Reviews — scroll down to add yours!

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😊  The Secret Lake 2 📚

📚  I am delighted to confirm that Return to the Secret Lake is now out! 📚 

Reviews of this long-awaited sequel, which is full of twists and turns to the end, have been wonderful! It was such a joy to reconnect with the original characters (who had been waiting very patiently for me!) and meet a few new ones…

❤️ 😊 Click or tap here to find out more and read early reviews on Amazon 😊 

How to post a review of The Secret Lake
or Return to the Secret Lake

  • Scroll down to the comments section, found at the end of the section below called ‘Children’s Reviews’ —its quite a long way to scroll!
  • Here you’ll find full instructions on how to post your own review.
  • Note that I always reply to reviews – those replies show up in the comments area.
  • I then post a copy of the original review higher up in coloured text.
  • If you are under age 13 please ask a grown-up to help you, or they can post on your behalf.

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Click here to review The Secret Lake on
*5 stars from The Writers’ Advice Centre for Children’s books*

Click here to review The Secret Lake on
*5 Stars from an Amazon Top 1,000 Reviewer*

Virtual School Visits – UK and Worldwide

Parents/Carers: if you think your child’s school might like a virtual school visit, please do ask them to get in touch. Visit the school visits page on my main author website

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😊📚Children’s Reviews 📚😊

(You will find my replies to each review at the bottom in the comments area.)


Blake – June 2023

Dear Karen

In my opinion I love the secret lake because how Stella and Tom meet Emma,Jack,and Lucy. next I though that it was very sad when they had to leave Jack but Tom had some courage and went back for him. then the moles where really funny they stop for a little bit and came back in chapter 17 and 18. Lastly it was very sad how the book ended. overall I loved this book and it characteristics I would recommend this book to people that like mystery and action.

from, Blake

Anonymous – June 2023

The Secret Lake is a book packed full of adventure, twists, and fun. i like when my group thought jack cut off his leg but he released his leg from a vine. i really love this book too!

Anonymous – June 2023

it was a good book and the book was interesting.
the characters were tom and stella was scared at first then started to become brave.
tom was vary brave he would do anything . Then I liked the book because the moles were fat like a coconut. that was about this book the END

Sparky – March 2023

The secret lake was a captivating read, I loved the setting and character descriptions! I have just finished reading return to the secret lake and it was as good ( if not better ) as the first! I can’t wait to read the third. I definitely recommend this book. :)

Rhys – March 2023

Dear Karen,
I just finished reading The Secret Lake and I was amazed by your one of a kind ability to write about all the adventures Tom and Stella went on. I was also intrigued by your way of writing twists and turns which made me express many different feelings about the book. One final thing is that I would totally recommend this amazing story to many others that are looking for a really good book to read for school or just for fun. Anyways, thank you for writing such a masterpiece and for showing your writing talents to the world. – Rhys

Noah – January 2023

I LOVED the secret lake! It is my second favorite book EVER!

Tammy  – Age 8 – January 2023

Hi my name is Tammy. I am 8 years old. I LOVED The Secret Lake. I was supposed to do a project for school on it but then when it got to Charlie Green and Jack it was a book that I wasn’t just reading for a project. It was more! Half of the time I felt like I was in the story! I can’t wait to read the next one!!!

Kristy Evelhoch – January 2023

Hi Karen my name is Kris age 67. I loved both of the secret lake books and I’m excited for the third one to come out. I love reading mysteries and this book keep me wanting to know what happens next. I also have the hardy boys mysteries books and a few of the Nancy drew mystery books. Both your books and the hardy boys books are excellent for anyone who loves to read. Are you going to have other mystery type of books coming out soon if so please let me know. Thanks Kris Evelhoch

Arran Diaz – January 2023

Wwwwwwwwwwoooooooooowwwwwwwwww, I loved this story.
I loved the excitement of the outdoor adventure, and comparing the different clothes, house, and children’s behaviour of the two time periods. The iPhone and friendship bracelets were fabulous.
My favourite characters were:
1. Tom, because he was always getting told off, but cared a lot for his sister and Jack, and
2. Jack, because of his good accent
I have some questions to ask:
1. Do you live in a house like the one in the story? It sounds like a great place to play.
2. Did you have a dog and did you call it Harry?
3. Is there still a lake or did it really dry up?

Looking forward to reading the Return of the Secret Lake with mummy.
Thank you for writing the book, it’s now my number 1 book in my mind.

Ruby Kodua – December 2022

I really loved the mystery and adventure of the entire book hope other people do too!

Jameson – December 2022

I love the book. It’s so good! I’m very excited for the next book. I couldn’t put the book down!

Adelaide Astle (Aged 10) & Barbara Carr- November 2022

My name is Adelaide and I am 10, I love this book because of the time travel, and I love history. I read this book with my Grandmother while she was here for a visit. The story was so exciting and we couldn’t wait to read the next chapter . My favourite character was Lucy, and my Grammies favourite was Tom. I liked Lucy because she was the cousin that everyone talked about and then she was was suddenly in the story with lots of spunky character. My Grammy liked Tom because he was brave in the face of trouble and did everything he could to help his new friend. I just found out about “The Return to the Secret Garden” and look forward to reading it.
I was so excited to write a review, and look forward to hearing from you. I like to write poetry and stories too,

Liliana Mello – October 2022

I just finished reading book two I can’t wait for book 3. It was amazing your books never cease to amaze me. I would also like to thank you for taking the time to write back to all 513 reviews including 2 of my own. I loved how you made the connections to the future so well like I said it was like I was right there. I LOVE your books i’m definitely begging my mom to get me book three as soon as it is out. P.S. the spelling is better because I got Grammarly and I know the British spelling and American spelling are different because I love the harry potter books. Again thank you so much for taking the time to respond to over 500 reviews I hope I can be the reader you think of when you are writing book three. If you can I would love it if you could add a character named Liliana or make a reference to someone named Liliana that would mean SO much to me i know you wont actually do it because Liliana is not a usual name like Tom or Stella bt it is just fun to hope
have a great day, Liliana Mello

Maddie – Age 10 – October 2022

Hi Karen,
I loved, loved, loved the secret lake I could not put it down!

Isaac M – Age 10 – October 2022
Amazing book. Loved the adventures Tom and Stella had. The secrets behind characters in the present is a wonderful connection and very mystic in the way it is hidden. The moles are very interesting. Oops! I shouldn’t have said that.

Liliana Mello – October 2022

This book is amazing I got sucked into the story I felt like I was there watching the story I will say again this book is amazing it is definitely going in my top 5 favorite books. I can’t wait to read return to the secret lake. Thank you for making this book. :)

Anonymous – September 2022

I like this book because it’s interesting!

Analina – Age 10 – August 2022

I choose to read the Secret Lake because I love mystery books. The book is about an old lady name Mrs. Moon who forgets about life events and people she meets. Mrs. Moon has a dog name Harry who ran away from her. Tom and Stella who are the main characters in the book are staying with their Uncle Charlie Green while they are on summer vacation. Uncle Charlie lives next to the Secret Lake. Stella and Tom offer to find Mrs. Moon’s lost dog, Harry. On their search for Harry, they discover a secret tunnel and an underground lake.

While trying to find the lost dog, they go on amazing adventures and meet interesting people along their journey. It’s a page turner as their adventures takes twist and turns, and it keeps the audience on the edge of their seat. You cannot put the book down because you want to know what happens next and if they will ever find their way back home as well as finding Harry.

Not only is the Secret Lake a mysterious and captivating read, but I also think the Secret Lake would make an exciting movie to watch. It was fascinating to find out what happens in the past and the present. Sometimes in life, we wish we could travel back or forward in time. This book is perfect for a reader to imagine what life could have been like one-hundred years ago.

I give The Secret Life a 5 out of 5, and I hope you enjoy the story as much as I did!

Hannelore – Age 7 – August 2022

This book was awesome! My mom and I read it together and I really enjoyed the story.

