The Secret Garden – Week 1

Mary Lennox just might be the most selfish and ignored little girl on the face of the planet. What she wants, she gets, and if she does not get what she wants, she throws a temper tantrum. While she can view her parents from afar, they do not have time for her. Her father is a officer in the British Army, and her mother throws and attends parties. Life in India is ideal for them, but for little Mary, she is left alone with her servants, and to her own devices. When cholera breaks out, she suddenly finds herself all alone. Everyone is gone. Those who survived have run off, leaving Mary all alone in the house. When she is found by soldiers, she is sent to live in England, with her uncle. Mary knows nothing of life outside of India, and the thought of the new and unknown is frightening, but also exciting. She is curious about Misselthwaite Manor, and the new life that she will lead there.

Martha, is the young housekeeper who is helping to care for Mary. Martha is from Yorkshire, and her manner of speaking is rather hard for Mary to understand at first, but over time, she begins to understand, and also to question everything that she has known to that point. She is a difficult child, none of that is new information, she had been told several times by different governesses. Time and air has been good for her. With her body becoming used to more activity, her mind begins to work more as well. She begins to take interest in other things around her, and look for new ways to keep herself occupied. Martha brings her a jump rope, and her one friend – a robin- is about to show her to the most wonderful secret of all. But the missing garden is not the only strange thing she encounters… what are those strange sounds that sound like crying in the night? Could the manor be haunted?

This week we are reading Chapters 1-7

Questions:

1. Mary has never been denied anything she wants, but she suddenly finds the tables reversed when she gets to her new home. Do you think she should have been more excited?

2. The “forbidden garden” on the manor estates is something that has perked young Mary’s mind. She wants to know more about it, and where it is. For her is seems a shame to have it hidden away. Why do you think she has such a sudden interest in something other than herself?

3. Mary knows that what she is hearing in the house is not the wind, but someone crying. Why do you think everyone is trying to convince her otherwise?

 

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