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Return to the Hundred Acre Wood by David Benedictus.

ReturnToTheHundredAcreWood

Title: Return to the Hundred Acre Wood.
Author: David Benedictus.
Genre: Fiction, literature, sequels, YA, children's lit, animals, fantasy.
Country: U.K.
Language: English.
Publication Date: 2009.
Summary: In the first and only authorized sequel to Milne's beloved Winnie the Pooh books, the Bear of Very Little Brain and his friends are back for one more round of adventures, 90 years since their first introduction! From the excitement of Christopher Robin's return to the curious business of learning to play cricket; from holding a Spelling Bee to starting an academy in the forest, this book features all the old friends and introduces a new character - the feisty but proper otter named Lottie.

My rating: 7.5/10.
My review:


Dedication:

You gave us Christopher Robin and Pooh
And a forest of shadows and streams,
And the whole world smiled with you, as you
Offered us your dreams.
I took up the offer and page upon page
And line upon fanciful line,
I tried to show in a different age
Your dreams are mine.


-------------------------------------------

If you want to count your honey,
You must put it in a row,
In the sun if it is sunny,
If it's snowy in the snow.

And you'll know when you have counted
How much honey you have got.
Yes, you'll know what the amount is
And so therefore what it's not.


♥ There were speckles of light on the ground where the sun had found a way through the branches, and other places where the branches had said No.

♥ Pooh was staring at his pot of honey and getting drowsy, and wondering if it was still his pot of honey, and whose pot of honey it would be if Christopher Robin didn't come, and whether one could train bees to make honey straight into pots, because then they could use the combs to brush their hair without it getting sticky. If bees have hair. And maybe he would leave an empty pot out there just in case. And would it get any hotter, and what would happen if it did...

♥ Then Piglet, a little flustered and a little hungry, explained: "Christopher Robin has had to come from wherever he's coming from, Rabbit, and it must be a very long way, because if it wasn't he would be here by now."

♥ Then he went straight back to sleep, because the moon was already shining out and it was that mysterious time between day and night when it is not easy to tell which is which or why or whether.

♥ Pooh and Piglet were sitting together over breakfast at that pleasant time of the day when you know that there is much to be done but not quite yet.

♥ When you arrived at Rabbit's house, which was a hole in the ground with a front door and a back door—very sensible—Rabbit would ask who you were and, if you were who Rabbit thought you ought to be, you would be invited in.

♥ "It's just as well there's somebody around these parts who has some sense," Rabbit used to say on these occasions, "otherwise anything might happen."

If someone asked Rabbit what that anything might be, he would reply: "Pirates, revolution, things thrown on the ground and not picked up. And you should always carry a clean handkerchief with you just in case."

♥ "Everyone should have gardens like mine. Then we could grow vegetables in rows like the Romans did."

"Did the Romans grow vegetables in rows?" asked Christopher Robin.

"Well," Rabbit replied, "if they had grown vegetables they would have been in rows, because it's too difficult to grow things in circles."

♥ Piglet said: "It's not a Census, it's a Nonsensus," and then blushed at his cleverness.

♥ "Oh, Rabbit, I have better things to do."

Rabbit went away muttering. It might have been something about No Sense of Social Responsibility, but then again it might not.

♥ He liked to be asked to do things, and he liked to be asked to do them first, and he always said "yes" because it is much more interesting when you do.

♥ He rushed out of his house and all the way to Pooh's house without stopping once. When he'd arrived and gathered his breath sufficiently, he explained what had happened... and then the world seemed to slow down a little as Pooh said comforting things like "There, there, Rabbit," and "Never mind, it's all over now," (which it probably wasn't, but that is the kind of thing you should say to a once-sensible Rabbit in distress.)

♥ When the evening came, Rabbit slept on, but Pooh didn't mind. He took an old blanket and bedded down by his honey cupboard, to reassure the pots that they would be safe.

♥ Still Owl's barometer said Set Fair, and, when he tapped it, it still said Set Fair, and when he tapped it again it fell onto the floor and the glass broke, but it still said Set Fair and still there was no rain.

♥ "But is it still there?" asked Rabbit. "And can we find it and will there be water in it if it is and if we can?"