Michael L – Georgia USA – August 2022

I really enjoyed reading Secret Lake and Return to Secret Lake because these books kept my interest.
There was time travel, mystery, friendship, and adventure.
The characters learned to love, forgive, and be kind to each other.
They work as a team and make it through the hardships that they had.
I appreciated how Ms. Inglis included real history in the stories, as she compares modern times and Edwardian times. That was cool!
Thank you, Ms. Inglis, for writing great stories!
Michael L.
Georgia, USA

Eleanor – Age 8 – July 2022

hi! I really liked the book because they had a lot of fun adventures! I can’t wait to read the next book! Eleanor, age 8

Charlie – Aged 10 – July 2022

I’m 10 years old and am obsessed with reading, of all the amazing books I’ve read this is definitely one of my favourites. I have already read this 3 times and can’t wait to get the sequel. this book is perfect for people like me who love reading just for the sake of it. My favourite types of books are by far fantasy adventure and this book fits right into that category. A great book, keep up the good work.

Laura Gray Bridges (via her 10-year-old granddaughter!) – July 2022

Hi, Karen! I borrowed this book from my 10-year-old granddaughter. Loved, loved, loved it! The characters all have their own “voice,” the setting, the action, everything was so well crafted. The mystery (what’s going on here? Can they get home? Can they go back?) kept me turning the pages. Some nice twists–a couple that I suspected but was unsure if I would be right! Five Stars!! We’ll be reading more of your work!

Ella – age 10 – June 2022

I Karen I loved this book so much I had to read it for a book report and as soon as I got the book and saw the cover knew the book was right for me. Thank you so much for publishing this book everybody appreciates it! Ella age 10!

Lukas – Age 8 – June 2022

My name is Lukas and I am 8 years old. I have read both books and liked them both very much. They have a great story line about time travel and friendships between kids like me. Both books really held my attention. My Grandmother bought them for me and we took turns reading them together. We finished each one over a long weekend visit. You will love it too!

Brooklyn – age 9 – June 2022

Hi I’m am Brooklyn and 9 years old. This book was amazing there were a lot of surprises (not going to give any away) I loved the characters and it was a great topic for kids. Can’t wait to read “Return to the secret lake.”

Emmy J – June 2022

I loved this book and would give this book 4 and ¾ stars out of 5. At the beginning of the story, it was a bit confusing how the time tunnel worked between the past and present. That is the only reason I am not giving it 5 starts. I loved the end of the book but won’t give anything away. Emma was my favorite character because she loved adventure and was a thoughtful person. Will Tom and Stella see Emma again in the future? Will Charlie Green come back into their lives? Thank you for writing this book.

Brooklyn – Age 9 – June 2022

My name is Brooklyn and I am 9 years old. Me and my grandma got this book to read together. We both agreed that it was a great book and that there were tons of surprises that we would never have guessed that they would be in there! SUCH AN AMAZING BOOK!!!!!!!! Read this book and you’ll enjoy it too!

Samantha P – May 2022

This book is about two kids: Stella and Tom. They have quite an adventure. I love that they help a boy with an Impossible quest. My favorite character is Stella (but otherwise I loved everybody). Loved this book! Haven’t heard of it? Go to: and check out

Willow – Age 9 – May 2022

Hi Karen! This is Willow, I am 9 years old, I have read the secret lake!!! it was Fantastic! You are a great writer! I think every one should be able to get a chance to read The Secret Lake! The Secret Lake is my new favorite book! I think you should keep writing, and I for sure would recommend you to All my family and Friends!


Juliana – Age 10 – April 2022

This book is amazing! And at the end when they found out […….], I was so surprised!

Avery – Age 9 – April 2022

I just finished book 2, Return to the Secret Lake! It’s so good! If you read the first book you’ll LOVE this one! My favorite characters are Emma, Stella, Lucy and Sophie! Are you going to make a series? This is my favorite book, and I’m definitely going to recommend both books to my friends!

Jonah – Age 9 – April 2022

The Secret Lake is the book we just finished. The book is really awesome. My favorite character is Jack. I think this book is really good! There was a lot of mystery. This book is great! Jonah Age 9

Gavin N – April 2022

I love The Secret Lake. It has tons of mystery. It has someone going to jail. It is fun and exciting book. I feel like everyone should get this book. I love the surprises. It’s kinda weird at the end.

Mia – Age 9 – April 2022

Hi, my name is Mia. I just finished The Secret Lake. I like it a lot. Why do I like it? I like it because it gets me excited. I wonder what might be next? It is a fun book! It is full of mystery and happiness. I am age 9.

Molli K – April 2022

I just love this book. I like Stella. I love the surprises. It’s about a time tunnel. I’m happy I read it. You should read it.

Jake W – Age 9 – April 2022

The Secret Lake was amazing and cool! My favorite character was Lucy. You should absolutely get this amazing book!-Jake age 9

Graham M – April 2022

I loved The Secret Lake. It was an awesome book. It had mystery, excitement, and clues. It also had sadness. It told you where they went and when they went. It was exciting!

Ella R – April 2022

In Mrs. Haigh’s third  grade class we read The Secret Lake. I loved this book! The Secret Lake has a lot of twists and turns. There were many adventures. Some of the characters were Mrs. Moon, Tom, Stella, Charlie Green, Lucy, and Jack. The Secret Lake was one of the best books I have ever read!

Jocelyn K – April 2022

I like The Secret Lake. My favorite character is Stella because she is relatable to me. It was funny at some points. Other children must get this book!

Lauren S – April 2022

I loved The Secret Lake. It had lots of twists and turns and it was mysterious. My favorite character is Stella. All of the characters are cool. I would get this book if I were you.

Kinsley Asmus – April 2022

I like The Secret Lake because it is funny, sad, and fun. I prefer this book over “Catstronauts”. It is great. I love it because it has a lot of twists and turns. I love it! Mrs. Moon is my favorite character.

Max (Aged 9) and Sebastian (aged 6) – April 2022

My mum has just finished reading it to my brother and I and we both think it is amazing! We can not wait to read the sequel.
Max (9yrs) and Sebastian (6yrs).

Class 4J – Rupert House School – March 2022

Dear Karen

We are 4J from Rupert House School. We have just finished The Secret Lake, we absolutely loved it! It was amazing! Our favourite characters were Emma and Harry. Every time we opened the book we were excited to see what was going to happen and we didn’t want to stop reading it. You kept us in suspense! We made lots of guesses about who people were during our reading but we didn’t suspect Mrs Moon would […..] and we didn’t guess who Charlie Green was either! Thank you so much for writing this book, we all loved it and we will be buying the next book in school so that we can read more about Stella and Tom!

best wishes
from 4J

Pinky — March 2022

I LOVED the secret lakes! I hope you make the 2nd book. :))))

Ja’leya – Age 10 – February 2022

I love The Secret lake. I love chapter 18 because I love how it was a suprise. Also, it was really, really sad but in my opinion it was the best chapter and book I ever read.

Fernhurst Primary School Book Club – West Sussex – February 2022

Children at Fernhurst Primary School Book Club have enjoyed reading this book!
The friendships within the book showed loyalty. This was seen as a strength of the book because it teaches you about kindness and the importance of this.
Harry linking the past and present together was an interesting twist! It made us consider if we are even real…
The […..]* at the end of the book was considered unusual in a children’s text.
Overall the children rated this as a five star review and they are looking forward to the sequel!

* Karen’s note, I’ve hidden one word here just in case someone reads this who hasn’t yet read the book – but it’s in full in the comments area at the end of this page, where I also reply 😊

Ruth – Age 7 – February 2022

Dear Karen Inglis,
I really liked The Secret Lake. My favourite character is Stella. What do you like about being an author? I really hope you write a sequel to The Secret Lake. My favourite part is when they figure out […….].* Karen’s note: I’ve hidden a top secret piece of information here just in case someone reads this who hasn’t yet finished the book 😊
From Ruth, age 7

Aadya – February 2022

Dear Karen
Your book was fabulous. I relished it very much. ‘The Secret Lake’ is one of the impressive and delightful books I’ve ever read. I loved the way you have written your book in simple lucid language for the readers to enjoy your spectacular book. It was very exciting and adventurous. I felt like I was right there seeing everything with my eyes. There was an astonishing twist at the end. Loved your book!

