Saturday, August 11, 2012
Mary Poppins in the Park - P. L. Travers
If you’ve seen the movie, I will tell you that the books are different. They’re just not quite so – well, let’s be honest – Disney-fied. They’re very British, and in this reread, I see that they’re old enough to have some very casual racism thrown in. (For instance, I thought that the eeny, meeny, miny mo song involved catching a tiger. Evidently, that’s an updated version.) So be aware of that if you decide to wade in. That being said, I remember loving these books, and they hold up pretty well. There’s an amazing sense of magic to them – in just the way that a child would think makes perfect sense.
I grabbed this particular book when I saw it used, because it contains the episode I remember best of any Mary Poppins book. There’s always in instance where they leave the real world, and in this case, they suddenly find themselves in a tiny little village that Jane had just built out of sticks and other detritus found where they were sitting in the park. I don’t quite know why that has always stuck with me so strongly, but it was definitely as delightful as I remember it.