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The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel

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Green-growing secrets and magic await you at Misselthwaite Manor, now reimagined in this graphic novel adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s tale. Ten-year-old Mary Lennox arrives at a secluded estate on the Yorkshire moors with a scowl and a chip on her shoulder. First, there’s Martha Sowerby: the too-cheery maid with bothersome questions who seems out of place in the dr Green-growing secrets and magic await you at Misselthwaite Manor, now reimagined in this graphic novel adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s tale. Ten-year-old Mary Lennox arrives at a secluded estate on the Yorkshire moors with a scowl and a chip on her shoulder. First, there’s Martha Sowerby: the too-cheery maid with bothersome questions who seems out of place in the dreary manor. Then there’s the elusive Uncle Craven, Mary’s only remaining family—whom she’s not permitted to see. And finally, there are the mysteries that seem to haunt the run-down place: rumors of a lost garden with a tragic past, and a midnight wail that echoes across the moors at night.  As Mary begins to explore this new world alongside her ragtag companions—a cocky robin redbreast, a sour-faced gardener, and a boy who can talk to animals—she learns that even the loneliest of hearts can grow roots in rocky soil.


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Green-growing secrets and magic await you at Misselthwaite Manor, now reimagined in this graphic novel adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s tale. Ten-year-old Mary Lennox arrives at a secluded estate on the Yorkshire moors with a scowl and a chip on her shoulder. First, there’s Martha Sowerby: the too-cheery maid with bothersome questions who seems out of place in the dr Green-growing secrets and magic await you at Misselthwaite Manor, now reimagined in this graphic novel adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s tale. Ten-year-old Mary Lennox arrives at a secluded estate on the Yorkshire moors with a scowl and a chip on her shoulder. First, there’s Martha Sowerby: the too-cheery maid with bothersome questions who seems out of place in the dreary manor. Then there’s the elusive Uncle Craven, Mary’s only remaining family—whom she’s not permitted to see. And finally, there are the mysteries that seem to haunt the run-down place: rumors of a lost garden with a tragic past, and a midnight wail that echoes across the moors at night.  As Mary begins to explore this new world alongside her ragtag companions—a cocky robin redbreast, a sour-faced gardener, and a boy who can talk to animals—she learns that even the loneliest of hearts can grow roots in rocky soil.

30 review for The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jaidee

    3.5 "nostalgic, stress easing, hope instilling" stars !!! Thanks to Netgalley, the author and illustrator and Andrews McCeel publishing for an e-copy. I am providing my honest review. This will be released June 2021. I had a variety of minor stressors today (that added up) and I was feeling tense and mildly anxious. Aside from my meditation and walking I needed a little more. So I opened up my favorite Portuguese Rose and was perusing Netgalley when lo and behold...... This adaptation appeared. 3.5 "nostalgic, stress easing, hope instilling" stars !!! Thanks to Netgalley, the author and illustrator and Andrews McCeel publishing for an e-copy. I am providing my honest review. This will be released June 2021. I had a variety of minor stressors today (that added up) and I was feeling tense and mildly anxious. Aside from my meditation and walking I needed a little more. So I opened up my favorite Portuguese Rose and was perusing Netgalley when lo and behold...... This adaptation appeared. As a young boy from the ages of five to eight I read at least three times a year. At five I may have had it read to me once or twice but I started reading very young. It quickly became one my very favorites and it was both magical and comforting to me. This graphic novel/picture book is an adaptation by Mariah Marsden and illustrated by Hanna Luechtefeld. The adaptation was sweetly done but a bit lacking and I would rate it three stars. The illustrations were lovely and varied and I can see it appealing to young children. I would rate the illustrations an excellent four stars. In the end there is some really interesting background on the book and author as well as a glossary. I feel this would appeal as a read-along to the younger children or older children that avoid novels. I would hope this good book would be enough incentive for the child to then go on to the Classic.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Virginie

    A graphic novel adaptation of The Secret Garden available on Netgalley? I couldn't resist! Sure, it's not as detailed as the novel, but it respects the original storyline. For children who don't read a lot, it's a great way to discover this classic. While the story was really sweet and full of magic, I wasn't a fan of the illustrations. Among other things, I would have preferred brighter colors. If you like graphic novel adaptations, I recommend Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel, by the same a A graphic novel adaptation of The Secret Garden available on Netgalley? I couldn't resist! Sure, it's not as detailed as the novel, but it respects the original storyline. For children who don't read a lot, it's a great way to discover this classic. While the story was really sweet and full of magic, I wasn't a fan of the illustrations. Among other things, I would have preferred brighter colors. If you like graphic novel adaptations, I recommend Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel, by the same author. Also, The Secret Garden is a "Read Now" on Netgalley! Many thanks to Andrews McMeel Publishing and Netgalley for the eARC in exchange of my honest reviews. Publication date: June 15th.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Shannara

    So I should premise this with, I adore the book, and I also happen to love the 1993 movie adaptation. But I happen to love graphic novels in general. Which brings me to my strange point, I didn’t love this. The art was quite lovely. It reminds me of in the style, and I really loved that. But this being a very abridged version, I feel like some of the magic just didn’t translate. This is just my opinion because I’m sure so many people are going to love this a lot. I am just so in love w So I should premise this with, I adore the book, and I also happen to love the 1993 movie adaptation. But I happen to love graphic novels in general. Which brings me to my strange point, I didn’t love this. The art was quite lovely. It reminds me of in the style, and I really loved that. But this being a very abridged version, I feel like some of the magic just didn’t translate. This is just my opinion because I’m sure so many people are going to love this a lot. I am just so in love with the original book and the movie that I needed more content. It just wasn’t long enough for my taste. That’s why I’ve rated this 3 1/2 stars rounded down. I do recommend this to those who haven’t read the book, and also a young audience. I think my kiddos would love this!!! Thanks so much to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for allowing me to read this for my honest and unbiased opinion. Check out those review and others on my blog @ https://shannarareads.com/?p=352 Thank you!!!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Olivia | Liv's Library

    The Secret Garden in graphic novel form?! Yes please! I loved how this stayed true to the original story. The artwork & colors were also stunning. It was very short and sweet, and at times seemed a little choppy. Nonetheless, it brought back so much nostalgia! Thank you NetGalley for this copy in exchange for an honest review!

