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The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
The Secret Garden
4.00 10
This kindle book also includes bonus annotations:- information on the historical context of the book- biography of the author- literary critiqueThe Secret Garden is a novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It was initially published in serial format starting in autumn 1910; the book was first... show more
This kindle book also includes bonus annotations:- information on the historical context of the book- biography of the author- literary critiqueThe Secret Garden is a novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It was initially published in serial format starting in autumn 1910; the book was first published in its entirety in 1911.Its working title was Mistress Mary, in reference to the English nursery rhyme Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary. It is now one of Burnett's most popular novels, and is considered to be a classic of children's literature.The main character of this story is Mary Lennox. She has been born to rich British parents that are currently living in India. Her parents were busy with extravagent parties and left Mary with her ayah for most of the time. Orphaned by an outbreak of cholera, she is sent back to England to be cared for by her mother's sister's husband, Archibald Craven, a reclusive widower. Craven's wife, Lilian, passed away ten years earlier. He is still mourning that loss. To escape his sad memories, he constantly travels abroad, leaving the entire manor, including Mary, to be cared for by his housekeeper, Mrs. Medlock. The only person who has any time for the little girl is the chambermaid Martha Sowerby, who tells Mary about a locked up garden, surrounded by a wall that was the late Mrs. Craven's favorite place. No one has entered the garden since she died because Archibald locked its entrance and buried the key. He hasn't told anyone where it is.Mary finds the key to the secret garden hidden in a box in the house. A robin shows her where the door is hidden beneath overgrown ivy. Once inside, she discovers that although the roses seem lifeless, some of the other flowers have survived. She decides to tend the garden herself. Mary wants to keep her new found garden a secret, but she knows she needs help tending it. She gets this help from Martha's brother Dickon. He seems to have a connection with all wild animals and plants. Mary gives him money to buy gardening implements and he shows her that the roses, though neglected, are not dead. When Mary's uncle briefly meets with her for the first time since her arrival, Mary asks him for permission to claim her own garden from any abandoned part of the grounds, and he acquiesces. Thanks to her new-found interests and activities, Mary herself begins to blossom, becoming more healthy looking and more pleasant to be around.Some nights, Mary hears someone weeping in another part of the house. When she asks questions, the servants become evasive. They tell her that she is hearing things, like a servant with a toothache. Shortly after her uncle's visit, she goes exploring and discovers her uncle's son, Colin, a lonely, bedridden boy as petulant and disagreeable as Mary used to be. His father shuns him because the child closely resembles his mother. Mr. Craven is a mild hunchback, and both he and Colin are morbidly convinced that the boy will develop the same condition. The servants have been keeping Mary and Colin a secret from one another because Colin doesn't like strangers staring at him and is prone to terrible tantrums. Mr. Craven has been traveling through Europe, but is inspired to rush home after hearing the voice of his dead wife in a dream and receiving a letter from Mrs. Sowerby (Martha's and Dickon's mother, who also knows the secret) telling him, "I think your lady would ask you to come if she was here." He arrives while the children are outdoors and finds himself drawn toward the secret garden. As he approaches nearer, he is astonished to hear their voices inside the walls; Colin bursts out of the garden door toward him, actually winning a footrace against Mary and Dickon. The story's heartwarming ending has Colin able to walk, Archibald smiling again, and Mary has a family and friends who love her.
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Format: paperback
ISBN: 9780590407205 (0590407201)
Publisher: Scholastic
Pages no: 298
Edition language: English
Bookstores:
Community Reviews
The better to see you, my dear
The better to see you, my dear rated it
5.0 Spoiled sour meets spoiled sick
LOVED it. Sour Mary, spoiled Colin, chatty Martha, angelic Dickon, curmudgeon Ben, wise Mother, the whole thing. Best part for me was where Mary starts shouting to Colin over his hypochondria induced tantrum. Lord, was the girl vicious! It was funny in an overboard, freeing way. A very sweet cla...
Burfobookalicious
Burfobookalicious rated it
4.0 Sumptuous Secret
An enchanting tale of children growing up in a private space unencumbered by the troubled and sometimes burdensome world of adults. Uplifting and heavy on the feel-good factor, beautifully written, a classic book for adults and children alike.
The English Student
The English Student rated it
1.0 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
It's amazing how seriously flawed so-called children's classics can be. The Secret Garden, which seems fairly universally beloved in Britain, sees the spoiled and listless Mary Lennox orphaned in India by cholera, and brought to her uncle's rambling Victorian manor on the Yorkshire moors. She hear...
My Bag of Tricks
My Bag of Tricks rated it
5.0 About the Secret Garden
I found this book very engaging as a child. It has elements of history, childhood curiosity, and character education. I love that it is an engaging, easy-to-read chapter book. I would consider using this when reading with upper level small-groups to help build their critical thinking skills. I would...
Tina Sandevska
Tina Sandevska rated it
I remember I attempted to get into this book in early 2014 and failed miserably after about 20 pages—I don’t know what it was, but I guess it just wasn’t the right time for this book. Eventually the right time did come and somehow, being under a lot of pressure at work and life in general, I uncon...
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