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Mary Poppins Comes Back

Mary Poppins Comes Back

4.3 6
by P. L. Travers, Mary Shepard (Illustrator)

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Pulled down from the clouds at the end of a kite string, Mary Poppins is back. In Mary’s care, the Banks children meet the King of the Castle and the Dirty Rascal, visit the upside-down world of Mr. Turvy and his bride, Miss Topsy, and spend a breathless afternoon above the park, dangling from a clutch of balloons.


Pulled down from the clouds at the end of a kite string, Mary Poppins is back. In Mary’s care, the Banks children meet the King of the Castle and the Dirty Rascal, visit the upside-down world of Mr. Turvy and his bride, Miss Topsy, and spend a breathless afternoon above the park, dangling from a clutch of balloons.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"When Mary Poppins is about, her young charges can never tell where the real world merges into make-believe. Neither can the reader, and that is one of the hallmarks of good fantasy."—The New York Times
Children's Literature - Heidi Hauser Green
The Banks’ household is unraveling fast, continuing the downward spiral tipped off by the departure of Mary Poppins at the end of the first book of the “Mary Poppins” series. Mrs. Banks is at the end of her rope and sends the children to the park, where they fly a kite. They are surprised when a tug of the string brings their much-loved nanny down from the clouds. It is a magical return—and one she denies. Jane, Michael, and the twins are all too glad for the adventures that she brings, even without Mary Poppins’ acknowledgement of them. The adventures here are edited from the original to correct some population stereotypes, but maintain the elements of fantasy. Readers will enjoy letting their imaginations run wild; however, some may have difficulty with gender stereotypes that were common when these stories were originally published. Other books in the series include Mary Poppins, Mary Poppins Opens the Door, and Mary Poppins in the Park. Reviewer: Heidi Hauser Green; Ages 8 to 12.

Product Details

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
Mary Poppins Series
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.40(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range:
10 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

The ­Kite

It was one of those mornings when everything looks very neat and bright and shiny, as though the world had been tidied up ­overnight.

In Cherry-Tree Lane the houses blinked as their blinds went up, and the thin shadows of the cherry-trees fell in dark stripes across the sunlight. But there was no sound anywhere, except for the tingling of the Ice Cream Man’s bell as he wheeled his cart up and ­down.

“stop me and buy ­one”

said the placard in front of the cart. And presently a Sweep came round the corner of the Lane and held up his black sweepy ­hand.

The Ice Cream Man went tingling up to ­him.

“Penny one,” said the Sweep. And he stood leaning on his bundle of brushes as he licked out the Ice Cream with the tip of his tongue. When it was all gone he gently wrapped the cone in his handkerchief and put it in his ­pocket.

“Don’t you eat cones?” said the Ice Cream Man, very ­surprised.

“No. I collect them!” said the Sweep. And he picked up his brushes and went in through Admiral Boom’s front gate because there was no Tradesman’s ­Entrance.
The Ice Cream Man wheeled his cart up the Lane again and tingled, and the stripes of shadow and sunlight fell on him as he ­went.

“Never knew it so quiet before!” he murmured, gazing from right to left, and looking out for ­customers.

At that very moment a loud voice sounded from Number Seventeen. The Ice Cream Man cycled hurriedly up to the gate, hoping for an ­order.

“I won’t stand it! I simply will not stand any more!” shouted Mr. Banks, striding angrily from the front door to the foot of the stairs and back ­again.

“What is it?” said Mrs. Banks anxiously, hurrying out of the dining­-­room. “And what is that you are kicking up and down the ­hall?”

Mr. Banks lunged out with his foot and something black flew half­-­way up the ­stairs.

“My hat!” he said between his teeth. “My Best Bowler ­Hat!”

He ran up the stairs and kicked it down again. It spun for a moment on the tiles and fell at Mrs. Banks’ ­feet.

“Is anything wrong with it?” said Mrs. Banks, nervously. But to herself she wondered whether there was not something wrong with Mr. ­Banks.

“Look and see!” he roared at ­her.