  5. 5 out of 5

    human

    Thank you to Netgalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. (actual rating: 3.5/5) This was a really charming retelling of an already enchanting tale, in graphic novel form. The art style was actually really adorable, and while it isn't as intricate as some, it does its job well and gives certain parts of the story more childlike wonder. The story stays almost entirely true to the original, the only major change being that instead of Mary's past bei Thank you to Netgalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. (actual rating: 3.5/5) This was a really charming retelling of an already enchanting tale, in graphic novel form. The art style was actually really adorable, and while it isn't as intricate as some, it does its job well and gives certain parts of the story more childlike wonder. The story stays almost entirely true to the original, the only major change being that instead of Mary's past being shown at the beginning of the book, it is occasionally flashbacked to throughout the story. I think that this graphic novel works well as an adaption of the original story, even if it seems a bit rushed/disjointed at times. I would definitely recommend it if you enjoyed the original book, as a different way to experience the story.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Schizanthus Nerd

    The Secret Garden was one of my childhood favourites. I read my treasured copy until the front cover began to separate from the rest of the book and watched the 1993 movie so many times I could recite entire scenes to you. It’s now been several years since I last read the book; a friend borrowed my copy and never returned it and I haven’t been able to bring myself to read a copy that’s not my well loved, decades old one. I absolutely adored Mariah Marsden’s adaptation of Anne of Green Gables and The Secret Garden was one of my childhood favourites. I read my treasured copy until the front cover began to separate from the rest of the book and watched the 1993 movie so many times I could recite entire scenes to you. It’s now been several years since I last read the book; a friend borrowed my copy and never returned it and I haven’t been able to bring myself to read a copy that’s not my well loved, decades old one. I absolutely adored Mariah Marsden’s adaptation of Anne of Green Gables and was looking forward to her next adaptation. Needless to say, I was delighted to learn that she was bringing me the story of contrary Mary Lennox, sweet animal whisperer Dickon and sickly Colin. This graphic novel adaptation stays true to the spirit of the novel but glosses over some of the details found in the original story. In particular, Mary’s life before she arrives at Misselthwaite Manor is barely touched on (the reasons for this are explained at the end). If you didn’t already know her background, the changes in her throughout the story wouldn’t be as meaningful. This story also ends before you find out what becomes of the three children. Although I had hoped Brenna Thummler, who illustrated the Anne of Green Gables adaptation, would return for any future adaptations, I did enjoy Hanna Luechtefeld’s style. I especially loved the way the colours fit Mary’s mood. When she first arrives at Misselthwaite Manor the colours are muted. The flashbacks to her life in India take on an orange hue. As the story progresses and life returns to Mary, Colin and the garden, the colours become richer. Following the story you’ll find information about Frances Hodgson Burnett’s life, details of the various locations found in the story and a glossary. Thank you so much to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for the opportunity to read this graphic novel. Blog - https://schizanthusnerd.com

