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Tom's Midnight Garden Paperback – 3 Jan 2008

4.7 out of 5 stars 141 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford; First as Such edition (3 Jan. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192792423
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192792426
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.5 x 20 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (141 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 151,448 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

'This is a rare, moving story, beautifully written, and true in every way that matters.' (The Guardian)

'A timeless favourite' (Good Housekeeping)

'...haunting and lyrical children's story.' (The Daily Telegraph)

'...a story that came to be loved by children, parents and teachers everywhere.' (The Times)

'Masterpiece of English children's literature.' (The Independent)

Book Description

A timeless classic about Tom's adventures in his secret, midnight garden.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
First published in 1958 this is the consummate time travelling book, paving the way for the likes of Dr Who first seen just a few years later and all that followed right up to the recent 'The Time Travellers Wife' which is inadvertently a grown up take on Philippa Pearce's classic. Tom's travel back in time from present day Britain (although actually the 50's it's not identifiable as such) to a Victorian Britain is also a delightful introduction to bygone eras and period literature. Essentially the story is a collection of adventures had by an ordinary young boy sent to a relative while overcoming illness and an orphaned Victorian girl Hatty in the garden of her relatives extensive Victorian country estate. While Tom believes he visits every night, For Hatty the visits can be weeks, months or even years apart. When we first meet Hatty she is very young, a good couple of years younger than Tom and with each visit we see she is getting a little older.

There is a reason this book is still in print and it's because this book is the best children's book ever written. The fun adventures of the two protagonists provide timeless amusement, the mystery behind how or why Tom seems to travel through time provides suspenseful intrigue and the overarching story of Tom and Hatty's developing friendship and how it helps them cope with their respective difficult childhoods is moving beyond belief. Don't for one second think this is a girls book, boys too will love this story, Tom travels in time and gets up to all sorts of mischief -what's not to love? It is a book that's text heavy with only a few black&white illustrations so best for a confident reader aged 7+ but it works beautifully as a read-aloud story with perhaps a chapter a night before bed so no child need miss-out on this beautiful tale.
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Format: Paperback
A beautiful and tradtional story of magic, freindship & growing up. Adored by my children, loved by me.
Every school shelf should be stocked with this classic and every home shelf too.
When the trend for books is to 'gross out' young readers, this story reminds us that there is and always will be space for beautifully written well told enchanting stories.
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Format: Paperback
What an amazing book. I remember loving it as a child and so bought it to read to my 8 year old son at bedtime. We couldn't put it down and loved every minute of the exciting and beautifully written story. It will live in my memory as a wonderful shared experience with my son, especially moments where we snuck off to read extra chapters in the day! We both cried towards the end and I would list it in my top ten books, beating many of my favourite adult books. I can't recommend it enough to read to a child and loved the simplicity of the time described, when a boy is desperate to play in a garden, particulrly as our lives are so filled with computer and television screens today.
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A Kid's Review on 1 Nov. 2010
Format: Paperback
I am 10 and my Mum bought me this book.
It is very interesting, and each page makes me want to read more. I read a chapter every night before I sleep. When I lie down then I imagine myself exploring the Midnight Garden. I think other kids would like this book too.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I didn't read this book as a youngster but remembered seeing the 70s tv version. I didn't really know what to expect, but as I enjoy reading classic children's literature I thought I'd get it.

It really is an incredible book and throughly deserves all the accolades that have been heaped upon it. I found the quality of the writing to be taut and extremely controlled, the author knows exactly how to conjure scenes for full impact. One of the best things about this book are the numerous small vignettes and mini adventures in the garden: the bow and arrows; the bible; the geese; the named trees- one really lives the experiences with Tom and Hatty.
The standout moments are at the end of the book. The moonlit ice skating as they journey back on the frozen fen river was so haunting and vivid, the scene will stay with me; the shadowy meeting with Barty and then forwards to the incredibly moving moment when Tom realisies he has been denied the Garden and his wild calling out to the indiferent Hatty. And then, of course the ultimate meeting.

This is just about as good as a story book gets, if the ending doesn't move you somewhere deep inside then I can't imagine what would.

Read this book, you deserve it
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first read this classic children's novel years ago, when I was perhaps eight. Despite having been written about forty years earlier, it caught my imagination in a way few books could manage, and I read it numerous times. Over Christmas, I had a random desire to read it again, for the first time in about twenty years. This is very definitely a children's book rather than one of those that work just as well for adults, but even now, I still found it a delightful quick read.
The basic premise is that Tom is sent to stay with his aunt and uncle in the little flat while his brother is ill. The sense of being trapped and smothered is palpable, and the aunt who desperatly wants kids and the stuffy uncle who doesn't know what to do with them are both beautifully fleshed out. Before it was divided into flats, the building he's staying in was a huge house. The only remaining artifact from that time is an old-fashioned grandfather clock in the hallway, that always chimes the wrong time. One night, Tom hears it strike thirteen, and when he goes downstairs, seemingly finds himself in the house as it used to be - and most importantly, in its huge, magical garden, where he makes friends with a girl who used to live there.
This was probably the first time-travel novel I read and it's now a genre I love. For me, the best thing about time travel narratives are when they get really mind-bending, and this delivered that to a surprising degree for a book written so long ago and aimed at such a young audience. Because time doesn't run in a linear fashion in the garden. Though his friend is usually the same sort of age as him (ie. about 8 to 10), occasionally she's a toddler, and sometimes, she's a teenager or young woman.
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