Mary Poppins – P.L. Travers

Mary Poppins regarded them steadily, looking from one to the other as though she were making up her mind wheather she liked them or not.
“Will we do?” said Michael.
“Michael, don’t be naughty,” said his Mother.
Mary Poppins continued to reguard the four children searchingly. Then, with a long, loud sniff that seemed to indicate that she had made up her mind, she said:
“I’ll take the position.”” (page 9-10)

Title: Mary Poppins
Written by: P. L. Travers
Genre: Children’s Literature
Publisher: Harper Collins, London
Harcourt, Brace, New York
Publication Date: 1934
Paperback: 209 pages

When their old nanny unexpectedly leaves, the Banks hire Mary Poppins to be the new caretaker of their four children. The Banks children were prepared to be disobedient to this strange new nanny however, with her color changing medicine, fantastical stories, magical trinkets, floating uncle and stern glare they soon find themselves hoping she never leaves. But sooner or later the wind must change.


Now that we gotten that over with, let’s do this review thing.

Not to burst anyone’s animated penguin filled bubble, but the novel, Mary Poppins, has no charming chimney sweep, no saving of Mr. Banks, and no army of nannies blown away by the wind.

Mary Poppins is conceited and rude, Michael and Jane have a twin baby brother and sister, and there’s only one dancing penguin.

I didn’t like this book. (and to be fair, I’m not a big fan of the movie either)

Why you ask?

Because this is a



character book.

*shudders and whispers: I hate character books.*

For those who don’t know what I’m talking about, a character book is a book centered on characters changing or maturing – NOT an exciting plot.

For example: Little Women.

*horror movie screaming heard in background*

The main characters mature over the course of Mary Poppins. The twins lose their ability to understand the voices of the sun, birds, and wind (a scene I find depressing), Jane becomes more of a lady, Mary Poppins becomes ever-so-slightly nicer (AKA: says something nice about someone besides herself), and Michael – actually, I’m not sure Michael changes.

I like Michael.

Along with the lack of action, I felt this book had no plot and simply swept Mary Poppins and the Bank’s children from one charming and amusing anecdote to another.

I’m the type of person who needs explosions, or murders, or battles, or car chases, or spies (etc.) to keep me interested.

Yes, I found parts of the book funny but they were more I’m-going-to-smirk-at-this-because-I’m-bored-out-of-my-mind rather than I’m-laughing-because-this-is-funny.

I recommend this book for children who enjoy Nanny McPhee, Island of the Aunts, or any of E.B. White’s novels.

For More Information about the Book and Author Click: HERE

Age Range: 6-11


Violence: Four animals attack Michael. Michael kicks a woman and ties a dog’s tail to a fence. A lady breaks off her fingers and lets the babies eat them.

Sensuality: None

Profanity: None

Other: Mary Poppins talents are like magic. People are locked in zoo cages. Michael is disobedient.

Personal Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Cleanness Rating: 4 ½ out of 5 stars

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