. December 3, 2009 7:03 pm

    Milou is a great name. I love the cover on this book. Vance is adorable in that photo! 🙂

  24. December 3, 2009 7:10 pm

    How wonderful it must have been to live in France!!

  25. December 3, 2009 7:22 pm

    I read this book because of Beth Fish’s review too. I liked it!

  26. December 3, 2009 8:00 pm

    What a great way to celebrate a 50th birthday. This looks like such a fun little book. I might have to read it and then start saving now so I can rent an apartment for a month when I turn 50.

  27. December 3, 2009 8:31 pm

    it’s a cute book. great review. 🙂

  28. December 3, 2009 9:57 pm

    I have mild lactose intolerance. LOL!

  29. December 3, 2009 10:52 pm

    Vance is so cute! Did he drink boxed milk?

  30. December 4, 2009 3:49 am

    I’ve always loved anything French and most of all anything Paris! Though I’m not fond of milk, I’d like to taste milk straight from the bottle!

  31. December 4, 2009 8:44 am

    This sounds very interesting to me, as I’d love to visit France some day. It’ll probably just make me jealous that I can’t go there now, LOL. What a cute pic!


  32. December 4, 2009 10:21 am

    Oh, this looks lovely, I’ll have to keep my eyes open for it.

  33. December 4, 2009 11:13 am

    I remember the review on BethFish Reads and on Ms. Bookish. I put my name in at the library but it may be a while before I get it. It seems to be very popular. I thought it would be a good introduction for me to the worlds of graphic novels.

  34. December 4, 2009 11:58 am

    This book sounds good and I love the cover. Cute pic of Vance when he was young.

  35. December 4, 2009 5:14 pm

    What an interesting sounding read! What a great connection with your dogs name! Thats just fun!

  36. Bellezza permalink
    December 4, 2009 9:17 pm

    His expression is exactly how I feel about Paris myself. I bought my wedding dress there, in 2000, and even though I’m not a big woman, I felt huge by those petite French girls! Still, nothing can deny the beauty and glory of France.

  37. December 4, 2009 11:06 pm

    I remember the fountains at Centre Georges Pompidou, too…they’re so fun!

  38. December 5, 2009 8:10 am

    Milk in a box? Yuck! What did you eat with cookies? I guess being in France does make up for it though…

  39. December 5, 2009 3:29 pm

    I did not know you lived in France-where did you live-how did you end up living there. Do you think if I put an apartment in Paris-Ile de France on my wish list it will be granted. This book sounds wonderful. thanks I may have to go get this book this afternoon.

  40. December 5, 2009 6:40 pm

    I must read this book! And then I must visit Paris! And visit a bakery! And sip some wine at a cafe!

    Adorable picture of Vance; I’m so glad you’re pulling out these photos for your posts lately. 🙂

  41. December 5, 2009 8:23 pm

    I loved this book too! It was so fun.

  42. December 7, 2009 4:05 pm

    This book has been on my radar for quite awhile, ever since reading The Boston Bibliophile’s review. I love the title and think the book sounds amazing as well. I am glad that you liked it so much, and I had no idea you lived in France! That is really, really cool!

  43. December 7, 2009 7:10 pm

    That sounds like fun! I took a trip to Paris for my 40th birthday and we rented an apartment – it’s really a great way to spend time in the city. I’ll be adding this one to my TBR pile.

  44. December 8, 2009 9:48 am

    That is a great way to describe this book – a lot of fun! Great review.

  45. December 8, 2009 4:07 pm

    This one is mine, but it’s on Chuck’s nighstand at the moment. I will wrestle it away from him and read it, though. Can’t wait!

  46. December 20, 2009 7:22 pm

    I’ve had this on my TBR list for months! I’m committing to reading it in 2010!

    Cute, cute picture of Vance!

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