Becca Noelle's Reviews > Mary Poppins

Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers
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Oct 12, 10

bookshelves: currently-reading
Read from October 11 to 12, 2010

This was one of the best children's books that I have read in a long time. I have never seen the Disney movie or read the book, but I have seen the Broadway play in Chicago. I thought it was awesome and I loved the story, but I definitely liked the book a lot better.

I've noticed that the book is entirely different from the production that I saw. For some reason, the book seems so much more detailed and magical. In the book, you get a much different perspective on Mary Poppins than I observed in the play. It is such an adventure story. The children seem so mesmerized by Mary's magic and the text really supports that.

"Jane and Michael sat hugging themselves and watching. It was all so surprising that they had nothing to say. But they knew...something strange and wonderful had happened..." (14)

I remember the part in the play where Mary Poppins empties her carpet bag. They used an illusion and Mary brought out a number of obscure items, including a huge coat rack. It seemed like more of a joke, rather than a sense of magic.

The book, on the other hand, describes it so simply. It makes the scene more realistic and exciting. When Michael sees that the bag is empty, Mary simply says, "Nothing in it did you say?" She proceeds to take out everyday items that she would actually use. She does not make it seem like a big deal, rather that magic and whimsy are a part of her every day life.

The adventures Mary takes them on are often spur of the moment. The unexpected trip to the zoo and tea party on the ceiling reminded me a lot of the Alice in Wonderland book. It seems like Mary Poppins brings the children into their own fun and unique little world. Which is like Alice's experiences- outrageous and imaginative.

It reminds me of myself when I was little, running around doing something new everyday, always feeling excited to play with the help of my imagination. On page 182, when Mary tells Michael and Jane that its time to go home and "Jane pleads, five minutes longer!" I thought of my dad saying "Time for bed." I would hold up my five fingers and beg for 5 minutes longer of whatever that days adventure was.

One way I can relate this to the real world is to focus on Michael and Jane's relationship with their parents. I think the book makes it obvious that they are both living in completely different worlds, and that's common in the real world. I feel like a lot of time parents do not know whats going on with their children. I'm sure if Mr. and Mrs. Banks knew about everywhere their children had been, they wouldn't have been happy.

My favorite quote from the book was "There is something strange and extraordinary about her--something that was frightening but at the same time most exciting." (12) It just shows how awesome Mary seemed to the children. What was your favorite quote?
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