The Hidden Gallery (The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place Series #2)

The Hidden Gallery (The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place Series #2)


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062366948
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 04/21/2015
Series: Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place Series , #2
Edition description: Revised
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 86,569
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.50(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Maryrose Wood is the author of the first five books (so far!) in this series about the Incorrigible children and their governess. These books may be considered works of fiction, which is to say, the true bits and the untrue bits are so thoroughly mixed together that no one should be able to tell the difference. This process of fabrication is fully permitted under the terms of the author's Poetic License, which is one of her most prized possessions.

Maryrose's other qualifications for writing these tales include a scandalous stint as a professional thespian, many years as a private governess to two curious and occasionally rambunctious pupils, and whatever literary insights she may have gleaned from living in close proximity to a clever but disobedient dog.

Jon Klassen grew up in Niagara Falls, Canada, and now lives in Los Angeles, California. He is the Caldecott Award-winning author and illustrator of I Want My Hat Back and This Is Not My Hat, as well as the illustrator of Sam and Dave Dig a Hole and Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett; The Dark by Lemony Snicket; House Held Up by Trees by Ted Kooser; Cats' Night Out by Caroline Stutson; and the first three books in the Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place series.

Read an Excerpt

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place
Book I: The Mysterious Howling

The Second Chapter

Penelope and Lady Constance converse to the accompaniment of strange noises.

If you have ever visited a theme park full of roller coasters, water slides, and thrilling games of chance, you were undoubtedly tickled half to death by it all. But then, just when it seemed the excitement had reached a fever pitch from which you might never recover, the tedious ordeal of waiting in a long line for the bathroom may have suddenly made you so bored that you wished you were home in bed with the flu.

So it was with Penelope. Despite the two days of anxious travel she had just endured and the important job interview that awaited her, as she sat there trapped in the carriage seat next to a coachman who had decided not to talk, Penelope grew excruciatingly bored. She decided it would be rude to glance at her poetry book.

"I shall have to resort to the scenery to keep me occupied," she thought, turning her mind to the task. They were now passing through stately woods. Dutifully she admired the golden-tipped canopy of leaves and observed how the sunlight could penetrate only here and there, dappling a lush undergrowth of ferns. Some of these she could identify even from a distance: Hart's-tongue ferns, cinnamon ferns, and some with attractive crinkled edges she thought were called corrugated ferns or, if they weren't, ought to be. Penelope had once attended a lecture at Swanburne given by the deputy vice president of the Heathcote Amateur Pteridological Society, and considered herself quite knowledgeable about ferns as a result.

Then she imagined the trees as they would soon look in the full blaze of autumn color...and then afterward, in winter, as a field of bare-branched giants standing on a blanket of white. It made her wonder (although not aloud), "And where will I be come Christmas? If all goes well, I will live here at Ashton Place, a strict but kind-hearted governess with three clever pupils who both fear and adore me."

Penelope had read several novels about such governesses in preparation for her interview and found them chock-full of useful information, although she had no intention of developing romantic feelings for the charming, penniless tutor at a neighboring estate. Or...heaven forbid!...for the darkly handsome, brooding, and extravagantly wealthy master of her own household. Lord Fredrick Ashton was newly married in any case, and she had no inkling what his complexion might be.

"Or perhaps I will mumble my way through my interview like a dimwit and be sent home again in shame," she fretted. "Though, alas! There is no home for me to return to!"

At which point the carriage hit a pothole and flew thirteen-and-one-half inches into the air before crashing down again. The driver took this opportunity to break his silence with the brief and heartfelt outburst mentioned earlier, but it is not necessary to reprint his exact words. Fortunately, Penelope was unfamiliar with the expression he used and was, therefore, none the worse for hearing it.

However, she took the interruption as a reminder that wallowing in self-pity, even in the privacy of her own mind, was not the Swanburne way. Instead, she cheered herself with the idea that she might soon have three pupils of her own to teach, to mold, and to imbue with the sterling values she felt so fortunate to have acquired at school. If each child came equipped with a pony, so much the better!

And then, abruptly, they were out of the trees and coming over the crest of a hill, passing between great stone pillars that framed a tall and forbidding black iron gate.

Once through the gate, she could finally see before her the house known as Ashton Place.

