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.)


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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