  7. 4 out of 5

    Manybooks

    Sorry, but since Frances Hodgson Burnett’s 1910 The Secret Garden is one of my ALL TIME favourite novels (both as a child and as an adult, in fact, and also with equal reading pleasure and joy), I most definitely was approaching Mariah Marsden’s brand new 2021 graphic novel adaptation with major misgivings and serious doubts (and in particular because a few of my Goodreads friends had read The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel prior to its publication and had not been all that impressed). However a Sorry, but since Frances Hodgson Burnett’s 1910 The Secret Garden is one of my ALL TIME favourite novels (both as a child and as an adult, in fact, and also with equal reading pleasure and joy), I most definitely was approaching Mariah Marsden’s brand new 2021 graphic novel adaptation with major misgivings and serious doubts (and in particular because a few of my Goodreads friends had read The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel prior to its publication and had not been all that impressed). However and to be honest, while my reading expectations for The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel and both Mariah Marsden's adapted text and Hanna Luechtefeld's accompanying artwork were naturally pretty low anyway, I also did not really think I would so massively and utterly despise The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel either. For even though I am quite often not really a fan of graphic novels, I was still kind of hoping that the author's printed words and the illustrator's comic book like illustrations would at the very least manage to sufficiently capture the spirit of Frances Hodgson Burnett's themes and contents, would be a worthwhile enough graphic novel format mirror of The Secret Garden, but which though and unfortunately, has NOT AT ALL been the case with The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel for me. Because yes indeed and both unfortunately and infuriatingly, I ABSOLUTELY DO TOTALLY DESPISE The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel with ALL ALL ALL my heart, and both intellectually and even more so emotionally. For yes and for me totally incomprehensibly, Mariah Marsden in The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel actually leaves out the entire first section of The Secret Garden (the chapter which takes place in India) and which in the novel is in my humble opinion absolutely, totally necessary to show and demonstrate why Mary Lennox is so miserable, unhealthy, spoiled rotten and sour when she first arrives at Misselthwaite Manor, with there being in The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel no depiction and description of neglectful and arrogant parents dead from cholera in India and from whose behaviour towards both their daughter and their East Indian staff Mary herself has learned to be equally sour and arrogant. And well, and furthermore, even after Mary has arrived at the manor in The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel, so much of Frances Hodgson's Burnett's textually important information and details are simply left out or covered ridiculously quickly and distractingly by Mariah Marsden (totally leaving The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel in my humble opinion as basically at best only an outline of Frances Hodgson Burnett's original narrative and a pretty substandard and annoying outline at that). And also, do not get me started with regard to Hanna Luechtefeld’s illustrations. Because indeed, they are for me and my aesthetics both too stagnant and emotionless and often really annoyingly unrealistic, read PATENTLY FALSE. For example, the character of Ben Weatherstaff, who is supposed to be a VERY OLD MAN in The Secret Garden is depicted, is drawn by Hanna Luechtefeld like some guy in his late 20s or mid 30s in The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel. And equally, Colin just does not look like a thin and extremely sickly, mostly completely bedridden invalid but actually appearing illustratively as quite physically fit and healthy right from the start (with only his wheelchair indicating that he has physical issues and not really all that visually convincingly), and very much, and massively increasing my YUCK YUCK YUCK factor, and that I actually do kind of wish that I could be giving The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel LESS than one star. And yes, I will now also be rereading for probably the twentieth time The Secret Garden in order to rid myself of my painful reading memories regarding The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel (and Mariah Marsden’s ridiculously substandard text and Hanna Luechtefeld’s equally substandard artwork) and to let me once again realise and appreciate just how magical Frances Hodgson Burnett’s story is and what an eternal gem of classic children’s literature. Finally, that according to the author note, the ignoring of the India sections of The Secret Garden in The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel was supposedly done by author Mariah Marsden not only deliberately but also as some misguided political correctness attempt, this is not ONLY totally ridiculously unacceptable on all levels but it is also a major whitewashing of history (a really massively silly case of let’s deal with the racial bigotry of the British occupation of India that is encountered in The Secret Garden by ignoring it and pretending that it seemingly did not even exist). And yes, this both totally makes me massively uncomfortable and to equally consider Mariah Marsden as yet another someone who actually and obviously has NO IDEA that you do not remedy instances of racism and intolerance in classic children’s by textually erasing, by on purpose expunging it (and not to mention, Ms. Marsden, the scenarios taking place in India in The Secret Garden are very much a historical reality and as such also quite faithfully and accurately depicted and featured by Frances Hodgson Burnett in her text, and for you to simply and blithely ignore this, to just not include anything East Indian in your The Secret Garden: A Graphic Novel shows me pretty clearly that you obviously have not really read The Secret Garden with sufficient depth of understanding and should therefore not have been adapting it as a graphic novel adaptation either and in the first place, for to reiterate once again, how Mary Lennox was neglected by her parents in India, how she copied the arrogance and bigotry of her parents and other Europeans towards their East Indian domestic servants, towards East Indians as people, this has had a huge impact on Mary and has lastingly shaped her personality into the sour and all-round unpleasant little nasty she is when she first arrives at Misselthwaite Manor).

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tatevik

    When I was about 10, I was old enough to read chapter books, but always skipped descriptions and loved dialogues. I guess I still missed my picture books. I think I would have loved this book at that age. I am so frustrated that my library didn't have graphic novels. This book will be attractive to elementary school age children or even a bit older ones. The illustrations were good, the adaptation not bad, but I missed the descriptive part of the book, even though I reread the unabridged book th When I was about 10, I was old enough to read chapter books, but always skipped descriptions and loved dialogues. I guess I still missed my picture books. I think I would have loved this book at that age. I am so frustrated that my library didn't have graphic novels. This book will be attractive to elementary school age children or even a bit older ones. The illustrations were good, the adaptation not bad, but I missed the descriptive part of the book, even though I reread the unabridged book this year. Wow, I wanted the descriptions, I guess I can be sure I am grown up now. Thank you NetGalley and to the authors for the free copy.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

    I received an advance reader copy of this book to read in exchange for an honest review via netgalley and the publishers. The Secret garden: A graphic novel is a sweet book about a little orphan girl who is sent from the city to live with her uncle. Her uncle is away al ot and upon his return visits he is very depressed due to him losing his wife to a tragic accident leading to him locking up the forbidden garden that she discovers. After finding the key hidden in the garden and unlocking the sec I received an advance reader copy of this book to read in exchange for an honest review via netgalley and the publishers. The Secret garden: A graphic novel is a sweet book about a little orphan girl who is sent from the city to live with her uncle. Her uncle is away al ot and upon his return visits he is very depressed due to him losing his wife to a tragic accident leading to him locking up the forbidden garden that she discovers. After finding the key hidden in the garden and unlocking the secret hidden door, a kind of natural magic is released and it captivates her and her little group of friends she makes upon discovering it including her cousin who is locked away in a room on his own. He is told he is sick and that he is going to die, but upon going into his mother's garden he becomes happier, freer and rejuvenated. This version, visually, is great but I found the text a little below what I hoped - I just felt there was something missing. Overall I enjoyed this book but it isn't one I would highly recommend.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Briar's Reviews

