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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
C.S. Lewis and The Chronicles of Narnia move over. Enter the story about Lady Anna's garden. It's a secret garden, although not quite in the same vein of Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden. The secret in this story is how the boys, brothers Will and Ken, must first find the garden and then save it from evil's destruction. The discovery and the conflict is a journey in which Will and Ken learn how to fight for good over evil in a way that requires them to set aside the usual sibling rivalry and discord.
The story begins with the discovery of Lady Anna's wand, left behind by the previous owner of the new house that Will and Ken move into with their parents. It's in a more rural setting than the boys were used to and, in order to find 'something to do,' they start exploring the house, the yard and the fields beyond. What they find is pure fantasy, but in reality they discover each other and a brotherly bond that can't be severed. The journey into the garden, another dimension, begins with the labyrinth in the field behind their house. It is a journey they must take together in order to succeed.
This is a fascinating tale of fantasy kingdoms, magical spells and evil characters coupled with genuine family bonding, young curiosity and a good mystery that may (or may not) include a witch and perhaps even a wizard, and a few unusual characters like buddlewogs and snuggle bunnies. The author, S. Thomas Kaza, is a master of the science fiction and fantasy realms. He even writes ghost stories. His stories are action-packed and full of endearing plots and characters. Perhaps Lady Anna's Garden will become a series, now that the boys have entered the realm of the secret garden. Well done!