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Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins #1) by P.L. Travers, Mary Shepard (Illustrator)

Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins, #1)
From the moment Mary Poppins arrives at Number Seventeen Cherry-Tree Lane, everyday life at the Banks house is forever changed. This classic series tells the story of the world's most beloved nanny, who brings enchantment and excitement with her everywhere she goes. Featuring the charming original cover art by Mary Shepard, these new editions are sure to delight readers of all ages.

It all starts when Mary Poppins is blown by the east wind onto the doorstep of the Banks house. She becomes a most unusual nanny to Jane, Michael, and the twins. Who else but Mary Poppins can slide up banisters, pull an entire armchair out of an empty carpetbag, and make a dose of medicine taste like delicious lime-juice cordial? A day with Mary Poppins is a day of magic and make-believe come to life!
Summary & Cover taken from
Length: 224 pages (Hardcover)
Available Formats: Print/E-book/Audio
Publication Date: 1934
Last weekend I participated in a read-a-thon in one of my Goodreads groups and I was choosing to read some children's classics that I haven't read before and of course I just had to give Mary Poppins a try. I vaguely remember my dad reading it to me as a kid but most of my memories are of the movie version of the book so I thought it was high time I give the book a try.
Sadly,  my expectations of the fun, bubbly and witty Mary Poppins were met with disappointment. The book follows Mary Poppins from the moment she arrives at Number Seventeen Cherry-Tree Lane to take become a nanny for the four Banks children to the moment she suddenly leaves them in the end of the book.
I have to say that I was expecting something altogether different than what I got from reading this children's classic and perhaps it's because as we age the books we read as children lose some of their magic as some of our inherent innocence is taken from us in the aging process. I didn't find the first book in the Mary Poppins series to be an enjoyable read except for the parts where Mary Poppins wasn't in it.
I thought that Mary Poppins was a dour brute in a nanny suite. She was rude, unkind and completely self absorbed and thought she was the best at everything. I found that rather than lift the book up and make it a fun and enjoyable read she brought it down.
Despite the fact that I couldn't really stand Mary Poppins I did enjoy reading about the other characters in the book and I especially loved the twins as I thought they were little darlings. Of course I also liked the characters that Mary Poppins introduced the children too and they funny, sweet and of course eccentric. Also the writing was very good. Just because I didn't like the main character it doesn't mean the author wasn't talented she was immensely talented in fact and the story flowed wonderfully.
Overall, while I did enjoy all but one aspect of the novel I just can't get past my dislike for the literary Mary Poppins and I much prefer the film version to this. However I do plan on adding these to the list of books I keep in case I ever have children because I think this is one that kids will enjoy as long as they haven't seen the movie I think and I still plan on reading the entire series and I just hope I come to like it more as it goes on.
I would recommend this to anyone who hasn't read it yet and just because I found it lacking that's not to say that you will. It is one I think everyone should give a chance and prove that just because a book is "old" or written in a by gone era that it should not be forgot and left to collect dust.
It Was Okay!
To purchase the book via Chapters Indigo CLICK HERE
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To purchase the book via The Book Depository CLICK HERE
To purchase the book via Barnes & Noble CLICK HERE



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  2. I liked the series when I was a kid though they are very different from the movie. P.L. Travers hated the movie version because it wasn't what she had intended. You might like The Collected Tales of Nurse Matilda better. The Nanny McPhee movies were based on those stories.


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