    I'm going to tell you something shocking: I haven't read The Secret Garden yet. I actually just recently got my hands on a copy and it's on my TBR (who knows when my TBR will ever shrink though). I REALLY wanted to jump into it sooner, so this book seemed perfect! It's a graphic novel, I can sink into the images and learn about the story. Then when I read the original, I will have a better understanding and be able to learn. It's something nice, ya know? The illustrations in this book make it feel I'm going to tell you something shocking: I haven't read The Secret Garden yet. I actually just recently got my hands on a copy and it's on my TBR (who knows when my TBR will ever shrink though). I REALLY wanted to jump into it sooner, so this book seemed perfect! It's a graphic novel, I can sink into the images and learn about the story. Then when I read the original, I will have a better understanding and be able to learn. It's something nice, ya know? The illustrations in this book make it feel very whimsical and magical. It feels like I'm in a child's world - which we are. Learning about The Secret Garden and watching the story for the first time - it was truly an experience. I think this is a wonderful book to read. I can't tell you if it's accurate to the original yet, but it was one miraculous story and it's told in an engaging way. Four out of five stars. Thank you to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Chad

    A watered-down, graphic novel version of The Secret Garden. Both the art and story make it pretty clear this is intended for younger audiences. The art has a picture book quality to it. The story glosses over a lot of how unbearable the children are to begin with. It also skips over the reason for Mary's awful behaviour, her time in India during the British oppression of colonial India where she was kept isolated in a camp before her family died of cholera. The creators stated they opted don't d A watered-down, graphic novel version of The Secret Garden. Both the art and story make it pretty clear this is intended for younger audiences. The art has a picture book quality to it. The story glosses over a lot of how unbearable the children are to begin with. It also skips over the reason for Mary's awful behaviour, her time in India during the British oppression of colonial India where she was kept isolated in a camp before her family died of cholera. The creators stated they opted don't do justice to the British oppression in India. Anyway, the story feels a bit washed over to make it palatable for kids (and their parents). Received a review copy from Andrews McMeel Publishing and NetGalley

  12. 4 out of 5

    Amanda M (The Curly Reader)

    This was such a sweet adaptation of the original. I appreciated the author's note on why she left out certain aspects of the original book and loved the glossary in the back as well. I love the story of The Secret Garden and felt the illustrations did an amazing job of capturing the essence of the story. This was such a sweet adaptation of the original. I appreciated the author's note on why she left out certain aspects of the original book and loved the glossary in the back as well. I love the story of The Secret Garden and felt the illustrations did an amazing job of capturing the essence of the story.

  13. 5 out of 5

    akacya ♡̷̷ˎˊ

    I received a complimentary review copy from NetGalley and the publisher. This did not affect my rating in any way. This was a wonderful graphic novel adaptation of the classic story. The artwork was absolutely beautiful. The style was fitting, the palette used was perfect for the story, and I love how many illustrations went onto the next page.

  14. 4 out of 5

    greta ☁️

    ahh this graphic novel brought so much nostalgia towards the story. i've never read a book, but seen the movie in middle school which was brilliant. the pictures in this book were so cute and adorable 😩 i thoroughly loved it! xx ahh this graphic novel brought so much nostalgia towards the story. i've never read a book, but seen the movie in middle school which was brilliant. the pictures in this book were so cute and adorable 😩 i thoroughly loved it! xx

  15. 5 out of 5

    Andy

    This is just awesome. What a great way for children to discover classics, and for everyone to revisit them.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Laisea (grayscalebooks)

    3.5 rounded up! Like it’s predecessor, Anne of Green Gables, it covers only the essential parts of the story and serves as a good introduction to the popular children’s classic. I like how they elected to omit Mary’s life before Misselthwaite Manor, as the original novel did not accurately and delicately consider this backstory (and the oppression of India and Pakistan by British colonists). I think some people will love this rendition and others won’t — I’m sitting somewhere in the middle becau 3.5 rounded up! Like it’s predecessor, Anne of Green Gables, it covers only the essential parts of the story and serves as a good introduction to the popular children’s classic. I like how they elected to omit Mary’s life before Misselthwaite Manor, as the original novel did not accurately and delicately consider this backstory (and the oppression of India and Pakistan by British colonists). I think some people will love this rendition and others won’t — I’m sitting somewhere in the middle because the art didn’t quite live up to the expectations I set after the absolutely enchanting and beautiful Anne of Green Gables graphic novel. I understand the necessity of the gloomier theme, but it didn’t spark the joy that the original novel did.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    Just, you know, my FAVOURITE story of all time! So now I have it in 4 different paperbacks, 1 leather bound book, 1 picture book and now a Graphic Novel. Heck yes! ************************************* *thank you to Netgalley, Andrews McMeel Publishing and Mariah Marsden for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review* 3.5 stars. As you may know, I absolutely adore The Secret Garden and have many versions of the story, so to see it as a Graphic Novel to add to my collection, of course I was g Just, you know, my FAVOURITE story of all time! So now I have it in 4 different paperbacks, 1 leather bound book, 1 picture book and now a Graphic Novel. Heck yes! ************************************* *thank you to Netgalley, Andrews McMeel Publishing and Mariah Marsden for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review* 3.5 stars. As you may know, I absolutely adore The Secret Garden and have many versions of the story, so to see it as a Graphic Novel to add to my collection, of course I was going to grab it if I could. While I tried to keep in mind that I had to keep my high love for this at bay and base my thoughts from a non bias place, I did find it tricky. But I still stand by my thoughts on this. 3.5 stars from me means that it is slightly better than 'Good/I enjoyed it.' From the beginning it felt too choppy. I feel that it needed more of the storyline added into make more sense of what was happening. But further into the book, I got into the flow of it and it seems that the main points and a few bonus ones, did find their way into the pages. It did end up making me feel the magic of the story which I wasn't sure it was going to, so I was pleased by this. The illustrations I warmed up to and I'll admit, I wasn't a fan right away but enjoyed them by the end. As this is targeted probably at a Middle Grade level, or as a first introduction to the classic story, it's quite good for that. It gives you the basic storyline and a feel for why all of us out there, love this story so much. The added touch at the end of the book, where there is information on the original author, was really welcomed. I would like to buy an actual copy of this and would recommend it to all.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mel (Epic Reading)