Caleb – January 2022

I really liked your book . Please make more books because I really liked this one. Also please make more adventurous books . You are a very good author . I hope I become an author like you when I grow up.

Ella – Age 8 – January 2022

I enjoyed this book because it is interesting and exciting. Tom and Stella are spending summer vacation at Charlie Green’s garden. They have a forgetful and friendly neighbor, Mrs. Moon. Her dog Harry begins their adventure together. You have to read this book!!!

Fiona – Age 8 – January 2022

To Karen,

My name is Fiona. I am 8 years old.

I have read The Secret Lake and it was amazing. 😃

Thank You!

Eva Graves – Age 12 – January 2022

Hi Karen!
I really enjoyed Secret Lake! I have to confess, I just picked it up off of our bookshelf (I think my sister received it for her birthday last year but never got round to reading it). I have highly recommended it to my sister (age 10) You are a talented and creative author. You invented some amazing characters (and my favourite is Jack), and the plot twists are phenomenal! I really did believe that [……*] was […..*] for just a second after I read that part! I love when authors let a character find something out, but don’t tell the readers until later. Thank you so much for this amazing book, I can’t wait for the sequel!!

I hope your family had a relaxing Christmas and a Happy New Year!

*Note from Karen — I’ve hidden a couple of secrets here just in case anyone reading here has not yet read the book 😊

Amelie Patel – November 2021

Dear Karen,

THIS BOOK IS AMAZING! I love the characters and it has a clever twist. You are a very talented writer thank you for this book. Is a classic. Definitely have it on your bookshelf.

Ava – November 2021

I really liked The Secret Lake because the characters are really gripping! I loved the clever twist and I think that this book really makes you think and makes you look at the world differently. It is a perfect classic, which you should definitely have on your bookshelf!

Summer Dawson – October 2021

This was one of the best books I have ever read! I loved how it kept making the mystery more and more intense, and interesting. I could not stop reading it! I loved the characters, and everything about this book!

Mrs Lacy’s 6th Grade – USA – October 2021

We loved that this book was packed with adventure and mystery. The development of the characters throughout the story helps you make connections and really get to know each character on a different level. The Secret Lake is full of plot twists, emotion, and blossoming friendships to keep you hooked the whole way through. If you are looking for a story jammed packed with adventure, time travel, and a little bit of magic, we highly recommend The Secret Lake. It was the perfect novel study to begin our year!

Gigi Christiano – USA – October 2021

Hello Karen! I wanted to say how very much I enjoyed reading this book to my son. He actually picked it out himself on amazon — it was his first run through of a chapter book. I have not read a children’s book for many, many years and we such had a great time of it, especially because it was about going back in time. The last time travel book I read was Can I Get there By Candlelight by Jean Slaughter Doty! Still one of my favorites to this day! The Secret Lake really brought back to me some of that childhood sentiment of reading a well written book and absolutely falling in love! Thank you for such a delightful and well-written story! Look forward to reading the continuation!

Donovan – Age 8 – October 2021

i loved this book! i couldn’t stop reading it! im so happy you’re making part 2. :)

Alexandra Campbell – September 2021

Dear Karen Inglis,
Thank you for sharing the Secret Lake with us. It is a good and adventurous book. The surprises make the book really interesting. The problem and solution is a great part of the book. Please publish more books!

Christina Feldkamp – August 2021

I write curriculum for childcare and am now writing the summer camp plans for 2022. Our theme is time travel, so your book popped up in my searches for something for children ages five through about 12. I just received my copy the other day and absolutely loved it! The story is very interesting, the characters are fun to get to know, and I loved the mysteries intertwined within the story. I will include this for our first week of camp and look forward to reading more of your books. PS I think a film of it would be great!

Camille – Age 8 – August 2021


Jacob – Age 7 – August 2021

It was amazing i liked every thing except when […..] Emma was my favorite character. I got a lot of emotion at the end oh and please make a movie because if there was one I would watch it. I also liked when Stella recorded and shown what crawly had said to Emma. and the magic moles YES I said magic moles because making time tunnels is magic. also I want a sequel where Emma is alive so that’s my comment .

*Note from Karen — I’ve hidden a top secret bit of information here!

Emma – Age 8 – July 2021

This is an awesome book! Emma age 8

Penelope – Age 7 – June 2021

Hello, I loved The Secret Lake. It was mysterious and exciting! 👧🏼👦🏼🐶

Alma – Age 10 – June 2021

I loved this book! It was amazing! SO. MANY. TWISTS! Please make a series!

Angela – Age 10 – June 2021

To Karen, I have so many things to say I don’t even know where to start! I loved the Secret Lake it may now be one of my favorite books!I really adored the part where Crawley gets […] ,and when they found out that [….]* !Thank you for writing this book,I will advertise it to my friends.

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a comment here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book.😊

Lova – May 2021

I thought the book was really good. And I loved how mysterious the book was.

Niamh – May 2021

I liked it when we found out that Harry had been time travelling back to […]* I think that if there were a book two, I would probably have more of a focus on Sophie and her story because we don’t find out as much about her compared to Emma.
5/5 – I would recommend the book.

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a comment here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

Teddy – May 2021

I think that I liked Chapter 6 – The Boy Thief. I liked getting to find out who Jack actually is and we discover and wonder who has actually stolen some silver.
We find out it was [….]* in later chapters.
I liked Stella and Tom and how they try and make friends with Jack. There should be a Secret Lake 2 where they get Mrs Moon/Emma from the past and bring her back and go on more adventures.
I want to know if the moles can make another tunnel – probably to another dimension. A future book! What their house is like 100 years in the future?
10/5 rating!

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a comment here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

Alexandra – May 2021

I really liked the story. I really liked Chapter 18 when Charlie Green wrote a letter and Tom gasped and found out Charlie Green […]*!
I was impressed that my friends had already thought about Charlie Green possibly being […]* at first.
I really recommend this book, I would give it 5 stars.
In book 2, Mrs Moon could come back to life. Chapter 14 – The Forgotten Clue – was also one of my favourites.

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a few comments here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

Harry – May 2021

I thought The Secret Lake was a really good book. My favourite chapter was Chapter 18 – I looked at the part where Tom went upstairs and found out […]* and it was so surprising. It was sad to hear that […]* . I would recommend the book and actually give it 50 out of 5 stars. There should definitely be another book.

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a few comments here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

Violet – May 2021

My favourite character was Stella because she was adventurous and kind. I liked it when the characters get caught in the house when they are hiding up the chimney. I also liked the part where Tom finds out that the [….]* in the mud was […]*
I would give the book 5/5 stars and recommend it to others.
I think there should be another book for Stella and Tom!

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a few comments here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

Mattie – May 2021

My favourite character was Tom because he was really kind – he wanted to go back for Jack.
I would give it 5 stars and definitely recommend it to others.

Nancy – May 2021

My favourite part of the book was when we found out that Mrs Moon [….]* – when we had thought she might […]*. There were lots of cliffhangers that meant we kept wanting to read on. If there were a book 2, I would like to find out if Sophie [….] *in the future.
I’d rate the book 10/5!! I would definitely recommend this book.

*Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a few comments here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊 But they are great comments, Nancy!

Nalisha – May 2021

My favourite part of Chapter 12 was when Stella and Tom were trying to tell everyone that Jack was not a thief. Stella and Tom are really kind friends. My favourite character was Stella because she became more and more adventurous!
I would really recommend this book – I would give it 4 ½ stars out of 5.

Anna – May 2021

This book is awesome! I picked this book for my book report and it was a great choice. I really enjoyed the powerful meanings of friendship. Thank you for creating this book!

