ChristySS, April 23, 2009 (view all comments by ChristySS)
This is a short, fun, “drawn journal” of Knisley’s month living in Paris with her Mother to celebrate their respective 50th and 22nd birthdays.
The book makes you like Lucy Knisley, and want to be in Paris with her and her Mom, but I would have liked more of her heart and thoughts, less of what she bought and ate every day. It turned into a bit of a hit list of Paris museums, neighborhoods, and cliches (Smoking? Check. Baguette, wine, cheese? Check, check, check. Shopping, yes, check again). These are things I would write in my journal to remember my personal travels, yes, but simply listing them (in graphic format) does not a story make.
Also: there was no climax, little conflict or struggle, even internal, let alone ending resolution to speak of… Which no, doesn’t always happen in life, but hey: I like a little structure and meaning in my reading (and in writing my own travels, no matter how trivial).
Knisley’s website, LucyKnisley.com (fabulous), made me want to read more of her comics and keep track of where she goes from here. It also made me hope she is challenged to further greatness (which she is obviously capable of) in her next book.
Denise Morland, October 21, 2008 (view all comments by Denise Morland)
What a charming and unique book! Lucy Knisley and her mother took a trip to Paris to celebrate milestone years for each of them. Her mom was turning 50 and Lucy was about to graduate from college. Lucy captured the trip perfectly in this illustrated journal. Eating, art, and shopping are the focus of the trip and I could almost taste the foie gras and pastries! I took a trip to Paris after college and some of the scenes Lucy drew feel just as I remember them, especially the staircase in the Louvre leading to the Winged Victory. Scattered throughout are photographs that she took on the trip and I enjoyed being able to compare her some of her drawings to photographs. In the end I felt like I had escaped to Paris for a few hours. I’ll be eagerly looking to see what Lucy Knisley comes up with next.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No (2 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
"Publishers Weekly Review"
by Publishers Weekly,
"For her 22nd birthday — and her mother's 50th — Lucy Knisley and her mother went to Paris. For more than a month, they toured the City of Lights from their fifth arrondissement flat, exploring museums and cafes, taking photographs, eating pastries and drinking French milk, which Knisley says is sweeter than its American counterpart; she compares it with the 'influence we take in from our mothers.' Knisley's first book is unquestionably a travel journal first and foremost: Lucy-the-writer is so close to Lucy-the-subject that at times the story lacks background and emotional complexity. But as a travel journal French Milk shines. Knisley's photographs from the trip punctuate sketches of her daily adventures and musings about graduating from art school, first love and having an adult relationship with her mother. Best of all are Knisley's portraits of home at the beginning and end of the book, which capture her childhood home and college life lovingly but with clear eyes. Knisley's cartoony drawings are pleasingly clean in one panel and tellingly detailed in the next. A word-of-mouth hit when it first came out in a self-published limited edition, French Milk will remind readers of their own early trips to Europe and of traveling in their 20s." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
by Simon and Schuster,
Through delightful drawings, photographs, and musings, twenty-three-year-old Lucy Knisley documents a six-week trip she and her mother took to Paris when each was facing a milestone birthday. With a quirky flat in the fifth arrondissement as their home base, they set out to explore all the city has to offer, watching fireworks over the Eiffel Tower on New Year's Eve, visiting Oscar Wilde's grave, loafing at cafés, and, of course, drinking delicious French milk. What results is not only a sweet and savory journey through the City of Light but a moving, personal look at a mother-daughter relationship.
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.