    The Secret Garden was a huge favourite of mine as a child. I loved the idea of a garden that no one else could enter with gorgeous flowers and such mystery! It was also one of the first books I can remember having a child in a wheelchair. I have a cousin with cerebral palsy whose been confined to a wheelchair almost all his life I found this to be a very important point to note in my teenage years (my cousin is almost 10 years younger than me). This is one of those books like: Little Women, Anne The Secret Garden was a huge favourite of mine as a child. I loved the idea of a garden that no one else could enter with gorgeous flowers and such mystery! It was also one of the first books I can remember having a child in a wheelchair. I have a cousin with cerebral palsy whose been confined to a wheelchair almost all his life I found this to be a very important point to note in my teenage years (my cousin is almost 10 years younger than me). This is one of those books like: Little Women, Anne of Green Gables, and others where I tread carefully with re-tellings or new formats as they hold a special place in my heart from when I was young. However I will confess that one of my own nieces (currently 8 yrs old) loves reading books but tells me that graphic novels are "the best." As a comic collector I don’t disagree with her. And yet oddly, I feel like classics should be classics and remain in novel format most days. But in the interest of possibly having my niece and her sister's favourite medium to share The Secret Garden story I gave this adaptation a shot. True to the original story, the sentiment is, that being outdoors, amongst gorgeous lowers, sunshine, birds and wildlife can only be positive. Additionally the bonds of friendship and how important it can be to be friendly to everyone; regardless of their station in life or if they ‘report’ to you. This is an important lesson for children (and everyone) to learn and be reminded of. I always remember my father telling me that ‘you never know who your next boss will be’; so try not to alienate anyone. Personally I’m not always very good at it (lol); and so it’s a good reminder. The artwork is very simple and cute. It felt like it gave it the 'older' feel that this story has always held for me. I like that it’s clearly the same time period (as witnessed by the clothing and wheelchair). The copy of this story I kept from my childhood was actually highly illustrated on glossy paper. Similar to the graphic novel the colours in the home were muted; but within the garden (and most of outdoors) were vibrant. I also liked how many of the lines used in this format are the exact same as the novel. Making this a vey true to the book adaptation. An excellent option to bring the younger generation into a story that still has a core message relevant today. Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Trisha (semi-hiatus)

    Blog review: https://trishadoeseverythingbutstudy2... I received a free e-ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review! This is more 4.5 stars than 4. I really loved it!! I actually haven't read the original book for this, but this graphic novel has made me want to try it! I've heard a lot about it though, and the end notes said that it's pretty popular though I heard about it the first time a couple of months back. The illustrations were just amazing, and even though they seem pretty simple Blog review: https://trishadoeseverythingbutstudy2... I received a free e-ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review! This is more 4.5 stars than 4. I really loved it!! I actually haven't read the original book for this, but this graphic novel has made me want to try it! I've heard a lot about it though, and the end notes said that it's pretty popular though I heard about it the first time a couple of months back. The illustrations were just amazing, and even though they seem pretty simple (the expressions are conveyed through simple lines and dots), they could convey pretty complex emotions. Which is what I like in a graphic novel, really, simplicity can do so much! The characters were perhaps not the favourite part of this book for me, that certainly goes to the illustrations....I found the MC and her cousin, Mary and Colin to be pretty spoilt and rude characters, but then I think that's present in the original as well? I don't know, but I can't really pass judgement on this having not read the original. I loved Dickon and the maid, Martha, though. The plot isn't really anything much, though I've seen other reviews say that it's better in the original, so, again, I'll have to read to find out. And the book is mostly illustrations with fewer dialogues than I'd expected, but then again, it's a children's book. The decision to remove Mary's family's servants which were Indian seems pretty controversial, but I think it was okay? This is a children's book, and I really think heavier topics such as slavery are better explored if done properly in detail, which is not exactly very feasible to do in a short graphic novel, much less in something that is meant for pretty young audiences. The author's note mentioned that they were only mentioned in passing in the original book, which would have meant that if that kind of thing was included in this, it would have seemed as if having slaves who were POC was normalised, which is not the kind of idea you want kids to get. I would recommend letting children read this, and read the author's note as well, and then leaving it up to the parents to really get into why it was excluded. On the whole, an amazing, light, and sweet read, though vague in some places. I'd recommend it to children just starting with reading books, around 7-10 years of age.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    I couldn’t resist reading this graphic adaptation of one of my favorite stories, and I loved it! I loved the tones conveyed from the shifting color palette from dark and dull to bright and colorful, and the almost collage style panels focusing on small details that bring the setting to life and give it character, and add to the story and intrigue without adding extra dialogue. I definitely felt the magic and appreciated the effort put into translating the story to a graphic novel format to tell I couldn’t resist reading this graphic adaptation of one of my favorite stories, and I loved it! I loved the tones conveyed from the shifting color palette from dark and dull to bright and colorful, and the almost collage style panels focusing on small details that bring the setting to life and give it character, and add to the story and intrigue without adding extra dialogue. I definitely felt the magic and appreciated the effort put into translating the story to a graphic novel format to tell it in an original way.