Trembling, Mrs. Banks stooped and picked up the hat. It was covered with large, shiny, sticky patches and she noticed it had a peculiar ­smell.

She sniffed at the ­brim.

“It smells like boot­-­polish,” she ­said.

“It is boot­-­polish,” retorted Mr. Banks. “Robertson Ay has brushed my hat with the boot­-­brush—in fact, he has polished ­it.”

Mrs. Banks’ mouth fell with ­horror.

“I don’t know what’s come over this house,” Mr. Banks went on. “Nothing ever goes right—hasn’t for ages! Shaving water too hot, breakfast coffee too cold. And now—this!”

He snatched his hat from Mrs. Banks and caught up his ­bag.

“I am going!” he said. “And I don’t know that I shall ever come back. I shall probably take a long sea­-­voyage.”

Then he clapped the hat on his head, banged the front door behind him and went through the gate so quickly that he knocked over the Ice Cream Man, who had been listening to the conversation with ­interest.

“It’s your own fault!” he said crossly. “You’d no right to be there!” And he went striding off towards the City, his polished hat shining like a jewel in the ­sun.

The Ice Cream Man got up carefully and, finding there were no bones broken, he sat down on the kerb, and made it up to himself by eating a large Ice ­Cream. . . .

“Oh, dear!” said Mrs. Banks as she heard the gate slam. “It is quite true. Nothing does go right nowadays. First one thing and then another. Ever since Mary Poppins left without a Word of Warning everything has gone ­wrong.”

She sat down at the foot of the stairs and took out her handkerchief and cried into ­it.

And as she cried, she thought of all that had happened since that day when Mary Poppins had so ­suddenly and so strangely ­disappeared.

“Here one night and gone the next—most upsetting!” said Mrs. Banks ­gulping.

Nurse Green had arrived soon after and had left at the end of a week because Michael had spat at her. She was followed by Nurse Brown who went out for a walk one day and never came back. And it was not until later that they discovered that all the silver spoons had gone with ­her.

And after Nurse Brown came Miss Quigley, the Governess, who had to be asked to leave because she played scales for three hours every morning before breakfast and Mr. Banks did not care for ­music.

“And then,” sobbed Mrs. Banks to her handkerchief, “there was Jane’s attack of measles, and the bath­-­room geyser bursting and the Cherry-Trees ruined by frost and——”

“If you please, m’m——!” Mrs. Banks looked up to find Mrs. Brill, the cook, at her ­side.

“The kitchen flue’s on fire!” said Mrs. Brill ­gloomily.

“Oh, dear. What next?” cried Mrs. Banks. “You must tell Robertson Ay to put it out. Where is ­he?”

“Asleep, m’m, in the broom­-­cupboard. And when that boy’s asleep, nothing’ll wake him—not if it’s an Earthquake, or a regiment of Tom­-­toms,” said Mrs. Brill, as she followed Mrs. Banks down the kitchen ­stairs.

Between them they managed to put out the fire but that was not the end of Mrs. Banks’ ­troubles.

She had no sooner finished luncheon than a crash, followed by a loud thud, was heard from ­upstairs.

“What is it now?” Mrs. Banks rushed out to see what had ­happened.

“Oh, my leg, my leg!” cried Ellen, the ­housemaid.

She sat on the stairs, surrounded by broken china, groaning ­loudly.

“What is the matter with it?” said Mrs. Banks ­sharply.

“Broken!” said Ellen dismally, leaning against the ­banisters.

“Nonsense, Ellen! You’ve sprained your ankle, that’s ­all!”

bidi-font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: 'Times New Roman'" But Ellen only groaned ­again.

“My leg is broken! What will I do?” she wailed, over and over ­again.

At that moment the shrill cries of the Twins sounded from the nursery. They were fighting for the possession of a blue celluloid duck. Their screams rose thinly above the voices of Jane and Michael, who were painting pictures on the wall and arguing as to whether a green horse should have a purple or a red tail. And through this uproar there sounded, like the steady beat of a drum, the groans of Ellen the housemaid. “My leg is broken! What shall I ­do?”

