Frances Hodgson BurnettThe Secret Garden, A Little Princess, Little Lord Fauntleroy

Gretchen Holbrook Gerzina, Editor

The Library of America

Whenever you ask middle school readers what their favorite novel is, you’ll often hear “I love The Sercret Garden!” Possibly you’ll hear, “I love A Little Princess, too!” as both of these classic tales have been turned into big-budget movies with gorgeous settings and great acting in recent times. Very few readers realize that both of these novels were written by British-American author, Frances Hodgson Burnett. This collection from the Library of America pulls together these two beloved stories and adds another—her first published novel, also considered a classic, Little Lord FauntleroyIt includes 40 restored illustrations (20 in color) and three rare stories in which Burnett describes how she came to pen these books.

This delightful volume makes for a perfect gift . . .

Little Lord Fauntleroy is perhaps the least known of Burnett’s novels, but it’s influence is still seen in other works of fiction todayYoung Cedric Errol is a poor boy with a heart of gold growing up in 1880s New York city with his widowed mother whom he calls “Dearest.” Cedric is kind and considerate and always willing to help others, no matter what their station is in life. Luck has it that Cedric’s deceased father was the third son of the very rich and grumpy Earl of Dorincourt, and the two oldest sons have died due to their equally self-centered ways, leaving little Cedric as the sole heir. So, off Cedric goes to England to meet his grandfather and learn more about what it means for a poor American boy to become an English earl.

Burnett’s young hero or heroine always overcomes the obstacles placed in his or her path with grace and tenacity. Even modern readers feel like cheering on these plucky characters and booing those who would thwart their chance at success. This delightful volume makes for a perfect gift for those who enjoy strong-willed protagonists who, in spite of the odds, enjoy a happily ever after ending.