The secret garden is a mind-blowing novel about a little girl, who at first was the most selfish girl in the world. This book is wonderfully written by Frances Hodgson Burnett (1849-1924). I especially liked the parts were Yorkshire English is used even though it was a bit tough to understand. This book gave me a feeling that there is both good and bad in every person.
Mary Lennox was a little girl who had been living in India. She had thin hair and a thin body and her face was yellow because she was always ill in one way or the other. She was the most disagreeable- looking, selfish girl in the world. Even though she had wealthy parents, she was looked after and fed by servants in a separate bungalow. Her parents paid no attention to her, but suddenly when her parents and the servants died due to cholera, she didn’t know that she was going to be alone in the world because she was still a little girl.
Then, Mary was sent to her uncle Archibald craven who had a crooked back and lived in a lonely manor called Misselthwaithe which was situated in the middle of the Yorkshire moors. He always was on long journeys. When Mary reached there, Mrs. Medlock, the housekeeper warned her to keep away from other rooms except her nursery and bedroom. At the manor, Mary met Martha Sowerby, her new maid. At first Mary thought that she could rule Martha and slap her, but later realised that England was not like India. Slowly Mary realised that she had no one to tell stories for her, so she gradually talked with Martha and found her interesting. Mary learned from Martha that the manor was surrounded by beautiful gardens. One garden was locked for ten years since Mrs. Craven’s death. After a while, Mary made gardening her hobby. In one of the gardens, she met ben Weatherstaff and his friend, a robin. Mary liked to play with the robin. One day; the robin led her to a key-the key to the secret garden. Mary kept her discovery of the key a secret just known to her. But when she met Martha’s younger brother Dickson, who was a trustworthy local boy who knew about every animal and plant in the moor, she shared her secret with him. Dickson was also interested in it and they both began to search for the door.
Mary was gradually changing into a beautiful girl with strong hair due to the influence of nature. Mary, who had been the most disagreeable looking girl, changed into a pretty little girl. The days passed beautifully but nights were different.at night, Mary used to hear a cry from somewhere in the house. One such night she decided to find out the person who was crying. To her surprise, she found a boy crying in a room. Mary found that he was her cousin. His name was Colin craven. Mr. Craven hated him because doctors said that Colin would be a hunchback like him. Mary felt pity on him. So she daily visited Colin.
One day when she was playing with the robin she found a door. It was the door to the secret garden. Mary informed Dickson and together they renovated the secret garden. They removed the dead branches and started planting new saplings. Mary shared her secret with colin and kept informing him about the working of nature’s spells in the garden.one day; colin expressed his wish to visit the secret garden. So when Mr. Craven was on one of his long journeys, Mary and Dickon carried Colin in a wheel chair with the permission of Mrs. Medlock but asked her not to follow them. Secretly, they went to the magnificent secret garden. Colin loved the garden. Mary understood that Colin had no problem with his back, so she asked him to try to walk. And then with the help of Mary and Dickson and with the blessings of nature, Colin made his first step in life in the secret garden.
Mary, Dickson and Colin went daily to the secret garden and slowly Colin started walking in the garden. One day Ben found out their secret, but he promised that he would keep their secret safe. Slowly, nature changed all the kids thoroughly and Colin started walking and running without anybody’s help.
One day when Mr. Craven came back from his tour and was walking in the gardens, he heard some noise from the other side of the wall. Curiously, he threw open the door to the garden.to his surprise, he saw three children playing in a garden locked since ten years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And one of them was his own son Colin!!!!!!!!!!! Seeing his father, Colin ran to him and hugged him. They all were still surprised. Happily, they walked back to the manor.
With the blessings of nature, Mr. Craven got back his son, Colin got back his life, Dickson got new friends and Mary changed completely from the most disagreeable-looking girl to the kindest girl on earth who found out the heavenly garden and changed four lives including hers.
Gouri G. L.