The coachman was right: Ashton Place was a very grand house indeed. It was perfectly situated in the sheltered lowland ahead and big as a palace, with the lovely symmetrical proportions of the ancient Greek architecture Penelope had so often admired in her history books at Swanburne.

From the hilltop vantage of the gate Penelope could see that the surrounding property numbered not in the hundreds, nor the thousands, but in the tens of thousands of fact, the forest she had just passed through was part of the estate. There were orchards and farms and groups of other, much smaller houses as well. These were the cottages in which the servants lived, and where the blacksmith, tinsmith, and tanner plied their trades. There was even a smokehouse for the curing of fresh bacon, ham, sausage, and all sorts of meat-based delicacies that would nowadays be purchased in a supermarket, uninterestingly wrapped in plastic.

And Penelope noted with delight: There was a barn big enough to house a whole herd of ponies, with their long, lovingly brushed tails and red ribbons braided prettily through their manes...oh, how Penelope wished the job were already hers! But the interview was still ahead, and she resolved to keep her wits about her.

The driveway approaching the main entrance curved around formal gardens of great beauty, now tinged with the first brushstrokes of autumn color. The coachman brought the carriage straight to the front of the house and assisted his passenger brusquely to the ground. A kind-faced, square-built woman of middle age was waiting to greet the new arrival.

"Miss Lumley, I presume?"

Penelope nodded.

"I'm Mrs. Clarke, the head housekeeper. Thank goodness you've arrived! Lady Constance has been asking for you every quarter hour the whole blessed day. Don't make such a stricken face, dear. You're not late. Lady Constance tends to be impatient, that's all it is. But look at're hardly more than a child yourself! Jasper, see to her bag, please!"

The carpetbag was whisked inside by a young man who appeared from nowhere. As for the trunk of books, which the coachman was struggling to lift..."Leave that in the carriage for now," Mrs. Clarke directed. She jangled the large ring of keys she wore at her waist and gave Penelope an appraising look. "Until we see how things go."

