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Secret In The Garden (A Peek-Through Book Series)

Overview

A beautiful, deluxe peek-through picture book inspired by the classic story, THE SECRET GARDEN, by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

It's a hot day and sitting outside is a girl who has just finished reading her favorite book, THE SECRET GARDEN. As she is about to fall asleep, a bird flies overhead and drops a key into her lap, and her adventure begins. The girl discovers a world of magic and friendship within the walls of her own secret garden.
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Overview

A beautiful, deluxe peek-through picture book inspired by the classic story, THE SECRET GARDEN, by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

It's a hot day and sitting outside is a girl who has just finished reading her favorite book, THE SECRET GARDEN. As she is about to fall asleep, a bird flies overhead and drops a key into her lap, and her adventure begins. The girl discovers a world of magic and friendship within the walls of her own secret garden.
Children will love the process of discovery in this story, as they peek through the holes on every spread and turn the pages to reveal each hidden surprise. Adults sharing the story with their children will appreciate the echoes of an adored book from their own childhood.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Inspired by The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Secret in the Garden: A Peek-Through Book by James Mayhew introduces Sophie, a girl who embarks on an outdoor adventure after reading her favorite book ("about a girl and a secret garden"). Cut-away patches allow glimpses onto the next page. "What could it be?" asks Sophie in a refrain. In the end, she meets a girl named Mary-but is she real, or imagined?
Children's Literature
Author and illustrator Mayhew has indeed created a charming peek-through-the-picture book inspired by the setting and characters of Frances Hodgson Burnett's classic children's book, The Secret Garden. In it, a young girl named Sophie falls asleep on a lazy summer day, while reading her favorite book about a certain garden and wishing for a friend. A series of woodland friends provide clues that eventually lead Sophie to her own happy ending. The picture book's two-page spreads are painted in delicate floral tones that amply invoke the sun-dappled green havens of the classic English garden. The peek-a-boo cutouts on selected spreads are clever devices to encourage an eager turn of the page. The story, though slight, is pleasant enough and serves its purpose, allowing the book to function as both a novelty book and an introduction to Burnett's classic story, whose pages young readers will (hopefully) soon be exploring on their own. 2003, The Chicken House/Scholastic,
— Dianne Ochiltree
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-This lovely picture book draws inspiration from the childhood classic and is quite effective in its presentation. On a hot, sunny day, Sophie is reading in the grass when she sees "-something glimmering in the trees. What could it be?" A robin drops a key into her hands, which unlocks a door to a lush garden, and much more. A treasure hunt begins with more clues, delivered by forest animals, and revealed through small die-cut holes in the pages. Sophie finds a hat, a doll, and a jump rope, and with each new acquisition remarks, "Somebody will be looking for this!" In the end, the treasure is a new friend. The vibrant, rich colors of the flowers against the soft pastel watercolors of the sky, grass, and trees bring to life what Frances Hodgson Burnett's words inspire in one's imagination. The combination of breathtaking impressionistic illustrations that call to mind a Monet painting with clues delivered in a clever way reminiscent of Eric Carle's Secret Birthday Message (HarperCollins, 1972) results in a masterful homage to Burnett's original tale.-Wanda Meyers-Hines, Ridgecrest Elementary School, Huntsville, AL Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A sumptuously illustrated tale pays homage to Frances Hodgson Burnett's classic. While Mayhew (To Sleep, Perchance to Dream, 2001, etc.) loosely refers to the original work, his subtle alterations and embellishments make this a unique extension of Burnett's story rather than an exact replica. Basking in the warmth of a summer day, Sophie, whose favorite book just happens to contain a secret garden, wishes for a companion. This desire spurs a dream-like sequence where fey woodland creatures lead Sophie on a merry game of seek-and-find, drawing her deeper through the woods. She follows a robin carrying a key to a walled garden, which contains a squirrel frolicking with a hat. Further explorations reveal a lamb carrying a jump rope and a fox playing with a doll. Gathering the playthings, Sophie admonishes the animals, somewhat hopefully, with the refrain "Somebody will be looking for this!" Eventually, she discovers a young girl-and new playmate-named Mary. Mayhew's exquisitely detailed, full-page illustrations lend an ethereal quality to the outing. Delicate cut-outs in the pages allow readers to glimpse the next clues in Sophie's sleuthing game, while the soft watercolors capture the lush beauty of a summer garden filled with variegated hues. Waiting for discovery in the intricate paintings are an abundance of whimsical details to delight readers. A lovely seduction to tempt readers to the longer story. (Picture book. 5-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439404358
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/5/2003
  • Series: A Peek-Through Book Series
  • Edition description: First American Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD350L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.74 (w) x 10.94 (h) x 0.44 (d)

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