Book Review: “The House At Pooh Corner” by A.A. Milne

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The House at Pooh Corner is even better than Winnie-the-Pooh. That’’s saying a great deal. These books are practically perfect. Lightly, tenderly, they depict a small child’’s interior world of play, just at the time when that world starts to be pushed aside for the outer world of letters and numbers and maps and dates. It is a warm, welcoming world where toy animals come alive and have their own personalities and adventures; and where a boy named Christopher Robin –– growing up too fast –– loves them and is loved by them, and rightly so.

In Winnie-the-Pooh, Christopher Robin was at the age when a child is all questions, sucking raw knowledge out of the world around him. Now, in this wonderful sequel, he is a scholar, having actual lessons… but only in the morning. Thank goodness, this still leaves all afternoon for him to do ––oh, nothing –– with Pooh Bear, and Piglet, and Rabbit, and the deliciously depressed Eeyore, whose every droll utterance makes me laugh out loud. Plus, there’’s a new friend in the forest: a bouncy, not-too-bright bundle of laughs named Tigger.

I regret very deeply that I do not have a son or daughter of my own, because this is a book I would love to read to him or her. Only, I don’’t think I could manage the last chapter. Dads shouldn’’t be reduced to a blubbering mess by a children’’s book, at least in front of their kids. Nevertheless, I would want them to read it, as soon as they were able to do so. For I would like my children to believe, as Christopher Robin does, that the world of every child’’s imagination lives on, and remembers, and believes in that child, even after the child has forgotten to believe in it.