books · classics · fiction · illustration · literature · review · Yorkshire

The Secret Garden

The Secret GardenThe Secret Garden may be a very well-known and well-loved children’s classic, but it was only this year that I finally read this famous book. I already knew the general story line, the expectations of what the tale would include, after all a secret garden needed to be found.

Yet I didn’t expect the descriptions of Yorkshire, the development of the characters and the captivated spell the book held over me. It transported me to Misselthwaite Manor, to Mary’s world, her discovery of not simply a garden, but friendship, trust, hope and life. It reminded me of simplicity of the world a ten-year old can see, of the clear right and wrong, and the adventure life holds.

It may be a simple tale, beautifully told and illustrated in the folio edition I received. As much as I feel I should have read this earlier, maybe from an adults perspective I appreciate the tale more now, then if I’d read it ten years ago.

Regardless of your age, The Secret Garden is a classic we all need to read, to remember how precious and wonderful life can be.

book review · books · fantasy · fiction · Harry Potter · illustration · review

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

Hary PotterHarry Potter has been an obsession of mine for far too many years to count, I’ve read the books numerous times, seen the film, been to the studio tour and the Wizarding World in Orlando. Yet as more Potter elements are unleashed into the world I’m as excited as I was when the publication date for the Deathly Hallows finally arrived.

I’ve gained tickets to see the eighth instalment of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child as it enters the West End later this year, although still quite a while away. But my most recent Potter acquisition is the very first story: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone has been beautifully illustrated by Jim Kay, bringing magic and mischief to Harry’s much loved world.

harry potter 2It’s a new awakening to a tale many of us are familiar with, yet these different faces, Harry’s in particular seem to capture more of the character then I think the films may have done. There’s a sadness in Harry’s face that truly depicts his miserable existence at the Dursley’s, Hagrid booms through the page, the very half giant of his description. I also love the settings from the quirky Diagon Alley, with shops all shapes and sizes to the enormous grandeur of Hogwarts transporting us to the magical world.

harrypotter-editionThe story now contains through Kay’s illustration elements of Harry’s Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them textbook, to Hagrid’s borrowed Dragon Breeding library book. The illustrations enhance Rowling’s story, capture all the magic and suspense of the tale, it’s beautifully done and cleverly intertwines all aspects of Potter’s new-found world.

This is a brilliant book for any potter fan, or to entice those who are yet to enter the wizarding world, published by Bloomsbury and priced at £30, it’s a book to add to your shelves.