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place
Book I: The Mysterious Howling
. Copyright © by Maryrose Wood. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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The Hidden Gallery (The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place Series, Book II) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 53 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is hard to say too little or too much for this book is a must buy and to remember. The three Incorrigables are loving and humorous! One thing is that new friends and old teachers can be helpful. If you are wondering if you want to buy thrs book, look further. If you are courious see what I have to say. BUY AND ENJOY THE BOOK! Read the book and you will see the meaning of my words. If the book is noot suitible for in the first few chapters, keep reading! This book is a truely aamazing story and a happy cliff-hanger!!! Trust me. Read and see. Tell me what you think about it when your done. I want biig boned sentences with lots of details!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved the first book so id thlnk id love the 2nd
sarah-e on LibraryThing 11 months ago
I wish more had happened in this book. More clues are dropped on the reader, but no resolution. The book feels incomplete - the whole plot is Penelope receives a letter, goes to London, and finds a clue to her own mysterious origins. I wish some real progress had been made in the story; perhaps in the third installment. This was a very good sequel, so of course I will read the next. The characters are just as well-written as in the first book, and all the ahwooing is just as cute.
celerydog on LibraryThing 11 months ago
Loved book 2 as much, perhaps more than the first part. There is no doubt about reading the final installment.Suitable for 10+ and great fro reading aloud..
ChristianR on LibraryThing 11 months ago
I just love this series and am looking forward to the final installation when I assume a lot while be explained. In the meantime, it's lots of fun to journey with Penelope Lumley and the three Incorrigible children. In this book (Book Two) they travel to London where they meet a very nice young man, Simon. Penelope reunites briefly with her beloved former governess, Miss Mortimer, who stirs up even more confusion by warning her that the children are in grave danger but cautioning Penelope against trying to figure out the mystery. Why does Miss Mortimer insist Penelope use the Swanburne Academy hair poultice, which turns her beautiful hair (which turns out to be the same interesting shade as the Incorrigibles) a lifeless and hideous color? Why does Miss Mortimer give Penelope a guidebook to London that, although charming, seems not to describe London at all except for an obscure wing of the London Museum? And why does Lord Ashton's friend, Judge Quinzy, turn out not to be a judge at all? Maryrose Wood's turn of a phrase is delightful and her references to human nature, especially when she relates it to modern day, will have readers nodding in agreement. This would be a fun read-aloud.
citygirl on LibraryThing 11 months ago
Delightful and charming, with a healthy dose of absurdist humor thrown in. Penelope, the 15 year old nanny and star of the book, has more sense than any of the adults she encounters. Nearly unflappable, Penelope has the confidence that her education at the Agatha Swanburne School for Poor Bright Girls can see her through any challenge, which it does. Having succeeded in taming the feral children in her charge, she now must navigate the unfamiliar dangers of London and foil the sinister plots of some rather odd and creepy people in her employers' social circle. Laugh out loud funny in many places. I'm looking forward to the next one in the series.
keeneam on LibraryThing 11 months ago
This book continues a few months from when the first one left off, taking Penelope and the children to London, along with the Ashtons. Penelope is asked by her mentor, to visit her, where she is given some mysterious information about the children. She also meets a nice young man, Simon, who helps her with the children and the mystery of their origin. Penelope, begins to see links between the children, Lord Ashton, and herself. Will the mystery every be solved? This book was very enjoyable and I wanted to finish, I am ready for the next one to expand and end the mystery. The characters are relatable in a fictional way and the narrator, herself, as become more witty and involved in this second book.
bgweaver on LibraryThing 11 months ago
I was unable to avoid a little disappointment in my reading of this installment in The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place series. It was not a strong sequel, which is a shame as I did so much want to like it. The Hidden Gallery has many of the same shortcomings as the first, but as the story stretches on I find them harder and harder to overlook. The children are still very much a lump character, and there is very little reason for the reader to differentiate between them. When they were still fresh from the wild, still a pack, this made sense, but I wanted them to grow and develop significantly more than they did. Some effort was made to grow them, one of the boys becomes an art fanatic, the other develops a love of navigation and Cassiopeia is apparently a math prodigy (isn¿t she five? Solving for the area of a triangle?), but that¿s the long and the short of it. I cannot even remember which boy has which hobby, but it honestly doesn¿t seem to matter. I find them mildly amusing, in a distant sort of way, but I don't really care about them.I felt like more of the humor fell flat too. Not that there weren¿t funny bits, such as the attack on the guards pictured on the cover, but there were more bits that tried to be funny and were just embarrassing: ¿At that point Beowulf scooted up to show Penelope and Simon a new trick he had invented on the velocipede (he called it `popping a wheelawoo¿). . .¿ I had to stop reading for a little while after that. I wish that I didn¿t think poorly about Wood¿s writing. I really love her idea, and the direction I foresee the story going is intriguing. I raced through The Mysterious Howling and wanted to share it with others, even suggesting it to a few children I thought might think it a good read. I¿ll wind up loaning out The Mysterious Howling and I would definitely spend money on a sequel, but for the idea and because I wanted/expected better than The Hidden Gallery and I think Wood could deliver. If it was not so, I wouldn¿t have finished the book, holding my breath and hoping it would redeem itself.
