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date: 16 September 2019

Tom’s Midnight Garden (1958) 

The Oxford Companion to Children's Literature

Daniel Hahn

A novel for children by Philippa *Pearce. When his brother develops measles, Tom is sent away to stay with a childless uncle and aunt who live in a flat that is part of what was once a fine country house. Tom is bored and lonely and cannot sleep because of the rich food his doting aunt gives him. Then he hears the grandfather clock in the hall downstairs strike thirteen; going to investigate, he discovers a door that leads into a splendid garden. In the morning the garden is not there; Tom learns that it used to exist but was built over years ago. Each night he finds that he can return to it, and he soon becomes deeply involved in the lives of the people he meets there, the Victorian family who once inhabited the house. Most of all he becomes companion and playmate to Hatty, an orphan girl. His friendship with her becomes very close, but he soon realizes that time does not stand still in the garden: Hatty’s life is changing and his changes with it.... ...

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