'It was the garden that did it - and Mary and Dickon and the creatures - and the Magic.' An orphaned girl, a grim moorland mar with hundreds of empty rooms, strange cries in the night, a walled garden, with its door locked and the key buried - and a boy who talks to animals. These are the ingredients of one of the most famous and well-loved of children's classics. Through her discovery of the secret garden, Mary Lenx is gradually transformed from a spoilt and unhappy child into a healthy, unselfish girl who in turn redeems her neglected cousin and his gloomy, Byronic father. Frances Hodgson Burnett's inspiring story of regeneration and salvation gently subverted the conventions of a century of romantic and gothic fiction for girls. After a hundred years, The Secret Garden's critique of empire and of attitudes to childhood and gender, and its advocacy of a holistic approach to health remains remarkably contemporary and relevant. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful tes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Peter Hunt has written or edited eighteen books on the subject of children's literature, including An Introduction to Children's Literature (OUP, 1994) and Children's Literature: Critical Concepts in Literary and Cultural Studies (4 vols. 2006). He has written novels for children, and has edited Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, The Wind in the Willows, and Treasure Island for Oxford World's Classics. In 2003 he was awarded the Brothers Grimm Award for services to children's literature by the International Institute for Children's Literature, Osaka.