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The Magic Garden

4.06  ·  Rating Details ·  326 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews
A wealthy young girl spends her youth preparing for the return of a young man she has loved since childhood.
Hardcover, 181 pages
Published December 1st 1978 by American Reprint Company (first published 1927)
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Mar 31, 2009 Cindi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
This is my first Gene Stratton-Porter, and not my last. I have a list of highly recommended books by this author.

I'd really like to call this book a modern day fairy tale and as such, I think it is a really sweet, charming story. It's also a quick read.

I like what this book has to say about love and what it has to say about boys and girls saving themselves and developing their virtues for the man/woman that they will marry.

One part that was a little hard for me to follow was the amount of kisses
Belinda Collinge
Jan 02, 2009 Belinda Collinge rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-all-time-favs
I discovered this book quite by accident as a young girl. I was searching through the books on a shelf as a child and found this very old book, missing it's cover. I read it out of boredom since it didn't look very appealing to a 10 yr. became the book that really started my love for reading. I still own that crumbling book and will always cherish it.
Oct 19, 2008 Laurie rated it it was amazing
""The Magic Garden" (1927) was read to me by my mother. I later read it myself and to my children when they were young. For myself it was absolutely a "magical" experience. Gene Stratton-Porter takes you to places that are incredibly beautiful. "The Magic Garden" is an enchanted place that one does not want to leave. I can safely say that it is my favorite book of all time. I have always remembered the main character, Amaryllys, she was my favorite. This book was also my mother's favorite when s ...more
Mar 15, 2015 Bookista rated it liked it
Apparently I had a higher tolerance for sentimental goo when I last read this book 20 years ago. Imagine eating approximately 12 Krispy Kreme doughnuts, washing them down with a vat of hot chocolate, and then finishing up with a pan of brownies and you will be approaching the experience of reading this book. There is entirely too much kissing of "dimpled knees" in this book and way too many descriptions of begging for kisses like "hungry little birds beg for worms." There's only one scene where ...more
Dec 29, 2012 K. rated it liked it
Contains spoilers

Ah Gene, my dear, what was shaping up to be a lovey little story that kept me interested and entertained and happy with your writing and fortunately lacking in some of your more preachy/talky stories...why'd you have to ruin it at the end?

Had to be fair and give it 3 stars because I really did like most of it, it was really quite charming. But truly, the end was appalling and made me really unhappy.
Jun 01, 2008 Cherie rated it it was amazing
So beautiful!
Feb 16, 2012 Judy rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favorite books of all time. I have read it over and over through the years. The story of such pure, innocent and selfless love is something that is missing in a lot of current books. Though I enjoy a wide variety of current books, romantic and otherwise, it is nice to go back and read The Magic Garden now and then.
Nov 28, 2007 Graceann rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Good Novels
A poor little rich girl runs away from home and meets a poor boy who nonetheless has what she lacks. When her father finds her, he turns his priorities around and devotes himself to his family. She is reunited with the poor boy later on, in an ending that may seem syrupy to many, but if you can suspend your cynicism long enough, it's lovely.
Nov 09, 2008 Nina rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classics
This is classified as a youth book, but I found it a charming and sweet story. The innocence of the children, and the sweet tender love a child has for another. Gene Stratton-Porter wrote this book with Lee Thayer. Sometimes the books of today of an edge that forgets the innocence of a child.
Oct 08, 2011 Laura rated it it was ok
Kinda weird! This book had some redeeming qualities like the ability to paint an exquisite mental picture that you wanted to jump into, and illustrated the power of love. The ending? Let me know how you like it. It didn't seem to fit in with the book.
Dec 12, 2016 Megan rated it liked it
The Magic Garden is a beautiful story, but quite strange in places...especially with all the kissing.
Liza Verdon
Jul 28, 2012 Liza Verdon rated it it was amazing
Gene Stratton Porter never fails to make me laugh and cry. This book was really, really sweet.
May 01, 2015 Mellie rated it really liked it
Such a lovely story! Enjoyed it a lot!
Jun 12, 2017 Rebecca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
This book is a lot darker than the title might suggest, but that's about par for the course with Stratton-Porter. More interestingly is the way she uses themes that are still very much a part of books, specifically YA, today - much more hopeful, while still maintaining the basic cruelty of parts of the story.
Jan 01, 2017 Bt rated it liked it
Recommended to Bt by: Goodreads recommendations
The first half of this book was SO GOOD. It was about the lives of three lonely children and the effects of divorce and losing a parent. It was heart-wrenching but then so lovely and beautiful and joyful as the children learned to love and find happiness. It was SO GOOD. I was with it every step of the way, and I was so emotionally absorbed. The point of view and language used to discuss the kids was powerful and realistic. Kids are hard to write.

BUT then the kids started growing up, and the st
Tom Helmick
Mar 05, 2017 Tom Helmick rated it it was amazing
This is now thought to be Gene Statton-Porter's last book and it is lovely, almost a child's allegory.
Jul 10, 2014 Rachel rated it liked it
I don't know why I haven't picked up on this sooner, but I as I was reading, "The Magic Garden", there was a statement made by the author that was quite disturbing and I realized as I thought of her other books, seems to be a theme. That is, the lack of a mother and no need for a mother.