picardyrose on LibraryThing 11 months ago
The tone is too affected now, and the mystery hardly mysterious -- I'm too old for it, that's what's wrong.
molliekay on LibraryThing 11 months ago
This next installment in the Incorrigible Children series is even better than the first. Miss Lumley and the children move to London for the summer and the hunt is on! Lemony Snicket and Jane Austen would be proud of the trio of wolf babies and their governess.
jll112 on LibraryThing 11 months ago
"Ahwoooooooooooo!"As Agatha Swanburn says, "She who waits for the perfect moment to act will never make a turn at a busy intersection." And so we are delighted by this and other revelations of a Victorian lady as related by her student Penelope. I haven't read the first book but I intend to now. I was afraid this boook might just be fluff. However, as I got more into the book I really enjoyed the developing mystery surrounding this family.My only fear is that it will start leaning to the supernatural which I would not enjoy...we'll see. But so far the Incorrigible Children have been wonderwooooo!!!!
aethercowboy on LibraryThing 11 months ago
The worst part about this book was that it was compared to Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. Comparing one book to another, arguably, more popular book, or series, or author, or what have you is very dangerous, as it causes the astute reader to view the work at hand through a more critical lens usually reserved for books and series and authors who have proven their worth enough to get there.This gave me a terrible first impression of the book, as I've read other books in the past that have been likened to other, more popular books, series, and authors, some even to the point of declaring themselves superior, only to be let down.So, what can I say about the author, Maryrose Wood, and her ability to overcome these publisher-laden handicaps?One word: Wow.Now other words: Wood has crafted here an atypical governess story, clearly inspired by the Victorian-era chick-lit, but also with a healthy dose of modern-day humor, and a bit of the hair of the dog that bit ya.The premise of the series as a whole, The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place, is that some feral foundlings, the eponymous children who are dubbed with the surname Incorrigible are put under the charge of a governess named Penelope who has more pluck than anything else. By the end of the first volume, she's managed to convince them to sit up straight, use utensils, and stop eating most woodland creatures. Nevertheless, their surrogate lupine parentage comes through at the most inopportune times.In the second volume, the one I'm reviewing, the Ashtons, their servants, the Incorrigibles, and Penelope all go to London, where many mysteries are reveled, some are only slightly uncovered, and many, many more are introduced.While Maryrose Wood is not exactly Lemony Snicket, she is Maryrose Wood, and that should be enough.
keristars on LibraryThing 11 months ago
I did not read The Mysterious Howling before starting on The Hidden Gallery: I was much too impatient to start reading about the Incorribles to take the time to go to the library (or bookstore) for a copy. I had been looking forward to reading about governess Penelope Lumley and the three children ever since I first heard of The Mysterious Howling, but I always had too many other books already at hand that were begging to be read... Luckily, I found that I didn't need to be familiar with the first book to enjoy the second.Many references are made to the events in The Mysterious Howling, but always with just enough context to simply make me curious and eager to read that book, rather than confused and frustrated that I was missing part of the plot or story. Thus, while it is probably very helpful to have read the first book, I don't think it is necessary to do so before starting on this one, if by chance you can't get hold of The Mysterious Howling before acquiring The Hidden Gallery.In The Hidden Gallery, the Ashton Place household temporarily relocates to London. Even for the clever Penelope, London is a confusing and strange city, which leads to some very humorous scenes, such as the children mistaking one of the Buckingham Palace guards for a bear. Luckily, Penelope was given an illustrated guidebook to help her find her way - though it, too, is strange, with illustrations of Alpine pastorals rather than city scenes, and short verses rather than proper descriptions save for eight pages going on in great detail about the Gallery of Overuse of Symbolism in Historical Portraits in the British Museum.There is a mystery which never quite gets solved, though many clues are placed along the way, should a clever reader try to figure out the answer. Presumably, this mystery was introduced in the first book and will be answered in a future one.I daresay that Lady Constance is my favorite character in the book, and I was sad that she had so few appearances. Her reactions to different things about London were a running joke throughout the book, as were descriptions/fondness of ferns, and quotes from Agatha Swanburne (I get the impression that they're also common in the first book).If there was anything I didn't like about the book, it's that the third one is so far off from being published. The Hidden Gallery is positively delightful, terribly fun. The way Maryrose Wood plays with language in the storytelling is fantastic, rather like a gentler, tea-and-cake version of Lemony Snicket, whom I also love to read, particularly the first few books in that series.I can't recommend this book enough for anyone who enjoys children's books!
jfoster_sf on LibraryThing 11 months ago
