Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers is a classic novel that I never had the chance to read as a child! I have, of course, loved the film with Julie Andrews since the age of 10, when I first saw it. The enchanting scenes and stern loving that Mary Poppins offered really spoke to me as a child. The novel, though different from the much beloved film, did not disappoint this reader.
Blown in by a strong wind, Mary Poppins is given a job as nanny to the four children who reside at Number Seventeen Cherry Hill Lane. The children are Jane, Michael, and twins: John & Barbara. The twins are still infants and while I understood the need to cut their characters from the movie, I found that they added a lot to the novel version. They were funny and had many deep thoughts and ideas about Mary Poppins.
Jane and Michael were just as rambunctious as their film-counterparts, though they minded Mary much better in the book. The birthday party at the zoo and the trip to buy gingerbread stars from Mrs. Corry & her two daughters were my favorite bits of their adventures… and BOTH were really lacking/missing from the film version.
All in all, I REALLY enjoyed this novel. So much so that I want to read this to my children before they ever catch a glimpse of the film. It was magical and fun and everything a children’s novel should be. It reminds me of the novel Peter Pan! Fun and a bit dark, like life. DEFINITELY recommend reading this classic if you haven’t picked it up yet!