“This,” said Mrs. Banks, rushing upstairs, “is the Last ­Straw!”

She helped Ellen to bed and put a cold water bandage round her ankle. Then she went up to the ­Nursery.

Jane and Michael rushed at ­her.

“It should have a red tail, shouldn’t it?” demanded ­Michael.

“Oh, Mother! Don’t let him be so stupid. No horse has a red tail, has ­it?”

“Well, what horse has a purple tail? Tell me that!” he ­screamed.

My duck!” shrieked John, snatching the duck from ­Barbara.

“Mine, mine, mine!” cried Barbara, snatching it back ­again.

“Children! Children!” Mrs. Banks was wringing her hands in despair. “Be quiet or I shall Go ­Mad!”

There was silence for a moment as they stared at her with interest. Would she really? They wondered. And what would she be like if she ­did?

“Now,” said Mrs. Banks. “I will not have this ­behaviour. Poor Ellen has hurt her ankle, so there is nobody to look after you. You must all go into the Park and play there till Tea­-­time. Jane and Michael, you must look after the little ones. John, let Barbara have the duck now and you can have it when you go to bed. Michael, you may take your new kite. Now, get your hats, all of ­you!”

“But I want to finish my horse——” began Michael ­crossly.

“Why must we go to the Park?” complained Jane. “There’s nothing to do ­there!”

“Because,” said Mrs. Banks, “I must have peace. And if you will go quietly and be good children there will be cocoanut cakes for ­tea.”

And before they had time to break out again, she had put on their hats and was hurrying them down the ­stairs.

“Look both ways!” she called as they went through the gate, Jane pushing the Twins in the perambulator and Michael carrying his ­kite.

They looked to the right. There was nothing ­coming.

They looked to the left. Nobody there but the Ice Cream Man who was jingling his bell at the end of the ­Lane.

Jane hurried ­across.

Copyright 1935 by P. L. ­Travers
Copyright renewed 1963 by P. L. ­Travers

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the ­publisher.

Requests for permission tomake copies of any part of the work should be mailed to the following address: Permissions Department, Harcourt, Inc., 6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, Florida 32887­-­6777.

Meet the Author

P. L. Travers (1899-1996) was a drama critic, travel essayist, reviewer, lecturer, and the creator of Mary Poppins. Ms. Travers wrote several other books for adults and children, but it is for the character of Mary Poppins that she is best remembered.

MARY SHEPARD (1910-2000) was the daughter of Ernest Shepard, illustrator of the Winnie the Pooh books and The Wind in the Willows. She illustrated P. L. Travers's Mary Poppins books for more than fifty years.

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Mary Poppins Comes Back 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
andreatodd More than 1 year ago
I've loved the Mary Poppins books since I first encountered them, around age 7. They are all wonderful, and the first three ("Mary Poppins," "Mary Poppins Comes Back," and "Mary Poppins Opens the Door") are among my favorite books of all time. I read them aloud to my children, who also loved them. And I tried to protect my children from the Disney movie, which was my first experience of having a beloved book changed unrecognizably by its film adaptation. I'll never forget my shock and dismay... But anyway, these are all books that are a joy to read, and, since each chapter is essentially a story in itself, ideal for a bedtime read-aloud. Highly recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a nice book i <3 mary poppins she is rude in a funny happy way this book realy toched me
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anyone who loves Mary Poppins should definitely read this book. Mary Poppins continues her adventures with the Banks' family and new characters (usually related to Mary Poppins in some fashion) appear. A cute book for young or old alike. The artwork is worth a mention, too. Very well done. The book is short but worth it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book EVER!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ugh! When Jane and Michel gave mary popins there money from there farther she just sad: Hmph! And stuff them in her pocket! I just sometimes wish i could chock her! And when she made mrs. Lark leave, she blamed it on the childern. Sob. Oh! She makes me want to cry!
Janaisha Curet More than 1 year ago