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The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh: A Walk Through the Forest that Inspired the Hundred Acre Wood

Category: Book
By (author): Aalto, Kathryn
  GARDENING / Essays & Narratives
  GARDENING / General
  NATURE / Ecosystems & Habitats / Forests & Rainforests
  NATURE / General
Audience: general/trade
Publisher: Timber Press
Published: September 2015
Format: Book-hardcover
Pages: 308
Size: 9.00in x 6.75in x 1.00in
List Price:
$ 37.95
Our Price:
$ 36.95
(3% Off)
Available to order

Additional Notes

From The Publisher*

Featured on NPR's All Things Considered
A People Magazine Best New Book Pick

Delve into the home of the world's most beloved bear!The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh explores the magical landscapes where Pooh, Christopher Robin, and their friends live and play. The Hundred Acre Wood-the setting for Winnie-the-Pooh's adventures-was inspired by Ashdown Forest, a wildlife haven that spans more than 6,000 acres in southeast England. In the pages of this enchanting book you can visit the ancient black walnut tree on the edge of the forest that became Pooh's house, go deep into the pine trees to find Poohsticks Bridge, and climb up to the top of the enchanted Galleons Lap, where Pooh says goodbye to Christopher Robin. You will discover how Milne's childhood connection with nature and his role as a father influenced his famous stories, and how his close collaboration with illustrator E. H. Shepard brought those stories to life. This charming book also serves as a guide to the plants, animals, and places of the remarkable Ashdown Forest, whether you are visiting in person or from the comfort of your favorite armchair. In a delightful narrative, enriched with 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.

Review Quote*"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, author, The Nature Principle and Last Child in the Woods
"The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh reminds us that the Hundred Acre Wood is quite real and very much alive. Everyone who loves Pooh and Piglet and Christopher Robin will cherish this behind-the-scenes exploration of A. A Milne's world."
--Amy Stewart, author, The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World's Great Drinks

"Aalto's lovely book provides two great pleasures: a visit to the actual wild spots that inform the fictional Pooh world and a chance to slip into our memories of the books themselves."
--The Washington Post

"Lavishly illustrated with superb photographs as well as reproductions of the delightfully familiar Shepard affectionate book written with enthusiasm." 
--The Wall Street Journal

"The book is an easy, casual read, though Aalto covers a lot of ground, from biographical detail on Milne and illustrator E.H. Shepard to details on Hundred Acre Wood landmarks like the real Poohsticks Bridge or the streambed where Pooh discovered the North Pole (which he promptly picks up and takes with him)."
--The Raleigh News & Observer

"Expertly researched but with a lightness of touch that makes a fascinating read for lovers both of Ashdown Forest and the books of A.A. Milne - the magic of the ‘place' and the Pooh stories are bought together beautifully."
--Pat Buesnel, Director, Conservators of Ashdown Forest, The Ashdown Forest Centre

"An intimate guide to the forest's history, geology, animals, colours and textures. Tantalising descriptions and photographs invite us to slow our pace, look and listen."
--BBC Wildlife Magazine
"Take this book outdoors, settle into a cushy spot and listen to birds and the breeze as you follow in Winnie's footprints and see the places that are the foundations to E.H. Shepard's illustrations, which are as iconic as Milne's words." 
--The Oregonian

"If you grew up with Winnie-the-Pooh, you'll enjoy this new book. It finds all the places in Ashdown Forest that inspired the stories."
--My Weekly

"For anyone who has read and reread Milne's stories, Aalto furnishes a delightful addition to these classic tales, reawakening the childlike wonder and amusement first experienced when reading the books inspired by these locations."  
--Shelf Awareness Reader  

"Kathryn Aalto has skillfully woven together the geology, geography, history and natural history of the Forest …providing a travelogue, a guide, a nature spotting manual, and a nostalgic glimpse of the past, all rolled into a delightful and eminently readable book, profusely illustrated with photographs and drawings." 
--The Garden Window

"The Natural World of Winne-the-Pooh is for those adult readers who have spent years being intrigued by the fictional Hundred Acre Wood and want to know if their imaginations and stories are in fact based on a real place."
--The Durham Herald Sun

"The book is well researched and includes many photographs of the forest today but it is the charm of Aalto's prose that carries us into this Enchanted Place. In this book she has given us some biography, geography, and botany, but most of all a trip back in time to a loving childhood."
--The Recorder
 "Nature enthusiasts will find much to enjoy in landscape designer and historian Kathryn Aalto's The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh, where she discusses the Ashdown Forest, the real woodland setting where Milne's son often wandered with his stuffed animals in tow. Parents nostalgic for a bygone era when children lost track of time playing outdoors might consider Aalto's book a companion guide to the Pooh tales, a gentle reminder that so much of childhood is founded on magic and secret hideaway places."--Fine Books Magazine
"What [Aalto] does brilliantly is take you inside that hollow, beside the stream, into the forest, and shows how they informed [Milne's] writing."
--Alan Titchmarsh MBE, at the Garden Museum Literary Festival

"Packed with E.H. Shepard's original illustrations and hundreds of contemporary and historical photographs, this book is essential reading for all who cherish A.A. Milne's classic tales."
--Crowborough Life

"A fun book with a serious heart."
--The Northumbrian

"Aalto's book explores Milne's deep connection the natural world, and the real-life inspirations behind the stories that have lasted for generations."
--Minnesota Public Radio

"This is a beautifully produced book with an unusual premise that will delight the knowledgeable landscape designer and lay reader alike…Aalto's book enriches our understanding of the world of this iconic children's story."
--Landscape Architecture Magazine

Biographical NoteKathryn Aalto is an American landscape designer, historian, writer, and lecturer living in Exeter, England. She has master's degrees in garden history and creative nonfiction with a particular interest in literary landscapes. Before her expat life, she taught American Literature of Nature and Place in the Pacific Northwest. She is a member of the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment, the Garden Writers Association, and the Garden History Society. Her website is