I have appreciated Porter's morals and character that she teaches in her books but am disturbed by this latest realization. It may stem from her losing her mother at such a young age and being raised by her fath
Mar 04, 2016 RaiRaiKen rated it really liked it
It was pure luck when I found a Hutchinson edition of The Magic Garden. I'm still trying to Google whether my copy is a 1927 or a 1937 edition. I'm guessing my book is 79 or 89 years old now :)

I've been devouring 20th century books as of late, and they always surprise me and fail to disappoint. I love seeing how different the past century was to this century.

The Magic Garden is a sweet, short story (I finished it within 2 to 3 hours) about a young, wealthy girl--unloved and neglected--who runs
Karen GoatKeeper
This novel was written around 1926 and it shows. Amaryllis is smart, well educated but uses it only to make a house beautiful for her true love. He is also well educated and a virtuoso violinist and gets to go on tours and give concerts. Very dated. It gets very preachy with 1926 stiff conduct and moral codes.
I did enjoy the first part of the book when Amaryllis was five, rich, abandoned by everyone and desperate to be part of a family who cares.
The ending was typical of the time but very disapp
Mar 05, 2008 Sesika rated it really liked it
I stumbled upon this book at the library at BYU-Hawaii. I fell in love with it, then I couldn't find it anywhere. Finally, two years ago I searched for it again and found it on Amazon. I love this story. It is sweet and I just really liked it. I own a copy if anyone is interested in reading it.

Brief plot: Sad, rich little girl runs away and is rescued by poor, young man. She falls for him. She hopes to meet with him again when she is grown. She secretly helps him financially and waits for the d
Megan Davis
Apr 21, 2010 Megan Davis rated it did not like it
After watching a movie of A Girl of the Limberlost, I thought this author must be amazing. So I read A Girl of the Limberlost and was enthralled and delighted until the second half of the book which was kind of dull and kind of unnecessary.

Moving on from there I tried The Magic Garden which had a great title reminiscent of The Secret Garden--but was absolutely awful. Rambling, incoherent, melodramatic, and a great slog of a journey this is not a book I would ever recommend. A pity because it wo
Feb 20, 2011 Alicia rated it it was ok
Shelves: adult-fiction
Definitely not my favorite Gene Stratton-Porter story. I think it was meant to be a modern take on a fairy tale. But the flat characters were hard to relate to, and the story was rather preposterous. Buying a love story between a 5-year old girl and a young teen boy is a stretch to begin with, but you throw in how rich she is, how quickly her father's character changes and the out of left field ending, and this feels like a slapped together story from GSP, who is normally a good author.
Oct 09, 2014 Eileen rated it liked it
Shelves: young-adult, fiction
I love this author but this is not her best book. Usually I like her books because they give a hopeful image of the great possibilities in life. This was such an extremely idealistic picture of love it was impossibile to believe, and therefore did not impart the hope and optimism I have learned to expect from her. The pure motives and unmixed emotions of her characters are so rare as to be unrealistic.
Mar 30, 2010 Dianna rated it liked it
Not my favorite Stratton-Porter, but not a bad little story, either. Five-year-old Amaryllis has grown up spoiled, raised exclusively by servants, without any love. Her divorced parents are absent. By running away, she manages to recapture the attention and love of her father and brother, as well as find true love (at the age of five!). The plot was a little odd to me but it was still a nice story if you can get over the five-year-old falling in love.
Jennifer Dudley
Jan 14, 2016 Jennifer Dudley rated it it was amazing
This is one of the most pure love stories I have ever read. I love it, looking for a digital copy. My copy is old and moldy but I try to read about every 5 years. ( By the way I am highly allergic to mold so reading it always cost me but OH it is worth it.)

This book was written by a pure heart and it infuses and encourages those of the same mind and heart.
Jul 27, 2012 Rhonda rated it it was amazing
This book reads like a fairy tale. I really enjoy the world and people that the Authoress creates. Gene Stratton-Porter creates perfect characters with high moral values and no evident flaws. In her own words, the authoress states that the characters she portrays "create a picture true to ideal life; to the best that good men and good women can do at their level best."
Kellyn Roth
I didn't enjoy The Magic Garden as much as I enjoyed Gene Stratton Porter's other novels. It began well, but it ended on a somewhat sad note. (view spoiler) You can read my full review here.
~Kellyn Roth
Renata Bursten
Oct 04, 2014 Renata Bursten rated it really liked it
I just found and ordered this (my third copy). It was the first Gene Stratton Porter I ever read and somehow it keeps disappearing on me. It is treacle-sweet but I absolutely love it.
Nov 14, 2016 Daisy rated it really liked it
If you like sad books, you'll love this. I actually started crying. You can't put the book down. Old fashioned but feels like it could have been written this year.
Keziah Cannon
Mar 04, 2016 Keziah Cannon rated it it was amazing
I love Gene Stratton-Porter, and I have read this book numerous times. It makes me feel hopeful and eager to be the kind of person Amaryllis becomes.
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She was an American author, amateur naturalist, wildlife photographer, and one of the earliest women to form a movie studio and production company. She wrote some of the best selling novels and well-received columns in magazines of the day.

Born Geneva Grace Stratton in Wabash County, Indiana, she married Charles D. Porter in 1886, and they had one daughter, Jeannette.

She became a wildlife photogra
More about Gene Stratton-Porter...

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