Freddie – Age 8 – May 2021

I absolutely loved the secret lake, it was probably the best book I have ever read. I loved that it was a bit of a mystery story and I really liked the ending.

Skye – Age 9 – May 2021

I loved this book it was very exciting and adventuress. It is very mysterious witch I really enjoyed. I loved when in the end they find out that Charlie Green [….]* It made me sad when Charlie moved away because […..]* and it was very upsetting. I loved the character Mrs. Moon, and how she told them the story of everything the night before [….]*, it was almost like she new when her time was going to be over *[Note from Karen — I’ve hidden a few top secret comments in case someone looking here hasn’t read the book! 😊  ]

Poppy – Age 10 – May 2021

To Karen,
I really enjoyed the book I definitely rate is 5/5! I loved the time travelling bit (I don’t think I spoiled the book because it’s in the blurb!) I hope everybody gets a chance to read this great book! I hope you get to reply as I would really like to talk to an author! Oooh! And I loved that Charlie Green [….] A-maz-ing!

Bessi – April 2021

I purchased from Amazon based on reviews. I knew my son (8) would enjoy going on an adventure with Tom and Stella. Little did I know, I would become so emotionally invested. Thank you, Ms. Inglis for writing such a beautiful story.

Rodney – April 2021

Hi Karen,

I love The Secret Lake. I give it a 5 out of 5 stars. I like it when Stella and Tom figure out that [….]* Are you going to make another book similar to this one? There were so many twists that I did not expect.

[*Note from Karen — I’ve hidden top secret info from here! 😊  ]

Ruth Bambauer – April 2021

Dear Karen,
This book was so AMAZING! This made want to go back in time and see my ancestors and what it was like back then! I got to read this everyday during one of of my classes! This made the day so much better and go so much faster! My favorite parts of the book were when Tom and Stella figured out that […]*. Also when they followed Harry to the hole and went down. This book was so good because every time I got done reading for that day I had another prediction about what was happening. You should write a Secret Lake 2.0!!You are such a good author! I would love to meet you some time! Thank you for writing such a good book! *
Ruth Bambauer

[*Note from Karen — Top secret info is hidden just in case you’ve not read the book! 😊  ] 

Sara – April 2021

I really love this book! It is very funny. I love the twists at the end! I would give it 5 stars. I definently recommend reading this book. :)

Ellianna – April 2021

I give it 5 stars it was grate. i new that…. [Note from Karen – top secret information is hidden here from Ellianna’s review, just in case anyone reading hasn’t finished the book!…I have explained in my reply to Ellianna that I have to do this sometimes!😊.]

Molly – Age 11 – April 2021

I have read this novel multiple times and each time I read it it makes me want to laugh, cry and smile all at once. Packed with shocking and stunning scenes, I would recommend this to any budding writer or reader to show what true writing is. This book is 100% one of my favourites and I would love Karen to write some more books, perhaps one for slightly older children? This novel is one for children who aren’t avid readers as it inspired me to read more, and now (unsurprisingly) I love reading as much as my dog! Thank you for reading my review!

Hailey – Age 13 – April 2021

Hi! I’m Hailey and I am 13 years old. I love to write books and The Secret Lake was a great read! I did not expect the twists at the end! Please write more books about Stella and Tom, maybe they get transported to a different timeline in each book. Please keep writing, as I would love to keep reading.

Jakob – April 2021

Hi, Im jakob this book was Stunning I will 100% read this again Karen ill also buy more of your books!

AA – age 8 – April 2021

Dear Karen Inglis,
Ever addictive chapter made me want to read for hours of this suspenseful story, full of friendship, and adventure. I suggest many people should purchase this fabulous book.
– AA, age 8

Janae – March 2021

Dear Karen Inglis, I think your book The Secret Lake is an amazing book. It is very interesting, and I love how you did the cover of the book. When I saw it, I knew it was going to be very interesting. I love reading, and reading always made my day better! Thank you for making this book, and stay safe! By Janae.

Shritika – Age 9 – March 2021

hi, It is Shritika. I can’t believe that I am talking to an author! I really liked this book. I love time traveling. One day, my mom bought me this book, and I thought it would be bad. Turns out, I loved it, and it was amazing! (Fantabulous!!!!!) You must absolutely get this book if you like time traveling!!!! Out of 10, I would give this book 10 stars! ‘Twas nice talking to you! Bye!

Ellie – Age 10 – and Hannah – Age 8 – March 2021

Thank you Karen Inglis for writing The Secret Lake. We really enjoyed it! Please write more adventures of Stella and Tom!

Andy – March 2021

Good book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Harper – Age 8 – February 2021

Dear Karen,
My grandmother gave me this book for Christmas. I loved this book! It felt like I was actually there when I read it. it was a great mystery. This is the longest book I have ever read. I hope to read more of your books.
Harper Hamm, age 8

Janiel – February 2021

It was ghood but one thing I don’t like is Charlie Green being rude to Tom

Emily – Age 7 – February 2021

Hi Karen my name is emily from liverpool in England and I am 7 years old. This was my first chapter book and I read it with my dad. I thought it was a 5 star book and loved it so much I was wondering if you was thinking about doing the secret lake 2! We would love it if you could. Thank you for a great book.

Anonymous – February 2021

i really like the book and like the part when stella and tom find out […..] Note from Karen — I’ve had to hide this bit I’m afraid just in case someone reading here hasn’t read to the end of the book! I hope you understand 😊

Anees – February 2021

I enjoyed the mystery of the book. The main characters are Tom, Stella, Jack and Emma.The mystery of Jack’s son was interesting. I liked the part when Tom and Stella rescue Jack.

Great story. I would recommend for you to check this book out because it has a lot of surprises.

Kenneth – whose 3rd grade daughter read The Secret Lake to him…  February 2021❤️  😊

I bought this book for my 3rd grade daughter’s book report. I must say what an amazing book this was. I had her read it out loud so I would know that she was following along and understanding what was going on. We were both hooked! What an amazing story and the twists, outstanding. I couldn’t believe I was so intrigued! My daughter wanted to say thank you for writing such an amazing book! Best wishes!

Dominic – Age 9 – February 2021

My name is Dominic and this book is so awesome!
It has so much action and surprises. Also, my favourite part was when Tom and Stella save Jack.
I would recommend you to check this book if you haven’t.
It is a very cool book with full of surprises.

Alex – Age 8 – February 2021

I really enjoy this book and give it a 10/10 specially in chapter 7 I was really surprised. My teacher introduced me too this book and now I really want to read more but there isn’t a other one.

Ismail – February 2021

This book was really fun and I wish it could go on TV and my favorite part was they can travel in time. I wish I could read it again but I don’t have the book and I am sad. My favorite character was Stella.

Madison – Age 8 – February 2021

I really enjoyed this book because it has so much action. Action books are my favourite kind of books, so for me it was PERFECT! My favourite part was when they found out Charlie Green’s secret and my favourite character was Emma because she is adventurous and pretty. I hope that the readers enjoy this book as much as I did!📒

Alexus – Age 10 – February 2021

I thought this was fabulous and more then fabulous it’s wonderful I just love it I can not say how much I love it. Alexus said age 10

David – February 2021

Hi my name is David, I read your book, and I find it is one of my favorite books. I love the suspense throughout the book, and all the excitement I had reading it. I love all the characters, they all tell a background story about them. I also noticed that Stella and Tony’s friendship, I can tell hey have a really strong connection. I have a friendship like them, his name is Kenujan and we’ve been friends for 6 years. I recommend this book to everyone. Thank you

Nikko – Age 9 – February 2021

Dear Karen,

Hi Karen Inglis I am Nikko age 9 this book was really good because there were really cool twist I have one question Why did you come up with this book ??? Who ever does not like this book is weird because this book is one of my favorites Stay safe Karen and hope you reply!!!! (Make more books because these are the best books)!!!!

