The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh
“Beautifully written and thoroughly researched, The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh provides an intimate look into the magic and inspirations behind Milne’s stories, while reminding us of the joy children experience through nature” — Richard Louv, The Nature Principle and Last Child in the Woods
When you read passages from Winnie-the-Pooh, it’s hard not to feel nostalgic. You might remember your parents reading you the stories, or you might remember reading them to your kids. Maybe you remember the original Disney movie or the stuffed bear that sat on your bed. In one way or another, we have all been touched by A. A. Milne’s beloved bear. But did you know that the Hundred Acre Wood—the place where Pooh, Tigger, and Piglet lived and played—is based on a real place? Did you know that you could actually visit Poohstick’s Bridge? That The Floody Place is real?
The setting for Winnie-the-Pooh’s adventures was inspired by the Ashdown Forest, a wildlife haven that spans more than 6,000 acres in southeast England. In The Natural World of Winne-the-Pooh, garden historian Kathryn Aalto explores how this magical place moved both A. A. Milne and E. H Shepherd to create the cherished tales that remain not only relevant, but wildly popular. Aalto takes readers through an exploration of the real landscapes, shares iconic moments from the books and situates them in the places that exist today, and celebrates the interplay of landscape and literature. In a delightful narrative, enriched with E. H. Shepard’s original illustrations, hundreds of color photographs, and Milne’s own words, you will rediscover your favorite characters and the magical place they called home.
Guest Writing & News
“New Book Explores the Real Landscapes of Ashdown Forest Which Inspired A. A Milne,” Crowborough Life, 27 Sept 2015.
Kathryn Aalto, “Keep Out of Doors As Much As You Can,” The Wild Network, 24 Sept 2015.
Kathryn Aalto, “What Would Pooh Do? A Walk Through a Forest that Helped Shape (and Could Still Help Save) the Natural Childhood,” Children and Nature Network, 23 Sept 2015.
“Words and Pictures,” Interview with Kathryn Aalto, Society of Book Writers and Illustrators, 29 July 2015
Other writing on The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh can be found in Devon Life, Sussex Life, BBC Countryfile Magazine, and many other sources.