A beautiful and timeless story about friendship, secrets, and the human spirit, The Secret Garden tells the story of orphaned Mary Lennox, who is sent to live in her uncle's house on the Yorkshire moors. Her uncle's wife died tragically ten years earlier, and the house is an unhappy one. Miserable and lonely, Mary starts to explore the house's gardens and she discovers a key to the secret garden her uncle had sealed off when his wife died. There she discovers a secret so important, so enchanting, that it will change her life forever.
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. For anyone who has ever felt afraid to live and love, The Secret Garden's portrayal of reawakening spirits will thrill and rejuvenate. Frances Hodgson Burnett creates characters so strong and distinct, young readers continue to identify with them even 85 years after they were conceived. (Ages 9 to 12)