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Pooh Is Back, and He's Got Company

Officially, it's known as Ashdown Forest. But most of the world knows it as the "Hundred Acre Wood" . . . the place where a boy named Christopher Robin had adventures with a slow-witted bear named Winnie-the-Pooh.

It's been 80 years since A.A. Milne wrote the "Pooh" stories, which have become children's classics and been turned into countless movies and TV shows.

The new book, the first authorized "Pooh" sequel, isn't out until Monday, but here's a sneak preview:

"Who started it? Nobody knew. One moment there was the usual forest babble; the wind in the trees, the crow of a cock, the cheerful water in the streams. Then came the rumor: Christopher Robin is back!

"Return to the Hundred Acre Wood" (Dutton)

In the new stories Christopher Robin, who was originally based on A.A. Milne's son of the same name, returns home from school to renew his friendship with Pooh, Piglet, the bouncing Tigger and the depressive Eeyore.

And the new author, David Benedictus, has added a new character: the pearl-wearing Lottie the Otter.

But will the new book match the appeal of the original?

CBS News correspondent Mark Phillips went to Poohsticks Bridge, immortalized in Milne's "The House on Pooh Corner."

This is where Milne actually invented the game of Poohsticks for his son, where you drop a stick into the water on one side of the bridge and see how quickly it appears on the other.

(AP/Mark Burgess, © Pooh Properties)
(Left: A new character named Lottie the Otter appears in the new Winnie the Pooh book, "Return to the Hundred Acre Wood.")

It still draws visitors.

The appeal of Pooh and his animal pals goes far beyond this quaint little corner.

The original "Pooh" stories were written in 1920s England, but their draw was universal and timeless.

That Winnie-the-Pooh is still the world's favorite bear is what the publishers of the new "Pooh" stories are counting on.

For more info:
davidbenedictus.co.uk
Winnie the Pooh (Penguin Books)

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