Tom's Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce

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This essay is about Tom’s Midnight Garden a book written by Philippa Pearce. The story is about a lonely boy’s adventure in an enchanted garden, who finds a new playmate in Hattie and who shares in the adventure with him. It is also about “Tom’s development of the conscious state in childhood as he becomes aware of complex emphatic feelings and more diverse states of mind which comes about through his desperate need for freedom.” (Natov: 2009, 223) Furthermore how time works and relates to the storyline.

Tom Long is forced as he feels into exile away from his home, his family and playmate, Peter, his brother, who is in quarantine as he is infected with measles. So Tom is sent to his Uncle Alan’s and Aunt Gwen’s home. He views the stay with misgivings because they have no children that he can play with or even a garden as they live in a flat, which is part of an old manor house turned into flats. Which is owned by a reclusive old lady called Mrs. Bartholomew.

Tom notices a grandfather clock which chimes loudly and that his uncle Alan complains clangs the incorrect time of thirteen O’ clock. His Aunt shows him around the flat and proudly shows him his room, when he sees the window he says, “That windows got bars on I am not a baby!” (Pearce, 1993, p). One night, Tom, lay sleepless. He heard the sound of the clock strike so Tom goes to check the correct time; he leaves the flat to look at the clock in the hallway downstairs. It was midnight, but Tom had counted thirteen. Meanwhile he thinks he will investigate his surroundings, he goes to open the back door. He pulls the big bolt; he opens the door and is amazed to see a beautiful garden in front of him.

Next day when he enquires about the garden, Tom is told that he i...

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Bibliography

Montgomery, H. & Nicola. J. Watson eds. (2009). Children’s Literature Classic Texts and Contemporary Trends. H. Montgomery. Introduction. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke. p 203-6.

Montgomery, H. & Nicola. J. Watson eds. (2009). Children’s Literature Classic Texts and Contemporary Trends. R. Natov. Childhood and the Green World. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke. p221-5.

Montgomery, H. & Nicola. J. Watson eds. (2009). Children’s Literature Classic Texts and Contemporary Trends. M. Rustin. & M. Rustin Loneliness, Dreaming and Discovery. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke. p207.

Montgomery, H. & Nicola. J. Watson eds. (2009). Children’s Literature Classic Texts and Contemporary Trends. M. Nikolajeva. Midnight Gardens, Magic Wells. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke. P216-20.

Pearce, P. (1993). Tom’s Midnight Garden. Puffin Books Ltd, London

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