By Rebecca Reed
Celebrating our love of Winnie the Pooh day and of course A.A Milne’s birthday, here at World of Books we love nothing more than a classic and what could be a better classic than one which has gone through each generation since its creation in 1926? That is indeed A.A Milne’s glorious collection of Winnie the Pooh stories.
A.A Milne is forever associated with the loveable bear and unfortunately because of this many of his other works are largely forgotten. Before Winnie the Pooh was on the scene he wrote The Red House Mystery which is a highly rated whodunit (Good Reads) and many plays either original or adaptations such as Toad at Toad Hall from the very well-known Wind and the Willows.
“Friendship,” said Christopher Robin “is a very comforting thing to have.”
― A.A. Milne
The collection of Winnie the Pooh stories are surrounded by the underlining message of friendship and the support they give you in all moments of your life. Let’s not forget the original illustrations, all created by Ernest H Shepard, are simply breath-taking and as memorable as the stories themselves. I was bought the complete works of Pooh at a very young age by my parents so I could enjoy them as I grew up and perhaps to read to further generations so I will never forget the illustration of the little yellow bear floating away with a blue balloon. In fact, Winnie the Pooh was such a big part of my childhood (due to my mother’s love for all things Piglet and Pooh) that it led to an obsession with ‘Pooh Sticks’ at every bridge we came across, whilst out in the countryside.
A.A Milne had a tremendous life, he served in the two World Wars, as an officer and then a Captain of the Home Guard. His son Christopher Robin Milne and his toys were the triggers to inspire the wonderful world of Hundred Acre Wood. You can visit Pooh’s corner in Hartfield, East Sussex today. You can also visit the New York Public Library where Christopher Robin Milne’s original toys are kept on display, all except Roo, who was lost in the 1930’s.
A.A Milne and his wife Dorothy “Daphne” Milne bought a country home in 1925. After the Second World War, he retired back to Cotchford Farm. After suffering from a stroke he had brain surgery in 1952, however this left him in a wheelchair for the remainder of his life.
He once noted the below:-
“A writer wants something more than money for his work: he wants permanence.”
– A. A. Milne
Thanks to the overwhelming love of Winnie the Pooh at least he was granted that.
His wife Daphne released the film rights to Walt Disney on June 16th, 1961 and through Disney, you have seen Winnie the Pooh grow to be the big character he is today. With many feature length animated movies under his belt and oodles of merchandise that would fill Pooh’s corner, dare I say it, he may be mightier than the original mouse!
So let’s celebrate Winnie the Pooh day with a pot of honey and a game of Pooh Sticks. Thank you A.A Milne for bringing such an enchanting world to our imaginations.
Image licenced under Creative Commons: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/