Wonderful! This second book is even better than the first. In this sequel, Penelope and the children have been invited to go to London to visit with Penelope's old school master, and the lady of the house-Lady Constance-gets the idea in her head to move the whole household to London! When Penelope and the Incorrigibles get to London, the sights, sounds, smells, and the enormous hustle and bustle prove to be overwhelming. When Penelope ushers the children to a small nook in the alley to get away from the crowd and catch their breaths, they are all startled by an old gypsy woman who tells the children's fortunes and claims to beware, the hunt is on! This was such a fun book, with even more indispensable Swanburne sayings, and even more mysteries unfolding. Also, while lost in the streets of London, shortly after meeting the gypsy, Penelope and the children make the acquaintance of a wonderfully smitten-worthy young man, which makes a nice addition to the story. All in all, I can't wait for the next one and hope this turns into a nice, lengthy series.
_Zoe_ on LibraryThing 11 months ago
This is the sequel to The Mysterious Howling, which I loved when I read it last year. I didn't think The Hidden Gallery reached quite the same level as the first, but it's still an entertaining book and the series as a whole is one that I'd wholeheartedly recommend. I just found this installment a bit frustrating because for about the first two-thirds of the book, no progress at all was made towards resolving the various mysteries that had been introduced in the first one, and even when certain pieces of information were revealed toward the end, we were often left with more questions than answers. One the one hand, this is a good thing because it means that the series can go on longer, and I do enjoy reading about these characters. On the other hand, I'd like the main plot lines to progress at least a bit more in 300+ pages. Maryrose Wood can certainly write a tantalizing story, but in the end it felt like we hadn't gotten very far. Still, Wood remains one of my favourite new authors, and I'm eager to see how the story unfolds in the coming books.
skstiles612 on LibraryThing 11 months ago
In this second book we find some answers to mysteries set before us in the first book. By the end of the book we are left with more questions, more mysteries. I loved that we see the children go back to their most basic animalistic selves when they encounter the palace guards and the pigeons in London. Throw in a gypsy who warns about someone who wants to put the children in harms way and you are all set to grind your teeth waiting for the next book. I enjoyed this one as much as the first one and look forward to the next one when it come out.
Dranea on LibraryThing 11 months ago
This was a very cute, fun, educational book to read. The narrator is not a character in the book, and it has a very "I'm being read to" feel about it. It reminded me of Lemony Snicket in a way. This book is not dark like that series, but the narrator has that mysterious type of feel. And there are mysteries that the narrator is leading us to, we just know it...we just don't know when. There are loads of questions this book opens up for the Incorrigibles, who I found to be perfectly adorable. I would love to see these children in action. They are all very sweet, smart, and creative children. This is the second in this series, and I am afraid I am going to have to go get the first book in this series to see how it all begins (I have been saying that a lot lately! But I have been coming across so many wonderful books!)This story is very entertaining for younger readers, there is comedy, action, mysteries and wolf children! How much better can it get??? The author inserts all sorts of educational tidbits that the children will eat up without even realize they are learning anything at all. It flows right into the story, so the children will absorb the material, I think it is just magnificent how it is done. I think any classroom would benefit from having a copy of this for the students to read and parents would have just as much fun reading this to their children. It is a fun book with fun characters!!
foggidawn on LibraryThing 11 months ago
In this, the second book of the series, plucky governess Penelope Lumley and her three Incorrigible charges travel to London. Penelope is full of plans for educational outings, as well as a visit with her friend and former headmistress Miss Mortimer, but all does not go as planned. On the journey to London, they meet a sly stranger who seems intent upon stealing the travel guide Miss Mortimer sent to help them in their travels, and upon reaching London they meet other people, including a mysterious old woman, a sleazy judge, and a kind young man with a gleam of genius in his eye. Their time in London is full of ferns, elephants, velocipedes, pirates, letters, and a well-hidden gallery, which their otherwise useless guide book describes in great detail.The writing style and characters in this book are just as enjoyable as they were in the first book, but though the plot moves right along, it does not seem to resolve well at the end. There are many hints and clues that will, no doubt, be important later in the series, but the Incorrigibles' visit to Hidden Gallery itself is actually a bit anticlimactic. Readers who enjoyed the first book in the series will probably enjoy this one as well, but it certainly leaves a lot of loose threads for the author to deal with in upcoming volumes. Who is Judge Quinzey, really? Will Penelope and her new friend Simon meet again? Why is Miss Mortimer so insistent about Penelope using the hair poultice? What is the connection between the painting in the Hidden Gallery and the one in the attic of Ashton Place? How did the Incorrigibles end up being raised by wolves, and who are their parents? Where are Penelope's parents, and why must their correspondence with her be so secretive? The rest of the series promises to be just as enjoyable as the first two volumes, and readers of this book will be left hoping that additional volumes will be quickly forthcoming.
tjsjohanna on LibraryThing 11 months ago
The mystery thickens in this next story in the series ... who are these wolf-children? for that matter, who is Miss Lumley? I love the narrative style of this story - one critic describes it as "Jane Austen meets Lemony Snicket". This will stretch the reading skills of middle grade readers and the antics of the children should bring a smile or even a laugh at times.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How many pages are thre
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To be raised by wolves would be wierd. Not being able to talk to anyone else and having to eat raw meat. Ewwwwww!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago