The Secret Garden is one of my favorite books of all time. So, when I heard about The Humming Room, by Ellen Potter, a retelling of Frances Hodgson Burnett's classic story about growth and renewal, I had to check it out.
1. A young orphan girl is sent to live with her reclusive uncle at his large and creepy estate
2. The girl brings a secret and nearly dead garden back to life
3. Everyone grows a little by the end
1. The changes that Potter makes bring the story squarely into a present day setting, and I think some of those changes cause The Humming Room to seem darker than The Secret Garden.
2. Pace. The Humming Room moves a lot faster than The Secret Garden.
3. Salt potatoes! Since the story is set in upstate New York, some details made reading the story especially fun for me, since I'm from there.
Overall, I liked The Humming Room. It's close enough to The Secret Garden for fans of that story to enjoy it, but it's far enough away to be able to stand on its own. I'd recommend this to readers 9 and older who aren't afraid of a little eeriness.