Middle Grade Review: The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier


The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier

Age Range: 10 and up
Grade Level: 5 and up
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams (May 20, 2014)

Genre: Horror

Series: None

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (thank you!)

My Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

About the Book:

This much-anticipated follow-up to Jonathan Auxier’s exceptional debut, Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes,
is a Victorian ghost story with shades of Washington Irving and Henry
James. More than just a spooky tale, it’s also a moral fable about human
greed and the power of storytelling.
The Night Gardener
follows two abandoned Irish siblings who travel to work as servants at a
creepy, crumbling English manor house. But the house and its family are
not quite what they seem. Soon the children are confronted by a
mysterious spectre and an ancient curse that threatens their very lives.
With Auxier’s exquisite command of language, The Night Gardener is a mesmerizing read and a classic in the making. 

Find the Book:

Praise for Jonathan’s first book, Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes:

“I absolutely loved this book…As soon as I read the opening lines of the book, I was hooked.” –WIRED’s Geed Dad blog

“Auxier has a juggler’s dexterity with prose that makes this fantastical tale quicken the senses.” –Kirkus

fast-paced, episodic story, accompanied by Auxier’s occasional
pen-and-ink drawings, is inventive, unpredictable, and–like its
hero–nimble.” –Publishers Weekly

Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes is as delightful a magical story as readers ages 9-14 will hope to find. Wholly captivating.” – The Wall Street Journal’s Bookshelf

his debut novel, Auxier writes a charmingly well written story with a
dark edge and entertaining twists in language and plot to capture and
keep the attention of even the most reluctant reader.” – Library Media Connection

Awards and Honors:
2011 ABC New Voices Project Choice
2011 BookPage Best Book of 2011, Middle Grade

About the Author:

 Jonathan Auxier writes strange stories for strange children–including
Canada, Jonathan now lives in Pittsburgh with his wife and family. Find
out more by visiting www.TheScop.com, where he blogs about children’s
books old and new.

Website | Twitter | Publisher Website | Publisher Twitter

My Thoughts:

If your kids like creepy legends and spooky tales, this book is for
them. The Night Gardener immediately sucks you in and wraps you in its
vines, refusing to let go. It’s a haunting tale of two young children – a
brother with a crippled leg and a sister with a penchant for telling
stories…or lies— and the mysterious tree their master’s home is built

Things aren’t right at the Windsor home, and Molly sets out to find out
why. What she and Kip discover about their new home and the man that
wanders the grounds at night is both chilling and seductive.

Author’s name has delivered yet another classic to the middle grade
market. Kids that like things that go bump in the night will love this
book. The characters prove themselves worthy heroes as they take on a
legend that just might destroy them all.

Content: Scary scenes, and violence, but it’s not gory or overly detailed.

Source: I received a digital galley of this book in exchange for an honest review.


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