Sincerely, Nikko

Cindy Romero – retired teacher – February 2021

I am a retired teacher in California and have been reading this book to my just turned 12 year old grandson every night before bed via Facetime. We loved the book! I would finish a chapter and have him beg me to continue so we could see what was going to happen. Very intriguing story about time travel, great characters and he had already guessed the ending mid-way through the book. He couldn’t figure out who the gardener was though…lol! Thank you for writing such an entertaining book that we both enjoyed. Waiting for another please!

Tyler – January 2021

I LOVE this book and how Jack and Stella go back in time through the tunnel. I also liked the book because I couldn’t put it down why I couldn’t put it down was how much detail there was. I adore this book because of all the characters usually I don’t like books that have two or three characters because there isn’t as much action as there is with a lot of characters. Thank you sooooooooooooo much for this book! I loved this book and I think you will too!

Hayden – Age 8 – January 2021

Wow I can’t believe how good this book is my name is Hayden and I am 8 and I just love this book if I was rateing it from 1 the worst and 10 the best I would rate it a 10. It’s just so awesome 👏 I love the book so much my favorite part is when Stella and Tom find the time tunnel and find out where Harry is going I toatally recommend this book if you want to get one I think you should get this book. I had no books to read only one I read I have so many books but they all are ones I don’t want to read AGEIN. So I love this book and thank you for making it!!!😀

Lisa – January 2021

I bought this book for my 10 year old daughter during the lockdown. I read the first chapter with her ,then Got so hooked I took the book and read it over 3 nights… Took me back to all the books I used to read as a child. Loved it x

Sophia – Age 9 – January 2021

I wasn’t really interested at first, but as I got deeper into the book, I liked it so much that I didn’t want to stop reading. My favorite character was Harry, because he was a dog and I pictured him as puppy. I hope you write another book like this.

Madie – January 2021

I really love this book, at first I thought this would be a bit young for me, considering the size but don’t judge because I read it all in one night! I literally couldn’t put it down! I want to see a part two! When They meet Emma again in the future!

Chloe – January 2021

I absolutely love this book!! you should get it. it is so fun to read when i saw the title and picture i thought i wasn’t gonna like this book but seriously don’t judge a book by it’s cover! i am in love with this book im glad santa got me this book! you should get this for real it addicting to read! thank you for making this book! its amazing i have so much to say!! but thanks its sooooooooooooooooooo good!!!!!!

Vidhathri – Age 9 – January 2021

Dear Karen,
A very Happy New Year !!
I am 9 years old and my mother is helping me write.As I live in Germany I don’t have access to many English books here at the library , my Mom saw very good review about this book and ordered it from Amazon and she is very Happy about her decision .
I just loved your book so much , each night we would read this as my bedtime story , infact when we reached chapter 14 , I could not resist to finish it the same day , the end was very interesting , I enjoyed reading it with my mother.
Some how jack’s accent was a bit difficult to follow .
Have you written or plan to write more books like Secret lake , if not I would request you to please make Secret lake part 2 , it will be fun to meet Tom , Stella and Emma once again.
Best Wishes and Regards,

Domenica – January 2021

I really like this book! It is mysterious at the end of the book when they find out *[…….] secret. It is very interesting when they time travel. This book was very good so I read it in 3 or 4 days! My favorite character is Emma Gladstone because she is very kind and likes to go on adventures.

[…Karen’s note: I’ve masked a couple of clues here, just in case anyone coming to this page has not read the book yet. However, I’ve left them in at the bottom of the page where I reply to the reviews!]

Umama – Age 11 – January 2021

Hi Karen, I hope you are doing good. I loved “The Secret Lake”, it was so mystery filled. So enjoyable to read. My Aunt gave the book to me on my Birthday (December 22nd 2020). I had turned 11 at that time so now I’m 11! I’ve read a few more kid’s reviews and I totally agree that you should make a “The Secret Lake 2”! Also when I was reading the book Jack’s part was the most hard to read because he speaks like I might say in an accent:) Mrs.Moon was my favorite character. Again I want to say great job on the book and keep up the hard work.

Madyson – Age 10 – January 2021

Hi my parents are helping me write this and I really like this book! My mom gave it to me for Christmas and I reread it because I like the book a lot. Also Happy New Year!

Bradley – Age 7 1/2 – January 2021

hello my name is Bradley. I am 7 1/2 years old. my grandad is helping me write this. I liked The Secret Lake because it makes me want to keep turning the pages and I was sorry when we got to the end.

Binyamin – Age 13 – January 2021

Oh my god what a short book written by a master teller it was so good that it had suspense that had a flow from start to finish so was the short chapters. Way too good. So suspenseful I read it in one sitting and that should win a book of the year for suspense. Please write a sequel (reason being because you are a good writer) and add me to your mailing list.

Theo – Age 7 – December 2020

I love this book because it was really mysterious .
Please could you write a secret lake 2 ?
My favorite character is Harry beacause when he plays it sounds a lot of fun.
Theo aged 7

Oliver – Age 9 – December  2020

Dear Karen,
I am leaving a review for your book, The Secret Lake because I want to tell you how good it is, I am amazed at how your book hooked me in and the cliff hangers at the end of most chapters, which kept me exited and sad that the chapter had ended. You are an amazing author and how you keep your books exiting and nerve racking is incredible! of your book. I liked reading this book with my mum and it was so amazing . Thank you for sharing this book with everyone. I would love to have a sequel to describe what Tom and Stella do in the future, because Mrs Moon says that she sees Tom and Stella in the future. So it sounds like their are more adventures to be had. My favourite character is Tom because I love how cheeky he is and always getting in trouble! I also loved how Harry remained with Mrs Moon that was a lovely part of the story too,
Please write another book about these characters because I would really like to read it!

From Oliver
Aged 9

Eamon – December 2020

I think that this book was great. There was so much description about Tom’s feelings, about Charlie Green and the inside of Emma’s house. My favorite character was Jack because he is so adventurous, like me, .and I loved all of the time travel. It was a very good book, and I will recommend it. Thank you so much for writing it.

Lulu – Age 12 – December 2020

This was a very good book my name is lulu with the age of 12 this is the best book i have ever read in my life! I love how the good parts give SO MUCH exitment :)

Ashaaz – Age 9 – November 2020

I LOVED this book! The sad part was when, Charlie Green ran off(not exactly!) and Mrs. Moon/ Mrs.Gladstone [….] *

My favourite characters were Tom and Jack

*[Note from Karen: I have edited the very end part of Ashaaz’s comment in the first paragraph above, just in case someone reads this page before reading the book 😉 ]

Jovie – Age 12 – November 2020

Hi- my name is Jovie and I’m 12 years old, and I feel very out of place here because it seems like everyone leaving a review is from the UK, which I am not, but whatever, haha-

I read The Secret Lake for school. It wasn’t required, but I had to choose a book to write a report on, and since I had already read every book in my house like three times, I read this one, which was my brother’s. I know it’s recommended for ages 8-11, so it felt a little young for me, although I still really enjoyed it, especially the twists at the end. I must add, it was also fun to read a book in UK English and figuring out what each word meant that’s not commonly used in the USA. Anyway, I saw that you are still active and replying to reviews on here, so I thought I’d post one:) I love reading and writing and thought this book was great!

Charlotte – Age 6 – November 2020

I loved this book. It was so exciting and I liked the twist at the end. My favourite character is Emma. I hope there is a part 2 book as I would love to see what happens next!

Nora – Age 6 – November 2020

I really enjoyed this book, I can’t wait to read it again. I particularly enjoyed it as it was very mysterious in parts and a little scary.
My favourite bit was when they first discovered the boat and also when we finally realised [who…] I kind of guessed. (Karen’s note: I’ve had to edit here so as not to give away a clue!)
Overall a great read….8.5/10

Scarlett – November 2020

This book was so good that I think it should be made into a movie!

Benjamin – Age 9 – October 2020

After moving to London, Tom started to dig in the communal garden and found a boat. It was strange because there was no lake or river in the garden.