  21. 5 out of 5

    La Coccinelle

    The Secret Garden is one of my favourite classics, so of course I jumped at the chance to read this graphic novel adaptation of the story. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to my expectations, it doesn't do the original story justice, and it's liable to annoy people who are tired of whitewashed history. The main problem I see here is that, if you don't know the original story, you're going to be confused because the format leads to a glossing-over of many plot points and the character development The Secret Garden is one of my favourite classics, so of course I jumped at the chance to read this graphic novel adaptation of the story. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to my expectations, it doesn't do the original story justice, and it's liable to annoy people who are tired of whitewashed history. The main problem I see here is that, if you don't know the original story, you're going to be confused because the format leads to a glossing-over of many plot points and the character development is weak (and inconsistent with the original). For some reason, the decision was made to remove any mentions of India from the story (purportedly because "they don't do justice to the history of British oppression in colonial India"), rendering Mary an inexplicable orphan with no backstory and no reason for her appalling behaviour toward those she feels are beneath her. The British were in India and they acted like racist jerks; can we please not try to "fix" the problem by ignoring it? In the original story, Mary is a lot more sour. Here, we see a badly developed child character going through the motions of the story. Even the artwork doesn't really convey the emotions of this hurt little girl very well, as the drawings make everyone look much the same. Colin is probably the best developed out of all of them, but only because he's such an over-the-top character to begin with. I can't put my finger on the intended audience here, either. There's not a ton of text (there are many panels with no text at all), so it might be okay for younger readers. However, like I mentioned earlier, those who are unfamiliar with the original story are liable to be confused and/or underwhelmed by the rather thin plot as it's presented here. There is some historical information at the back, along with a strange glossary that defines many words that are only used in the author's note. While the factual information about Frances Hodgson Burnett, India, and the English countryside is nice, I don't really know why we needed a glossary. (And I don't know why India was too taboo a topic to include in the graphic novel itself, when it was okay to put in the notes at the end.) Perhaps fans of the novel who want to read every adaptation will get more out of this than I did. I love the original story... but this graphic novel definitely did not measure up. Thank you to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing a digital ARC.

  22. 5 out of 5

    nαомι αndιno

    The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett is one of the best children’s books of the 20th century. It took me much longer than expected to finish reading because I was captivated by the amazing illustrations. Even once I was finished, I flipped back to stare at my favorite illustrations some more. I also enjoyed the brief history of Frances Hodgson Burnett and also other information about the setting of the story with a glossary included. Of course, major points in the original book are missed The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett is one of the best children’s books of the 20th century. It took me much longer than expected to finish reading because I was captivated by the amazing illustrations. Even once I was finished, I flipped back to stare at my favorite illustrations some more. I also enjoyed the brief history of Frances Hodgson Burnett and also other information about the setting of the story with a glossary included. Of course, major points in the original book are missed, but I believe this book will pique the interest in children to read the original. Thank you NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for a digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    I love Francis Hodgson Burnett, so I wasn't sure how I would take to this retelling. Very sensitive and well done, actually. The problem with reading classics, sometimes, is the beliefs that were common then are not so now. The way the author got around the problem of Mary and her parents being part of the British colonial power, and their attitudes, was just to imply things that happened there. In the back of the book, in the glossary and the notes, they explain their reasons for doing so. Still I love Francis Hodgson Burnett, so I wasn't sure how I would take to this retelling. Very sensitive and well done, actually. The problem with reading classics, sometimes, is the beliefs that were common then are not so now. The way the author got around the problem of Mary and her parents being part of the British colonial power, and their attitudes, was just to imply things that happened there. In the back of the book, in the glossary and the notes, they explain their reasons for doing so. Still a lovely story of how the garden makes one whole Thanks to Edelweiss for making this book available for an honest review.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Yasza

    “The Secret Garden” by F. H. Burnett is one of my most beloved children’s books of all time, so I couldn’t skip this graphic novel. The adaptation was written by Mariah Marsden whose other book “Anne of Green Gables” I loved very much and I sometimes dive into when in need to cheer up. “The Secret Garden” was no less enjoyable. The illustrations by Hanna Luechtefeld are simply enchanting. Performed in muted gentle colours, they created a cozy, magical atmosphere, a world you would want to get lo “The Secret Garden” by F. H. Burnett is one of my most beloved children’s books of all time, so I couldn’t skip this graphic novel. The adaptation was written by Mariah Marsden whose other book “Anne of Green Gables” I loved very much and I sometimes dive into when in need to cheer up. “The Secret Garden” was no less enjoyable. The illustrations by Hanna Luechtefeld are simply enchanting. Performed in muted gentle colours, they created a cozy, magical atmosphere, a world you would want to get lost in. They were so heartwarming and touching, I couldn’t tear myself away from the pages. The story itself is so popular, that everyone is familiar with it more or less: through the book or an old movie adaptation (which was my favourite to watch as a child). I believe Marsden’s version did the novel justice. The nature is basically called “magic“ in the adaptation and looks like it too. The picturesque scenery of moors, wild flowers, trusting animals are so alive and breathing, it made me smile. I guess more pages could be dedicated to developing the characters’ relationships and to the importance of making friends. The other thing I’d change in this graphic adaptation is its length, I wish it was much longer. On the other hand, it’s the right number of pages to keep kids engaged in the story. I hope the additional information at the end of the book will strike a spark of curiosity in young readers’ minds and they will be interested in reading the novel itself or just spending some time outdoors in the company of birds and plants. Thanks to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for a digital copy of this lovely book in exchange for an honest review.

