Read Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers Free Online
Book Title: Mary Poppins|
The author of the book: P.L. Travers
ISBN 13: 9780613054447
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 417 KB
Edition: Turtleback Books
Date of issue: September 15th 1997
Read full description of the books Mary Poppins:Reread for our classics discussion on the blog! http://www.themidnightgarden.net/2015...
If you've never read Mary Poppins, you're missing out on one of the great classics of children's literature. It's been a long time since I've read these books that I loved so much as a child, but I immediately felt as though I was visiting with old friends.
The thing of it is, I'm quite sure that I felt this way the very first time I read the book as well. P.L. Travers writes incredibly imaginative stories that tickle the fancy and will surprise even the most jaded reader. Many of the elements and events will be familiar to fans of the very fun Disney film (which did a wonderful job of capturing the spirit of the book while making the story their own), such as the chalk picture drawings, tea on the ceiling, and the Bird Woman. But readers also get to experience the magic of gingerbread wrapped in gilt paper stars that later get glued to the night sky, a funny night zoo in which the main attractions are people, the awful Bad Tuesday in which Michael is hateful to everybody because he just can't help it, and the tale of Mrs. Lark's Andrew, a silky little pampered pet who wants nothing more than to be a common dog.
My favorite chapter in this book, however, is the bittersweet story of the twin babies John and Barbara, who delight in talking to the wind and the birds who visit them in their nursery. When they learn that one day they will no longer understand the language of their dearest friends, they weep piteously and are determined that they will never forget and they will never be changed. Not long afterwards, the jeering Starling comes to visit and wheedles a bit of treat from them, but they don't respond.
The Starling stared at her. "Ha!" he said suddenly, and turned and looked inquiringly at Mary Poppins. Her quiet glance met his in a long look.
Then with a darting movement, the Starling flew over over to John's cot and alighted on the rail. John had a large woolly lamb hugged close in his arms. "What's my name? What's my name? What's my name?" cried the Starling in a shrill, anxious voice.
"Er-rumph!" said John, opening his mouth and putting the leg of the woolly lamb into it.
With a little shake of his head the Starling turned away. "So--it's happened," he said quietly to Mary Poppins.
The Staring gazed dejectedly for a moment at the Twins. Then he shrugged his speckled shoulders. "Oh, well--I knew it would. Always told them so. But they wouldn't believe it." He remained silent for a little while, staring into the cots. Then he shook himself vigorously.
"Well, well. I must be off. Back to my chimney. It will need spring cleaning, I'll be bound." He flew on to the window-sill and paused, looking back over his shoulder.
"It'll seem funny without them, though. Always liked talking to them--so I did. I shall miss them." He brushed a wing quickly across his eyes.
Written with brisk humor and deep tenderness, it's passages like these that stir a sweet ache in anyone who still longs to respond to the lovely, wondrous call of childhood.
Read information about the authorPamela Lyndon Travers was an Australian novelist, actress and journalist, popularly remembered for her series of children's novels about mystical nanny Mary Poppins.
She was born to bank manager Travers Robert Goff and Margaret Agnes. Her father died when she was seven, and although "epileptic seizure delirium" was given as the cause of death, Travers herself "always believed the underlying cause was sustained, heavy drinking".
Travers began to publish her poems while still a teenager and wrote for The Bulletin and Triad while also gaining a reputation as an actress. She toured Australia and New Zealand with a Shakespearean touring company before leaving for England in 1924. There she dedicated herself to writing under the pen name P. L. Travers.
In 1925 while in Ireland, Travers met the poet George William Russell who, as editor of The Irish Statesman, accepted some of her poems for publication. Through Russell, Travers met William Butler Yeats and other Irish poets who fostered her interest in and knowledge of world mythology. Later, the mystic Gurdjieff would have a great effect on her, as would also have on several other literary figures.
The 1934 publication of Mary Poppins was Travers' first literary success.Five sequels followed, as well as a collection of other novels, poetry collections and works of non-fiction.
The Disney musical adaptation was released in 1964. Primarily based on the first novel in what was then a sequence of four books, it also lifted elements from the sequel Mary Poppins Comes Back. Although Travers was an adviser to the production she disapproved of the dilution of the harsher aspects of Mary Poppins's character, felt ambivalent about the music and disliked the use of animation to such an extent that she ruled out any further adaptations of the later Mary Poppins novels. At the film's star-studded premiere, she reportedly approached Disney and told him that the animated sequence had to go. Disney responded by saying "Pamela, the ship has sailed." and walked away. Travers would never again agree to another Poppins/Disney adaptation, though Disney made several attempts to persuade her to change her mind.
So fervent was Travers' dislike of the Walt Disney adaptation and the way she felt she had been treated during the production, that well into her 90s, when she was approached by producer Cameron Mackintosh to do the stage musical, she only acquiesced upon the condition that only English born writers (and specifically no Americans) and no one from the film production were to be directly involved with the creative process of the stage musical. This specifically excluded the Sherman Brothers from writing additional songs for the production even though they were still very prolific. Original songs and other aspects from the 1964 film were allowed to be incorporated into the production however. These points were stipulated in her last will and testament.
Travers was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1977. She died in London in 1996.
Although Travers never married, she adopted a boy when she was in her late 30s.
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