While this book has garnered widespread praise for many years, even by trying to see it through the eyes of a 12-year-old, I didn't get much out of it. I've recently read several books that fall into the YA or juvenile category such as The Hunting of the Snark and Ms. Bixby's Last Day, both of which I found more satisfying. There's no denying this book has a good deal of charm, but it's very dated, very "English" and lacks both the realism and wonderful character portrayals of Ms Bixby and the infectious silliness of The Snark. I found it overly sweet and at times simply boring. I suspect a 12-year-old today would feel the same. Modern writers such as John Green are able to produce books that feature children and young adults or are largely aimed at YA readers and still appeal to mature readers. I'm afraid that our world has left books like The Secret Garden behind.