How did I manage to get through my childhood without reading this book?
The Secret Garden was published in 1911 and is about a spoiled little English girl (Mary), born in India but sent back to England to live with her uncle when she suddenly becomes an orphan. Mary becomes intrigued when she hears a story of a secret garden that’s been locked up for ten years, and as expected, the story follows her search and (*spoiler alert*) discovery of the garden.
The main characters drive this story and stop it from becoming cliche or predictable. There’s one boy I love (Dickon) and another boy I can’t stand (Colin), but Mary manages to find qualities in both.
Frances Hodgson Burnett manages to describe the gardens and nearby Yorkshire moor over and over again, without once sounding repetitive or overdone. In fact, when I look at the cover of this book it doesn’t do the garden justice, because what I’m picturing in my mind is so much more spectacular.
And that, simply, is the sign of a brilliant writer.
In July 2014 I set myself the challenge to finish 100 must-read books before I die. For my ongoing tally click here.