I shared previously about the book that Anita Silvey edited, Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Children’s book, and also shared a video of her discussing the book. Toward the end of the video, she shares a story from a conference that took place in Texas. An 11-year-old girl walked up to her and said, “The Secret Garden is my favorite book too.” Anita then asked the girl, “Well, what did you learn in it?” The girl replied, “I learned that no matter how broken you are or how difficult things seem, you can be healed some day and you can be made whole.” Anita said to the girl, “You really understand the message behind that book. It’s a very powerful message.”
I related to those words. That exchange—the girl’s experience and what she gained from the story was enough to make me want to read the book—a book that I have long known about only by title, yet hadn’t entered the world that lay beyond. I started with a sample copy on my Kindle and after reaching the end of the sample, clicked the purchase button without hesitation.
When I began reading the story, I had no idea how or where it began or that young Mary Lennox was such a sour puss of a child because of her upbringing. From the beginning until the end, I was pasted to the pages. I loved being a part of the transformation that Mary and those around her went through. Great beauty developed within the garden and in the hearts and souls of the children. This is now a book that I can include amongst other treasured stories—a truly magical book.