Friday, February 10, 2012

55 Books in a Year: Book #7 Mary Poppins

"Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down" and Mary Poppins by PL Travers is a delightful spoonful of sugar in movie and in book form.

When I say things like what I'm about say I feel like I spent my childhood in a dark cavern, but I'm going to say it anyway. I did not read this book as a little kid, this book was never read to me, I did not even know this book was a series until I decided to download it to read on my Nook.

This book is just as delightful and enchanting as the movie (without the singing, of course). However, it is a bit different. There's a chapter where Michael wakes up on the wrong side of the bed and is given a compass which Poppins and the children use to visit every corner of the Earth. My favorite chapter that I didn't already know the story to involves the littlest Banks children (they are twins John and Barbara), they talk to Poppins, each other and the bird that lives outside their window and refuse to acknowledge that when they turn one not only will they not be able to talk to the bird and others anymore, but they will also forget they ever could. It is an excellent example of the bittersweetness of growing up.

I can't wait to read this book to Lila Jane, we've already seen the movie.

I have found out that if I want to read about all the things in the movie that I must read all of the books. There are eight and they are titled:

from Wikipedia

Mary Poppins, published 1934

The first book introduces the Banks family, consisting of Mr. Banks and Mrs. Banks and their children Jane, Michael, and baby twins John and Barbara. When the children's nanny, Katie Nana, storms out in a huff, Mary Poppins arrives at their home, complete with her traveling carpetbag, blown in by a very strong wind. She accepts the job, and the children soon learn that their nanny, though she is stern, vain, and usually cross, has a magical touch that makes her wonderful. 

Mary Poppins Comes Back, published 1935

Nothing has been right since Mary Poppins left Number Seventeen Cherry Tree Lane. One day, when Mrs. Banks sends the children out to the park, Michael flies his kite up into the clouds. Everyone is surprised when it comes down bringing Mary Poppins as a passenger, who returns to the Banks home and takes charge of the children once again. 

Mary Poppins Opens the Door, published 1943

When Mary last left the Banks children in Cherry Tree Lane, she took a "return ticket, just in case." In the third book, she returns to the park in front of Cherry Tree Lane the way she came, falling with fireworks. Once again she takes up nanny duties in the Banks household and leads Jane, Michael, John, and Barbara on various adventures. 

Mary Poppins in the Park, published 1952

This fourth book contains six adventures of the Banks children with Mary Poppins during their outings into the park along Cherry Tree Lane. Chronologically the events in this book occurred during the second or third book (Mary Poppins Comes Back and Mary Poppins Opens the Door respectively). 

Mary Poppins From A to Z, published 1962

Twenty-six vignettes — one for each letter of the alphabet — weave unexpected tales of Mary Poppins, the Banks children, and other characters from Travers's previous novels. Each vignette is filled with fun and unusual words that start with the featured letter.

Mary Poppins in the Kitchen, published 1975

Mary Poppins comes to the rescue when the Banks' family cook has to go on an unexpected leave, teaching the young Banks children the basics of cooking in the process. The book includes recipes.

Mary Poppins in Cherry Tree Lane, published 1982

Mary Poppins takes the Banks children on yet another memorable adventure, this time on the magical Midsummer's Eve. 

Mary Poppins and the House Next Door, published 1988

The residents of Cherry Tree Lane are distressed to learn that their beloved Number Eighteen, an empty house for which each tenant has created an imaginary, wished-for tenant, is about to be occupied by Mr. Banks's childhood governess, Miss Andrew — otherwise known as the Holy Terror. Her dreaded arrival brings a pleasant surprise as well, for Luti, a boy from the South Seas, has accompanied her as both servant and student. 

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