  25. 5 out of 5

    l a u r a

    4.25/5 :) I read the original secret garden when I was little but don’t remember much, and never had much interest to re-read it again. But this graphic novel adaption caught my eye with this stunning cover so I just had to check it out. It definitely did not disappoint :) The art style and colors are beautiful and to my liking. The colors are pretty and pleasant to look at. And I loved how it changed as the story progressed and the mood changed. I loved seeing the details in Mary’s facial express 4.25/5 :) I read the original secret garden when I was little but don’t remember much, and never had much interest to re-read it again. But this graphic novel adaption caught my eye with this stunning cover so I just had to check it out. It definitely did not disappoint :) The art style and colors are beautiful and to my liking. The colors are pretty and pleasant to look at. And I loved how it changed as the story progressed and the mood changed. I loved seeing the details in Mary’s facial expressions and how much she and her entire vibe changed at the end compared to the beginning. Although I thought things were resolved a little too fast, it’s the perfect graphic novel length for a relaxing comfort read and for a younger audience. I love how they included a glossary at the end, i thought that was really thoughtful and would be really helpful especially to young readers. If you don’t want to or have already read The Secret Garden, then this is the perfect read for you. I might even read it now that I’ve read this graphic novel version :)

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mehsi

    I received this book from Netgalley in exchange of an honest review. One of my favourite books when I was younger and so I had to get the graphic novel when I saw it on Netgalley. I was curious how the story would be adapted and how much changed from the original. Well quite a bit. Haha, the whole India part is left out and Mary is definitely not so much of a brat as I remember her from when I read the original during my childhood. Meet Mary, a tiny little girl who lost her parents and is now stru I received this book from Netgalley in exchange of an honest review. One of my favourite books when I was younger and so I had to get the graphic novel when I saw it on Netgalley. I was curious how the story would be adapted and how much changed from the original. Well quite a bit. Haha, the whole India part is left out and Mary is definitely not so much of a brat as I remember her from when I read the original during my childhood. Meet Mary, a tiny little girl who lost her parents and is now struggling with the loss. I guess with the India parts away, it changed things for me. Whereas I remember her as quite spoiled and grumpy with a dash of loss, here it seemed more that she was bratty and grumpy because of the loss, not because she was spoiled. I really liked that change. It made me like her much more and had me rooting for her. Hoping that she would find the garden soon and discover the fun and joy of growing something, discovering animals and flora. I loved seeing her bond with the servants, getting quite close with Martha. Who wasn’t impressed that much by Mary’s grumpiness (she also clearly just saw a little girl who was lost and alone). I loved that they had fun chats, and that Martha bought a present for Mary so she could have fun. The secret garden was just wonderful and I especially loved seeing it bloom and get cleaned up a bit. It still held its wild magic.. but it also become something else. I loved seeing Mary and Dickon garden, plant flowers, pick away the things that are dead. Later on they get help and things get even better. We also meet Colin, who was definitely NOT my favourite character for most of the book. I can kind of see where he is coming from in regards to his attitude. A father who doesn’t care, a mother who died, doctors and servants who talk about death. I was worried he would spoil the garden. I was worried he would just ruin things. But in the end he just needed a friend, friends even. Something to do. Someone to play with. A garden to take care of. I love how he transformed and how his attitude changed. I love seeing everyone bloom. Mary got much more happy, but she also helped out her uncle and her nephew. The garden got revived. Animals glitter. There is magic in the air. At times I was just tearing up, especially during the last few pages. Those were so well done. Making me smile and tear up. The art was just so pretty and I love the style and how well it fitted with the story and the characters. All in all, I would highly recommend this one to everyone. I am kind of eager to read the original novel again, because it has been ages! Review first posted at https://twirlingbookprincess.com/

  27. 5 out of 5

    RoshReviews

    The Secret Garden is one of my favourite children’s books. I love the entire story (except for one part; more on that later) and all the characters, Dickon and Martha being my special favourites. So seeing the graphic version of this novel is a nostalgic experience. You might already know the original story. Mary’s parents, who live in colonial India, die suddenly of cholera and she is shipped off to one of her distance uncles in England. While initially a spoiled brat, she is soon set right by The Secret Garden is one of my favourite children’s books. I love the entire story (except for one part; more on that later) and all the characters, Dickon and Martha being my special favourites. So seeing the graphic version of this novel is a nostalgic experience. You might already know the original story. Mary’s parents, who live in colonial India, die suddenly of cholera and she is shipped off to one of her distance uncles in England. While initially a spoiled brat, she is soon set right by the friendly maid Martha. Under her loving tutelage, Mary learns to enjoy the outdoors, find new friends and even love herself. The secret garden she discovers on the grounds is central to this changeover. The book is quite charming and cute. It moves very quickly as there are many pages with only graphics and not much dialogue. Unfortunately, the story gets a few abrupt jumps at times and I can’t help feeling that chaptered sections would have worked better in explaining the sudden scene shifts. While the illustrations of the garden and house are excellent, the children could have drawn in a cuter way. The book will still be appealing to all its readers because the story is en evergreen one that speaks of nature and its enjoyment. I hope this graphic novel spurs the children to read the classic book too. What I have always hated in the original story is the colonial setting. While I am sometimes forgiving of the classic authors for being so racist and stereotyped in their thinking about “the natives”, I found it hurtful that the author Frances Hodgson Burnett had never even visited India and merely used whatever she had heard to create a picture of India under British rule. So here comes the great news: the graphic version does away entirely with the India part of the story and begins with Mary travelling to her uncle’s house. The note by the author at the end of the book states that the Indian part has been skipped out as “it doesn’t do justice to the history of British oppression in colonial India.” Heck, yeah! I am usually against significant parts of the story being left out in the graphic version, but in this case, I wholeheartedly support this decision and am grateful to whoever took that creative call. A big THANK YOU. A extra half star to the book for this decision and the honest note mentioning the same. I would have gone with 3.75 stars for the book but now I go with 4.25. Thank you, NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing, for the Advanced Review Copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. *********************** Join me on the Facebook group, Readers Forever! , for more reviews, book-related discussions and fun. Follow me on Instagram: RoshReviews

