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Children's Fiction Fantasy & Magic

The Night Garden

by (author) Polly Horvath

Tundra Book Group
Initial publish date
Oct 2018
Fantasy & Magic, Humorous Stories, Friendship
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2017
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2018
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 9 to 12
  • Grade: 4 to 7


From Newbery Honor-- and National Book Award--winning author Polly Horvath, a magical middle grade novel that features a garden that grants wishes.

It is World War II and Franny Whitekraft lives with her parents, Sina and Old Tom, on a farm on Vancouver Island. Their peaceful life is interrupted when their neighbor, Crying Alice, begs Sina to watch her children while she goes to visit her husband at the military base where he is stationed because she suspects he's up to no good. Soon after the children move in, letters start to arrive from their father, and the children don't understand what they mean until it is too late to stop him from doing something that threatens to change their whole lives. Can the ancient, forbidden night garden that supposedly grants everyone one wish help? And if it does, at what cost?

About the author

Polly Horvath is one of the most highly acclaimed authors writing today. Her books include The Canning Season (winner of the National Book Award and the CLA Young Adult Book Award), Everything on a Waffle (a Newbery Honor Book, an ALA Notable Book and winner of the Mr. Christie's Book Award and the Sheila A. Egoff Children's Literature Prize), The Trolls (a National Book Award finalist), My One Hundred Adventures (a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year, a Booklist Editors' Choice, a Kirkus Reviews Best Children's Book of the Year and winner of a NAPPA Gold Award and the Sheila A. Egoff Children's Literature Prize), and Northward to the Moon (an Oprah's Book Club Kids' Reading List selection and winner of a Parents' Choice Gold Award). Her most recent book is Mr. and Mrs. Bunny — Detectives Extraordinaire!

Polly Horvath's profile page


  • Short-listed, National Chapter IODE Violet Downey Award

Editorial Reviews

"The inimitable Horvath . . . infuses her novel with such heart, zest, and humor in the small moments that she's created a book her devoted fan base will cherish. Perfect for fans of [the] Penderwicks books or The Mysterious Benedict Society series." --STARRED REVIEW, Booklist

"The quirky characters and Franny's dry-humored narration stand out as Horvath invokes classic literary elements." --Publisher's Weekly

"Horvath’s bright prose and unerring sense of timing keep us turning pages to arrive at the book’s final, transcendently profound, scene." --The Horn Book
"Franny's first-person narration is wry and intelligent, infused with Horvath's trademark humor." --Kirkus Reviews
"[A] pacy adventure that twins mystery and magic with elegant moments and beautiful descriptions." --Quill & Quire
"National Book Award winner Horvath writes with accessible eloquence, making what would be fantastical in another setting quite plausible on this island populated with whimsical, winsome characters… Thoughtful, hilarious, and moving; repeated readings reveal even more to appreciate in this superbly crafted tale. An essential purchase for all middle grade collections." --School Library Journal
"[A] story of community and love and families in all their messy glory." --STARRED REVIEW, Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"The Night Garden is a tapestry of mystery, mermaids, ghosts, hermits, and UFOs, embossed with a strong message about love. Polly reminds us, with humour and her quirky assembly of eccentric, mischievous misfits, that families come in an infinite combination of patterns, including family by choice." --The Winnipeg Review
"3/4… Horvath’s work is always something special, with a touch of magic that makes it seem as though it takes place in another world, although it is very much our own… there is no shortage of Horvath’s signature witty, pithy, and philosophical writing… Recommended." --CM Magazine

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