Study Guide

The Secret Garden Tough-o-Meter

By Frances Hodgson Burnett

Tough-o-Meter

(3) Base Camp

The Secret Garden is a fast-paced novel with just a few characters to follow, so it's not too difficult to read. The biggest challenge is getting through Dickon and the Sowerbys' thick Yorkshire accents, which Frances Hodgson Burnett spells out with lots of weird apostrophes and unfamiliar (to American readers, at least) slang. If you run into trouble understanding what the heck Dickon is talking about at any given time, try reading his lines aloud.