Saturday, March 8, 2008


A few days back, on one of our regular hunts at a second-hand bookstall near our house, my husband discovered a copy of The House at Pooh Corner by A A Milne. We have the first book of the series, Winnie-The-Pooh, and I had searched and searched for the other three. I was absolutely thrilled to buy this treasure for Rs 30 and I devoured it as soon as my elder daughter finished reading the book. Winnie-the-Pooh, the Bear of Very Little Brain, his human friend Christopher Robin, and their various other oddball friends like Piglet, Eeyore, Tigger, Rabbit, Owl, Kanga and Roo, inhabit a world (the Hundred Acre Wood) where normal concepts of space, time and causality are all suspended. Not a single question gets a predictable answer, yet the animals all behave true-to-type. It is like an alternate reality which gives us insights into many human traits. Most of all, they are funny and nostalgic and make you a child again. The books always bring bring a smile on my face and a lump in my throat. The Disney-fication of Pooh and his friends have made the characters brightly-painted one-dimensional goody-two-shoes. The orginal books are much more interesting, including the quirky illustrations (by E H Shepard) and spellings. If anybody can tell me where to get the other two books (When We Were Very Young and Now We Are Six), I shall be eternally grateful.

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