Winnie-the-Pooh returns for new children's adventure

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The Independent Culture

British children's literature favourite Winnie-the-Pooh is back for a new adventure with trusty sidekicks Tigger, Piglet and Eeyore, plus a new friend, in a book out Monday.

The stories featuring the absent-minded, honey-loving bear and his companions were originally created by AA Milne and illustrated by EH Shepard.

The last collection, "The House At Pooh Corner", came out in 1928 and the stories are available in some 50 languages around the world.

But now author David Benedictus and illustrator Mark Burgess have penned a new volume of 10 stories, "Return To The Hundred Acre Wood", which is published by Egmont and features a new character -- Lottie The Otter.

"Lottie has her own very definite ideas about how things should be done. She believes that one must always follow the correct etiquette," said Benedictus, adding that she embodies Pooh's values of "friendship and adventure".

Milne based the original stories on his son Christopher Robin's stuffed toy collection and also put the boy himself in the stories.

The tales unfold in Hundred Acre Wood, supposedly inspired by a forest near Milne's home in East Sussex, southeast England.

The characters have also featured in Disney cartoons and a wide range of spin-off merchandising for children.

The new book has the approval of the Trustees of the Pooh Properties, whose chairman Michael Brown said: "Milne's stories may have been written in 1920s England but they are set in the enchanting world of a child's imagination.

"David's new stories, including the new character, arise naturally out of that world and so, like the original stories, are timeless."