"Is anyone there?" Mary thought to herself, "This place is huge and gloomy! I don't want to live here!"
"What a queer thing to say!"
"If I live I may be a hunchback, but I shan't live. I cry every time I think of dying."
"Perhaps it has been buried for ten years," she said in a whisper. "Perhaps it is the key to the garden!"
Mary Lennox is an ugly, spoiled, and the most disagreeable looking child ever seen. A cholera has broken out in India and ends up killing both her parents, so she is sent to the gloomy Misselthwaite Manor to live with her uncle, Mr. Archibald Craven. When walking into her new place to live, she had never felt quite so contrary in her whole life.
"This garden has a lot of work to do!"
She meets her cousin, Colin Craven, and they share a lot of the same characteristics. Colin is always ill and could grow up to be a hunchback, but he is very scared of dying.
"Let's take you to the garden!"
"I want to know what being out in the fresh, spring air feels like!"
The red-breasted robin leads Mary to finding a key to a secret garden that she soon finds out was Mrs. Craven's.
"Look at me!"
Mary and her friend from the moor, Dickon, work together all day every day to make the dead and lifeless garden come alive. They both enjoy being together in the garden and Mary becomes much stronger and healthier, too.
Mary, Colin, and Dickon all come up with a plan to get Colin into the secret garden without looking too suspicious. They decide to take Colin in his chair to the garden every day to get some fresh air and become stronger.
Everyone at Misselthwaite Manor, and especially Mr. Craven, was amazed to see a boy who once thought he was going to die come running down the path with his head held high and his eyes full of laughter.