"Possibly Not and Possibly Not and Possibly Not," said Eeyore, "and three Possiblys add up to one Probably."

♥ This suggesting met with general approval, and Pooh said, "What it is to have a Brain!"

And Christopher Robin said, "Silly old Pooh!" and dropped the bucket down the well.

♥ Late one evening, a few days after this big adventure, when Piglet was thinking of going to bed, and thinking how nice it would be if he were already in bed, and what a bore it was that he wasn't already in bed, and how he liked his yellow pajamas much better than his green ones, there was a knock at the door.

♥ If not, perhaps they would do nothing together, because there are few things nicer than doing nothing with a friend.

Piglet had a haycorn,
A nice, big round one.
Eeyore had a thistle,
Which was juicy and green.
Rabbit had a carrot
(He went out and found one.)
Which was all very well for him.

Pooh looked everywhere,
The bedroom, the kitchen,
Even in the corners of the garden shed,
But there wasn't any honey,
Not a spoonful, not a smidgeon.
"I should have stayed in bed,"
Said Pooh,
"With blankets on my head."

So, Piglet, enjoy
Your fine, round haycorn,
Eeyore, your thistle
So juicy and green,
And Rabbit eat your carrot
And I hope that you enjoy it
While Pooh grows sad and lean.

For there isn't any honey,
In the pot or in the larder,
And I even had a look in the gloomy shed.
No, there isn't any honey,
And it isn't very funny.
"I should have stayed in bed,"
Said Pooh,
"And just dreamt of honey instead."


♥ "Ooh, show it to me, show it to me!" cried Piglet, who never liked to be left out of things, except, sometimes, buckets that were going down wells.

♥ At that moment there was a loud rumble of thunder, or possibly it was a sheet of corrugated iron being shaken.

♥ "Pooh, as Prefect it is your duty to assist the teachers in Keeping Order," the otter continued.

"Yes, Lottie," agreed Pooh, trying to sound as clever as he could, and wondering if Keeping Order could mean putting your honey-pots in a very neat row and then staying at home to guard them.

Who was it hit the winning run
For the Four Legs against the Two?
Though the bat in his hand
Disappeared into sand,
Was it me?
No—
It was you.

Who was it won the cricket game
For the Four Legs against the Two?
Though his bat was as big
As a fully grown pig,
Was it me?
No—
It was you.

Do we give a fig for the little pig
And the Four Legs who beat the Two?
We give more than that
For the pig and the bat,
And the mighty hit
Which completed it,
And the mighty swish
Like a massive fish.
Was it me?
No—
It was you.
Not Pooh
But Piglet.
It was you!


♥ "I've been thinking," said Christopher Robin, "if I were poorly, what I would most want."

"To be well again," said Pooh.

♥ Then he looked triumphantly at Pooh. "Bears don't come from England."

Christopher Robin smiled and said: "Well, there's one here, and there always will be. Pooh Bear."

"Am I the only one?" asked Pooh.

Christopher Robin thought for a moment.

"Well, maybe not the only bear in England," he concluded. "But in all the world you are the one and only, incomparable Winnie-the-Pooh."

♥ Rabbit looked from side to side, and said, "He isn't here."

"I know where he isn't," said Pooh, "but there's still a lot of other places he might be."

♥ "I wonder why things have to change," murmured Piglet.

Pooh thought for a while, then said, "It gives them a chance to get better."

Christopher Robin has gone away.
He would not stay, no, he would not stay.
When will we see him? Will he be back?
Did he even have time to pack?

He left his music, but took his machine,
The best and the bluest we'd ever seen.
He left us all wondering: Gone for good?
No! He'll be back to our lovely wood.

One day perhaps when the sun is high,
Out of the blue we will hear him cry:
"Piglet and Eeyore, Rabbit and Pooh,
I'm back again to spend time with you."
Tags: 2000s, 21st century - fiction, 3rd-person narrative, adventure, animals (fiction), anthropomorphism, british - fiction, children's lit, fiction, literature, poetry in quote, sequels, sequels (by different author), sequels (to classic literature), series: winnie-the-pooh, ya
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