Winnie-The-Pooh with Introduction … TO DEATH!

Here’s a true story that happened to a family of my acquaintance. It’s a cautionary tale about slapping introductions and other non-essential info into children’s books to make them more adult-friendly.

Boy of 4 or 5 years of age is learning to read and loves Winnie-The-Pooh.

Boy is aware that A.A. Milne wrote the books for his son Christopher Robin.

Boy gets a fancy new Pooh collection with color pictures for his birthday.

Boy reads on either the jacket flap or the introduction a little bio of A.A. Milne that ends with “Milne died in 19xx.”

Boy wails, “Christopher Robin’s Daddy died!”

You see, to the boy Christopher Robin is still a boy, too, and A.A. Milne is (or, rather, was) a timeless, magical figure.

(Illustrators, you’ll be pleased to know that the boy was also reported to lament the loss of E.H. Shepard, whose year of death was also given.)

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One Response

  1. That’s awful … I get annoyed by the incessant footnotes in certain editions of classic books, which usually contain information that you really should have known, but that’s nothing like this.

    Poor kid … I think that a lot of these publishers forget that their audience doesn’t want to know about Milne passing away.

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