Tom and his sister Stella then have an amazing adventure, solve a mystery and make new friends.

I enjoyed the mystery, the fantasy and the short chapters.

Benjamin Beale (Age 9)

Etta S – October 2020

I had only read the first few chapters of The Secret Lake when I lost it. I had forgotten about when during recess one of my best friends said I should read it. She loaned it to me and i started reading it during morning work. I had read the first three chapters online, so I was super excited to read more of it. I could not stop reading it, as soon as I got home I read for a loooooooooog time. Then once I was in bed I only had a few more chapters left and I finished it. I love every part of it and I love the part where Stella and Tom meet with Mrs.Moon. I definitely recommend this book.

Manjeet – Age 9 – October 2020

Once you turn a page you can’t stop turning pages!

Manjeet Age-9

Cecelia – October 2020

Adeline – October 2020

Every day at school I’d be waiting with anticipation to get home so I could open The Secret Lake and get sucked into Tom and Stella’s world. They are a brother and sister who have just moved back from Hong Kong, and when they realise there’s a time tunnel in the gardens, that’s where I really couldn’t put it down. On their second trip down the tunnel, I was almost caught sitting in awkward positions, my eyes moving frantically across the pages, wondering, How were they going to save Jack?

The things I loved most about The Secret Lake was its hope, because of Mrs. Moon’s hint, and friendship, because of Emma accepting Stella’s token of friendship and keeping it safe. I also loved it because time travel is so interesting to me because it’s so complicated.

Everyone should read The Secret Lake!

Sofi – Age 10 – October 2020

A lost dog goes missing. Stella and Tom try to find him, but instead go back in time, a hundred years in the past. What they find is a secret lake with many mysteries and adventures. Stella and Tom make new friends and enemies, and they will never forget their adventure with a lost dog and a secret tunnel. At one point, they get stuck in the past. Can they get out? Or is there some other trouble lurking towards them and their friends? If so what can they do to help? And could someone disappear out of the blue?

This book is fantastic, has great mysteries, and is full of thrill and excitement.
Age 10. -Sofi

Chloe – Age 10 – October 2020

Stella and Tom are two kids who have moved from Hong Kong and into “The Garden.” Stella, missing a friend from home, and Tom, ready for adventure, find that they don’t live in your normal everyday place. A dog takes them into a time travel adventure where they make friends, and enemies. When a mystery comes to hand, can they solve it? Or get caught trying? When the truth doesn’t make sense, what does? All we know is magic is real.

This book is full of mystery, adventure, and even some comedy. It is my type of book!
age 10 Chloe

Janelle – Age 9 –  September 2020

I totally recommend reading this book! I know that some of you out there might think that this book is boring and think ” this is so boring, I don’t want to read this, do I have to?” I was like that too but, after I started reading a few chapters, I just could not put it down! I got so absorbed in my book that when my mom called ” Janelle put that book down and come eat some dinner. “… Ten minutes later… mom, ” Janelle put that book down and come eat or there will be consequences! ” me, “OK mom, just let me get to the next chapter, I’m almost there! ” I’m telling you I could not put The Secret Lake down, and I think that you will enjoy it as much or even more than I did!!! I think that Karen Inglis did a really great job on The Secret Lake and that you will love it. Good job Karen!!!!
– Janelle age 9 Casper, WY

Kat – September 2020

Hi, this is my name that I wish I had, not my real name.
So anyways, I love the Secret Lake. I kind of wish it were longer, though, I’d finished it in two days since I read faster than the average kid.
Stella’s probably my favorite character, with her personality and all, but Jack is a close one too.
I love how it’s a mystery book also intertwined with a time travel theme. It’s one of those hybrid-genre books that really catch your eye.
I hope the author makes a sequel!

Lucas – Age 8 – September 2020

Dear Karen,

I liked your book because it’s about a secret tunnel. I loved reading about how they discovered it and about how Harry could come back to Emma through the time tunnel by the magic moles. Your writing is impressive! Thank you for writing this excellent book. I would like to read any other adventure books you have written.


Anonymous – September 2020

Hi i can not tel you my age but i love your book it is very good hope you well and hope you doing good :D

Brittany – and daughter age 6 – September 2020

What an enchanting story. I read this with my 6 year old daughter. She understood it well with some explaining here and there. I love all things old times. This book was a beautiful combination of enchantment and adventure with some old fashioned warmth. Such a lovely story. We couldn’t put the book down. Especially towards the end we had to keep reading and ended up finishing the last 5 chapters in one sitting to find out the end. The book leaves it open for a follow up story in my opinion, which I would adore to read. So cute! Highly recommend this fun enchanting adventure and mystery. We are also in the USA.

Hayley – September 2020

The Secret Lake was very very good, I enjoyed every part of it. I think you should make more of these kinds of books.

Ava – Age 6 – September 2020

I loved this book, it is very mysterious. My mom read it to me at night time and it really calms me down. My favorite part was when Tom and Stella would go down the tunnel to the other time. This is one of my favorite books in world.
If you like mysterious books, then read this!

Francesca – August 2020

Hi Karen

My name it Francesca and I loved the Secret Lame . I loved the book because there was mystery and adventure. The Secret Lake is one of my favorite books. I’m had so much fun reading the book. You should make a Secret Lake 2 then it would have more adventure and fun in it

Bye hope you make more book in the future

Francesca :) 👍

Yoonjae – Age 8 – August 2020

Hi Karen, I am Yoonjae. I loved your book. I like the way I do not have to wait all the way to the middle to get an interesting part throughout the whole story, which is full of entertainment. The book is a page turner, you choose a lot of good words to make the reader keep reading. I also like that your book has a very good topic, theme, and very mysterious mysteries. The last thing that I like about your book is Jack, Charlie Green, and Crawly speak with lisps, which sounds really funny. I would like to read another book about the secret lake. Thank you for writing this story.

Yuju – August 2020

I think this book is great because it has a very interesting story. My favorite part of this book is when Stella and Tom meets Sophie and Emma. I really liked when they met other new characters. Also if I were a author, Instead of Secret Lake I would change it to secret tunnels. I would change it because I want it to be more magical. Otherwise I love this book:).

Aiden – August 2020

I liked this book. I love adventure and exploring part of the book. I want to recommend this book to my friends because the book is fun. This book would come into my top ten favorite books.👍👍👍

Arjun – Age 10 – August 2020

The Secret Lake is an good book.I read to my sister everyday.

Leo – August 2020

The secret lake is a excellent book ( thank you karen Inglis) , my favourite character is tom because he is very relatable and loves diging like me. The book is such a page turner I read it all in one go (something I rarely do). I Think you sould make secret lake number 2 .😀

Visaly Flora – Age 6 – August 2020

i lovd the seecrut laik
i had it red to me by my mum becos i hav sevear dislexeeya
from visaly aje 6

Alice – age 8 – August 2020

I loved ‘The secret lake’. I have been reading it by myself and my favourite characters are Stella and Emma. I would love it is you did a follow on of that book! 📙 I would give this 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 stars!

age 8

Lucy – July 2020

I loved the secret lake because it was entrancing, intriguing and magical! On top of that, the characters were so realistic I felt as though I was there and the author was so inspiring that I wrote my own story and now I want to become an author too! This book has everything: time travelling, educational information aboutf the past and present day, an AMAZING storyline and even a DOG!
I hope anyone who reads this review makes the RIGHT decision and buys ‘The Secret Lake!’

Megan – July 2020

I thought the book was great. It was so good I could not put The Secret Lake down! I like the characters Tom, Stella, Jack, Lucy and Emma. I could really picture every scene in the story because you described the places so well. There is so much action. After mummy or daddy has read to me I want to read more and more and more. I would like to hear when Tom and Stella go home.

Max (Age 7) July 2020

I am 7 years old and me and my mummy read this book together. It was epic! I loved that they went through the time tunnel and the mystery got solved bit by bit as the story goes on, (I won’t spoil it!). I loved all the exciting parts and I really hope there is another secret lake part 2 so we can go into the future tunnel and find out what’s going on. Thank you for writing such a fun book I will tell my class all about it.

