Published in: 1911
Edition read: E-book
Mistress Mary is quite contrary until she helps her garden grow. Along the way, she manages to cure her sickly cousin Colin, who is every bit as imperious as she. These two are sullen little peas in a pod, closed up in a gloomy old manor on the Yorkshire moors of England, until a locked-up garden captures their imaginations and puts the blush of a wild rose in their cheeks; “It was the sweetest, most mysterious-looking place any one could imagine. The high walls which shut it in were covered with the leafless stems of roses which were so thick, that they matted together…. ‘No wonder it is still,’ Mary whispered. ‘I am the first person who has spoken here for ten years.'” As new life sprouts from the earth, Mary and Colin’s sour natures begin to sweeten.
Oh, this was one of my favourite movies as a kid. I thought I knew the story (seems I’ve been mixing parts of it up with another of the author’s stories, A Little Princess. Whoops!) turns out, I was kinda a little lacking in some of the details, and it seems the movie I had adored had added some extra bits (like, in the movie, Mary and Dickon kiss, which makes Colin hell mad. Never happens in the book).
This is why we should read the book first kids!
Anyways, it was a pretty good story. I wish I had read it as a kid though, i would have adored it. The imagery of the garden is what draws the reader into the story, though I must admit I got a little over the whole thing when Colin started to do his weird religious discussions. That was a little… strange and offputting. Apart from that though, solid story that made me think of childhood and really wanting to see if I can find the movie I used to watch, to see how it stacks up now that I’ve read the book.
The Secret Garden rating: 6/10
Would I re-read it? Yeah, it was a pretty good little story.
Who would I recommend it to? fans of the movie version (like me!), otherwise kids, or adults with children, or adults who may have read or heard the story when kids and want to re-visit it now they are older.