  28. 4 out of 5

    Srivalli Rekha

    3.8 Stars This illustrated children’s book is an abridged version of the original work, The Secret Garden. The book is great for kids who like more pictures than words. However, I do wish the graphics were a little more charming. The feeling of magic, which is crucial for the story, doesn’t seem to come out to its fullest. Still, the book is a nice little read to teach kids about plants, nature, friendship, and affection. I’m really glad that the author chose not to use the part about India in h 3.8 Stars This illustrated children’s book is an abridged version of the original work, The Secret Garden. The book is great for kids who like more pictures than words. However, I do wish the graphics were a little more charming. The feeling of magic, which is crucial for the story, doesn’t seem to come out to its fullest. Still, the book is a nice little read to teach kids about plants, nature, friendship, and affection. I’m really glad that the author chose not to use the part about India in her illustrated work. Giving kids biased and one-sided views of a country they aren’t familiar with wouldn’t be good. Overall, this is a cute and sweet version of the original book for the little munchkins. I received an ARC from NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing and am voluntarily leaving a review.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Maritina Mela

    *4.5/5 You know the story of a little spoiled, yet lonely girl, Mary, who after spending all of her life in India, leaves to stay with her uncle, following the death of her parents. And if you don't, here's what happens next: she moves in to her uncle's mansion, where she befriends one of the servant girls, Martha, the gardener, Dickon who is Martha's brother and eventually meets her cousin Colin, a sick kid who is equally spoiled and lonely. She also falls in love with the mansion's secret garde *4.5/5 You know the story of a little spoiled, yet lonely girl, Mary, who after spending all of her life in India, leaves to stay with her uncle, following the death of her parents. And if you don't, here's what happens next: she moves in to her uncle's mansion, where she befriends one of the servant girls, Martha, the gardener, Dickon who is Martha's brother and eventually meets her cousin Colin, a sick kid who is equally spoiled and lonely. She also falls in love with the mansion's secret garden, which used to belong to Colin's mother and after her death, her uncle kept it locked, leaving it to die. But Mary is determined to keep it alive and restore it to its former glory, which she does along with her friends. As the story progresses, we see Mary opening up to the people around her and becoming more independed and happier. In a sense tho, all of the characters go though changes and help each other grow, especially the three kids of the story (Mary, Colin and Dickon) This graphic novel is a great adaptation and a nice way to be introduced to the story, in case you have not read the original. Personally speaking, I am one of the people who fall into this category, since I have yet to read the original and don't know if my thoughts on this one will apply to that too. But, I have read some other short adaptations of the story, watched a cartoon adaptation as a kid and I also think I remember having watched parts of the 1993 movie as well, so I knew what to expect. I really liked the tone this was written in, it is very easy to read (took me less than an hour, I love that for me ❤️) it is very easy to connect to the characters and the artwork was fantastic! I also loved how in between scenes there were little flashbacks of Mary's life in India. They definitely help you understand and sympathise with her. My only complain, is that this should be a little bigger. Because I would love to see more scenes of the main characters interacting with each other, and I would love to know some of them better. But yeah, other than that, this was a positive reading experience. If you made it this far, congratulations! 'Til next time, take care :) :) :) I received an e-book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kailey (Luminous Libro)

    This retelling of the Secret Garden in graphic novel form is lovely, but has some issues with story-telling. I liked it, but it also has some flaws. I liked the beautiful art style! The art is whimsical and sweet with bright colors. However, I didn't like that there were so many tiny panels on each page. It felt too busy. There is very little dialogue, which makes it difficult to follow the progression of the story. In the original novel, we get to see the gradual character development of Colin an This retelling of the Secret Garden in graphic novel form is lovely, but has some issues with story-telling. I liked it, but it also has some flaws. I liked the beautiful art style! The art is whimsical and sweet with bright colors. However, I didn't like that there were so many tiny panels on each page. It felt too busy. There is very little dialogue, which makes it difficult to follow the progression of the story. In the original novel, we get to see the gradual character development of Colin and Mary. But with so little dialogue to give the reader clues about what is happening on that internal journey for the characters, the characters seem to leap ahead with no indication of what made them change. There were a couple of places where the dialogue didn't make sense, because the story doesn't follow the natural progression of the original story. I think some of the scenes might have gotten mixed. In one scene, Mary tells Colin that Dickon is Martha's brother, and then in the very next scene, she mentions Dickon, and Colin asks, "Who is that?" Sloppy story-telling. I wish that they had stuck closer to the original story. Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for a free and honest review. All the opinions stated here are my own true thoughts, and are not influenced by anyone.

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