Joyanti (Age 6) July 2020

Dear Karen,
My name is Joyanti and I’m 6 years old. Your book was simply lovely. My favourite characters were Lucy, Stella, Tom, Jack and Emma. My favourite part was when Stella and Tom discover that they were in the past and my favourite part was when Stella said,’Tom, look, I do think that is our house, but, well not at the moment. Look, don’t ask me how, but that tunnel we found seems to have taken us back to our garden in past time. That’s why everyone is wearing those funny clothes!’ I liked it because Stella and Tom had finally discovered that they were in the past time.

Aaheli – July 2020

I loved the story! My favourite character was Lucy

Eve – July 2020

Dear Karen inglis

My name Eve and I loved this book My favorite part was when we found out who….

(Karen’s note: I’ve hidden the last bit of Eve’s comment here, just in case someone is reading this who hasn’t yet finished the book 😊…Thank you, Eve, anyway! Your full comment is in your post down below!)

Aurelio (Age 10) July 2020

I liked so much the story that i want to read more. Are you writing a part two with some more travelling to the future? I would love to read about Jack, Emma and Lucy travelling to the future.

Luke Melton (Age 13) June 2020

This book was really good, I’m 13 and I enjoyed it, but I feel like 8 year olds would like it!! It was really good, and probably one of the best books I’ve read in a long time!!! I know you probably aren’t reading this, but if you are, Mrs. Karen Inglis thank you so much for writing this book!

Amelia (Age 10) June 2020

Hi Karen,
I absolutely loved The Secret Lake, it was one of the best books I have ever read. It was a page turner from beginning to end and I just couldn’t believe the ending, what a brilliant author you are.
Do you plan to write any more books on the adventures of Stella and Tom? I would be so interested to read them.
Thank you for publishing this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Kind regards,
Amelia, age 10

Katy (Age 10) June 2020

Thank you for writing this book! I really enjoyed it and liked all the friendship in it. My favourite character was Tom, Stella and Emma. It was really clever how you put time travel I in there! The moles also had a big part in there to let people (and Harry) time travel. I liked it when they were all hiding up the chimney. :D thank you! x Kate age 10

Danny Murray (Age 5) June 2020

I really loved this book! I really like the part at the end of the book with Charlie Green. I won’t give it away for the other kids, but it was a wonderful book! Thank you. Danny Murray, age 5

Jacob (Age 10) June 2020

Hi, Karen.
I really enjoyed reading your book!
I thought it was intriguing and I really liked how real yet unreal it was.
It was truly an amazing book!
Sometimes I had to read something twice because you need to think about what’s happening and it’s fun to guess what is going to happen.
I’m glad my school chose this book to read.
Yours Truly,
Jacob age 10


William Taylor – June 2020

I think it’s the best story i have ever read. I hope there will be a other one because it was awesome. :)

FruitRuby – June 2020

I LOVE the book so many interesting twists and turns. Sometimes I didn’t understand what’s going on but no hate because I honestly think that the book is AMAZING 😍💕

Alfie – June 2020

I thought the book was really good especially how the secret moles were appearing everywhere and Tom sore them before they found the tunnel which was very lucky. And how Mrs Moon [….] * which was really cool and how Charlie Green […]* I really enjoyed reading it and I think it might be one of my favourite books I have ever read

Thank you

Thomas Cunningham (Age 9) June 2020

To Karen Inglis
I really enjoyed this amazing book because it was page turning and exciting.

Zoe (Age 9) June 2020

Hi, I absolutely loved this book ⭐️✨!! and the reason why I liked this book was because it is very page turning and you want to know what happens next

Anonymous – June 2020

I liked your book because I thought it had a good element of mystery and was interesting.

Karolina – June 2020
Dear Karen,
I love the book!I was soooo intresrested that I started reading it and I stayed up all night reeading it!I love it and I will thank my mum soo much and I ,will ask her if she could buy me more of your books.
love karolina

Marijane, (Age 85 😊) June 2020

Dear Karen Inglis, a friend gave me your book and said that I had to read it. So right. I am Emma! I had the most wonderful dog in the world, and I began crying soon after page 100 (no spoiler, but it is NOT a sad book). I’m not sure what those deep sobbing tears meant, but you will know, since I AM EMMA!
I loved your book. Thank you first to my insistent friend, and then to you for writing it.
Best wishes, Marijane:

Ted (Age 8) June 2020

Everything about the book was good. What I liked the most was how Tom and Stella were able to escape from Crawley. I am 8 years old. I give it 4.99 stars.

Amy Allen (June 2020)

The secret lake is a great book and you’ll feel like your on the adventure with them!
Loved it😍😍

Oliver (age 7) June 2020

It is a great book! You should make a second :) thank you for writing this book I love reading! 👏 I’ve always wished that I could time travel.


Ella (June 2020)

Hi I am Ella I loved your book so much I read it twice I loved how it was so mysterious at some points and not at others.My favourite character is definitely Stella because she is so adventurous but I also quite like Emma because she’s really kind.

Blair (age 8) June 2020

dear, Karen Inglis, i love this book so much this book got me really attached and it lured me in, this book was really well done and i love it, but i am only on the 7th chapter and it is AMAZING!!! and i am going to review this book again after i finish reading it. worm regards, your friend, Blair Herman (age 8)

one more thing. are you writing another book right now ??? from blair herman

Olivia (age 10) June 2020

This book was amazing! I love the way you describe things. This book definitely made my top 5! My favorite character is probably Emma, she is just so kind and caring, I don’t know who else I would pick. All I can say is that you are an amazing author, and there is no denying that! Thank you for making this book Karen! 👍

Myra (May 2020)

Hi!!! My name is Myra. I really loved this book, it was so adventurous, and I couldn’t stop reading after the first few pages! You are a amazing author, and you should make a 2nd book of this, or make another book like this

Olivia Rose (May 2020)

Dear Karen, I loved the book the best book I have read and I have read loads of books, millions!
I really like the mystery, excitement and friendship. my favourite character is Tom because he likes going on adventures like me. My favourite part is when they find the tunnel and the ending. I like when they go to the tunnel and go into the past and come back into the present and meet friends, you must get this book.

Julia (age 9 ) May 2020

Your book was very intriguing. At the end I got very curious and then I understood. I would never think of a story like that. That story was AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!

Zahra (age 9) May 2020

Hi Karen my name is Zahra and I am 9 years old. I really enjoyed the secret lake as you don’t have to wait till the middle of the book for the interesting part. I think I have an idea for your next book. It is about 3 siblings called Bella, Lilly and Mark. They get send to live in an orphanage after their parents die. When Lilly goes to the basement to get some cleaning supplies she finds a secret door. She also notices that she needs a key to open it. She tells Bella and Mark and they all try to find the key without getting caught. They finally find the key and when they open the door they found a picture of their parents and they found out that they lived there before them. Hope you like my idea Karen!!!!

From Zahra

Noah (age 8 in 3 weeks!) May 2020

I really enjoyed this book and read it with my Mum. I liked how the characters were described at the beginning and you got to know Tom and Stella really well. Sometimes I felt sad for Stella because they had just moved back to London and she was missing her friend but the adventure they went on soon meant she forgot all about that! I thought Tom was very brave how he was always trying to help people that were in trouble. Once he set his mind to something he would do it. I also liked Harry the dog and I wanted to read more because he was very mysterious, the way he kept disappearing! I liked how everything linked together at the end and want to know if you will be writing a second book about the garden and the lake. An adventure where they go into the future this time would be so awesome!

Yeshe Amma – May 2020

I absolutely loved reading this book! Once I started, I couldn’t stop!

Emma K (on behalf of her daughter) May 2020

My daughter loved this book, this is what she had to say “This was one of the best books ever! I really liked it because it has a dog in it and because it is very secretive and fun.”

