Oh friends, I love reading books that just fuel my love of the middle grade category. The Humming Room by Ellen Potter is a very small book. Your eye might not even see it on the shelf – which is quite unfortunate. I’ve not seen much fanfare for The Humming Room which is a shame, because it’s a quiet, beautifully written take on The Secret Garden.
Roo Fanshaw’s parents are murdered — it’s a drug related homicide. Her family life is not exactly functional. So, when Roo discovers she has a rich uncle that her father never mentioned, it comes as a shock. Roo is whisked away to her Uncle’s home on Cough Rock, an island in the St. Lawrence. There she hears a mysterious humming noise, and if you’ve read The Secret Garden or see the movie, you know exactly were the plot is going.
You guys, I fricken love prickly orphans, hardcore. Roo can be a bit bratty sometimes — but y’all she jet wants a moment to herself. With a tutor and a servant in her face constantly, I can’t quite blame Roo. She feels a deep connection to nature and the earth, and okay I won’t get all dirty hippy on you because, gross, BUT yeah, Roo doesn’t feel that connection when everyone is constantly yapping around her and she’s trapped in lessons. It’s interesting to me, how at first, when we meet Roo, she’s a wild girl who prefers to be alone, rather than the company of others. BUT then we get to see her slowly let people in and trust. AND OH YOU GUYS the side characters. I won’t even mention them because they deserve to be discovered on your own, just TRUST when I say the side characters made The Humming Room for me.
Like most, middle grade fiction, The Humming Room by Ellen Potter is not heavy on romance. There are chaste friendships. AND I LOVE IT. I loved seeing Roo’s friendly side. I loved seeing her reach out to help others. Trust me, you will like this bit too, if you are similar to me.
The Humming Room is a breeze to read and obviously could be a gateway book for a middle grader. Ellen Potter’s latest may interest a kid in trying the classics, which is AWESOME. I certainly enjoyed this homage to The Secret Garden, and as a reasonably well read 24 year old am definitely thinking that I will read The Secret Garden soon, because I enjoyed The Humming Room so much.
Disclosure: Review copy provided by publisher