Little Lord Fauntleroy

Our rating: *****

To all appearance Cedric Errol is just another young American boy. He lives with his widowed mother in their tiny house and has a great many friends. Mr. Hobbs, the grocer; Dick, the boot-black; and Mary, the maid, all think the world of him. Imagine their surprise when it is discovered that little Ceddie is the only living descendant of the English Earl of Dorincourt. Cedric and his mother are packed off to England to live with Cedric’s grandfather the Earl. But only Cedric is to live with him. The Earl has never forgiven his son for marrying an American, and now he refuses to even meet Cedric’s mother. Can young Cedric win the heart of this grumpy, hating old man and use his sudden good fortune wisely? With his mother’s careful guidance, and his own stout courage, Cedric not only succeeds, but completely conquers.

A charming story. I love that so much fun and good reading can come out of a little paperback bought from one of those used book email loops. To me, that’s one of the measures of a good book. If you can forget that the paper and ink isn’t in the best of shape and enjoy the story, it’s a great story. But I digress. This is a very nice, easy to read story. The characters are memorable, the story sweet, and a good dash of stately comedy is thrown in there for good measure. If you fall asleep during anything but action, skip this book. Unless you’re up for a little stretch, of course. It’s so gentle and enjoyable, I find it well worth reading.

A Little Princess

Our rating: ***

Sara Crewe is one of the richest girls in her school, but her kind heart and vivid imagination are what wins her some special friends. Little does Sara know that hard times are around the corner, when it will be harder than ever to remain a true princess inside.

Mainly I rated this book three stars because it didn’t really appeal to me personally. I tend to be more of a fantasy/adventure reader, and this isn’t either of those. Also, there is one point where Sara makes some things up about heaven—but otherwise it’s a fairly wholesome story. So if you like stories set in 1900s England, then this book is for you.

The Secret Garden

Our rating: ****

Mary Lennox was a little girl that nobody seemed to want. After her parents died in India she was sent to live with her uncle in England. Her uncle was yet another person who didn’t really want her, and while Mary was provided with every comfort, she lived a lonely little existence. Mary was a very disagreeable girl, and that made everyone seem disagreeable to her. She seemed doomed to a very un-childlike life, but then the moor, and the sky, and the air started to work their magic on her. Mary began to make friends and discover the wonders of the outdoors. And the wonders of a garden that had been locked up for ten years.

Yes, this is another book that I could ramble on and on about. It’s very charming and enjoyable. Toward the end of the book there seems to be some shaky theology, but I’m not sure if it was intentionally written that way, or if it’s just the way I’m reading it. As a gardener, I loved the descriptions in this book. And it has such a great ending! The authoress seems to be able to introduce a character and help you get to know them in just the first paragraph.