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A Reader of Fictions: The First Day of Spring - Noah and the Whale

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The First Day of Spring - Noah and the Whale

The Humming Room

Author: Ellen Potter
Pages: 182
ARC Acquired from: Feiwel & Friends via NetGalley

Brief Summary:
After the death of Roo's father, she is sent to live with her eccentric uncle, the existence of whom she never previously knew. Roo loves small spaces and being left alone; she doesn't trust anyone. At her new home on Cough Rock, in a house that used to serve as a hospital for children, Roo begins to open up, especially after finding a secret garden in the house.

Review:
I absolutely adore retellings of classic tales, and Potter's reimagining of Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden is no exception. Although she didn't make too many changes to the basic plot, she did manage to make the story her own.

Much of that comes from the changes in Roo's character and background. She has the stubbornness and touchiness of Mary, but, in her case, this is not born of indolence or having been spoiled. Instead, it seems that she was largely neglected and not given enough care. As a result, she trusts only herself and tries to avoid others.

I also loved Roo's connection to nature. She is much like Jack, in the fact that she understands nature better than people. She connects to the earth and to wild creatures, since they're so much like she is. The little black squirrel sounds like the cutest. Why don't I have wild animal friends?

Anyway, if you love The Secret Garden, prepare to take another trip into a magic garden that will restore those who enter it. If anything, The Humming Room is shorter than the original, so it's a very quick, satisfying read.

Rating: 3.5/5

"It's the first day of spring
And my life is starting over again
The trees grow, the river flows
And its water will wash away my sins"

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