Katy R (Age 8) May 2020

My name is Katy and I am 8. I am a real bookworm and absolutely gobble books!! I am a bit fussy about books so lately, me and my mummy went on the internet as we didn’t have any more books for me. This was one of the first books that we found!! It also arrived first and I was very keen. I have finished it from 1 chapter on Sunday 3rd May to Monday 4th May morning. I thought it was really good. How did you come up with the idea for that book? Did you do something that inspired you to write this book? What other books do you recommend to me that are by you??? I don’t really like scary books and I have only just finished book number three of Harry Potter and everyone is saying don’t read it as it will be too scary for me. I have got an idea for your next book. It is about 4 children who like going to the park. Then they are discovered by their horrid aunt. They have to go and live there. Then they find a trapdoor in their room and escape!! I would say that book would be for 6-12 year olds. In the book, I like how the moles make the tunnel so that Stella and Tom could escape. Would you be able to do a series like that book but maybe have more children or they go up to the future??? Also in the book, is Sophie still alive or did she die??

Katy 🐦🐝

Julia (Age 9 ) April 2020

It’s one of the best books ever! You must get this book!

Nathaniel (Age 10) April 2020

I thought this book was amazing. My favorite character was Tom, because he is funny. I would recommend this book to anyone.

Annabelle (April 2020)

I LOVED this book it was a cliffhanger at the end of every chapter and was written so well I also loved having to decode Jacks words.And my favorite character is Emma because she seems so sweet and adventurous and that is so me.I would recommend this book to someone looking for a cliffhanger and an adventure book

Olivia Jennings (Age 9) April 2020

This book is one of my favorite books. I wish this was a series! The end of the book is the most shocking. My favorite character is Emma because she is thoughtful and when she hears something most people wouldn’t believe, she still goes along with it. I highly recommend this book because it is mystery, but it’s also adventure and suspense.

Elena (Age 10) April 2020

This book was one of the best books I have ever read! From all the cliffhangers to the intriguing surprises that lured me into the book it was all in all SPECTACULAR! How did you get the idea of the storyline Karen? Anyways, I hope that one day I would get to go into a time tunnel and find out that later I would become one of the best authors, just like you are.

xx love from Elena 💫 age 10

Jessica (Age 10) April 2020

This is one of the best books ever! I loved it! You are one of my favorite authors and everyone should read this book!

Evie (Age 8) April 2020

Oh my Gosh! This book is so good and it has got so many lovely details. It’s always left on a cliff hanger and it made me feel excited when I finished each chapter – I couldn’t wait to read the next and find out what happens. When I finished the book I felt like I wanted more. Stella was my favorite character because she was funny and I could imagine what she was like in real life. I pictured her a bit like my big sister. :-)

Anonymous (April 2020)

This is such an awesome book! It is definitely one of my top 3 books. I would love to hear the story of Stella and Tom meeting Mrs.Moon in the future. If you have already published a book telling this story let me know. I would LOVE to read it. If not, please consider my request. But if you decide not to do it, that is fine, I know that I’m just one out of millions of fans. Thank You!

TheTNTteam (March 2020)

Awesome book – every chapter was left on a cliff hanger

Eliza (March 2020)

I LOVE the book ! I want to hear more from the story my favorite part about the book is
that it has soooo much details! I want to read so much more ! It’s so good

Gaby (Age 10) March 2020

Dear Karen
I thought your book was so amazing and interesting! when it was time to go to bed I just simply couldn’t put your awesome book down. However my favourite part was when [* Note from Karen – I have hidden this top secret comment and one more so as not to give away the story to those have not yet read the book! 😊] But when mrs.moon said that harry [***] I thought she was going to say he turned into a ghost dog but she did not say that Im just crazy! Alright back to the beginning your book rocked don’t let anyone tell you any different obviously they won’t because your book is the best of the best!
From Gabby (age 10)

Elaine Phillipson (School Teacher, Kuwait) March 2020

Dear Karen,

I just finished reading The Secret Lake. I had selected it to use with my class out here in Kuwait. While there are some challenging words in the story, the children will love learning their meanings and expanding their own vocabularies.
The story is wonderful. I didn’t know what to expect when I began reading it, but I couldn’t put it down. As a teacher, I know that this story will get my class hooked from the beginning and we are going to be able to do some great activities based around it, culminating in writing their own stories in a similar style.
I would recommend your book to everyone, regardless of age or gender. It gets a full 5-star rating from me and I am looking forward to reading more of your work. ‘Walter Brown and the Magician’s Hat’ sounds fun and will be my next purchase.
Thank you, Karen, for writing a great story. Pl3ease keep writing!

Katerina Anderson – March 2020

Your book Was amazing! I really loved it.It is a ten out ten. It is was my favorite book in the world . I totally give you a good review. I especially loved when Tom and Stella were in the past. And when they met Emma and Jack. Love it so much my sister wants to read it.

Kitty Jay, (Age 8)  – March 2020

Dear Karen

My Book Review of The Secret Lake by Karen Ingles

This story is about a brother and sister who find a hole which has a ladder which leads on to a tree and into the past. They meet a boy called Jack who is suspected to be a kidnapper. They meet Emma and her sister Sophie, they are quite posh. They have lots of adventures. At the end they find out that {*****Note from Karen: I’ve hidden some top secret information here, just in case children who have not read the book are reading this review 🙂 With my apologies, Kitty Jay – I love your comments here and in the other places about the story!}. It is sad because on the night they find {*** More top secret information hidden here by Karen again!*}.

My favourite part was when they find out that {***} I wasn’t surprised because they gave clues during the story. I thought it was a bit like Tom’s Midnight Garden.
{More top secret info hidden here – Kitty Jay is great at guessing things and nearly being right!*****}

I really liked guessing what happens next and I really love doing that.

I would recommend it to people that like reading adventures and guessing what happens next.`

I would give it 5 stars but I think Charlie Green should have been more included.

Kitty Jay, age 8

Newmill Primary School, Scotland – February 2020

Dear Karen,

We are P123 from Newmill Primary School and we have just finished reading The Secret Lake and we loved it. After a conversation about mysteries and suspense stories our teacher chose your book as an example. We have been hooked into the story trying to predict what would happen next. The story held our attention throughout as it unravelled with lots of twists and turns. We really enjoyed getting to know the characters and have our own personal pictures in our mind of the different settings. We were glad that Harry was safe too!

We highly recommend this book. Our next step is to create our very own stories of going down a time tunnel.

Kind regards,
Mrs Watt and Primary 123

Reem (Age 6 1/2) January 2020

To Karen, I think the book The Secret Lake is really exciting. I read it before I went to bed every night. My favourite part is when they go down the time tunnel and see The Gladstone’s! I highly recommend this book to other children so they can discover the Secret Lake’s secrets,

Adam (Age 6 1/2) January 2020

Dear Karen, I thought The Secret Lake book was really exciting. My favourite character was Harry the dog. I think this one of the best books I’ve ever read. I would like to read some of your other books now.

Hannah (Age 6) January 2020

I love your book, The Secret Lake. My dad read it to me and made some of the words a bit easier to understand. I think you should write lots more books. I think it might be good if you add some pictures too. I hope that I can become an author like you when I grow up.

Clara (Age 9) January 2020

i loved your book!!!! must read this book!!!!- clara age 9

Harmony (Age 7) November 2019

To Karen
I really enjoyed The Secret Lake.I read it as my school reading book. My favourite bit was when they went down the time tunnel, it was very exciting .My favourite character was Stella because she was helpful and funny I would like to be like her.I made a model of her for my school reading challenge ,it is now displayed in my school on our love to read board.I had a lot of challenging words in it for me that I had to ask people the meaning, but this made it interesting.I would recommend this book to other children as the story was exciting.
Thanks for writing this book

Volodymyr V (and daughter) October 2019

I got the book to read for my daughter when she tries to fall alseep. Well, with this book I killed 2 birds with one stone: my daughter was going alseep very quickly and I read a wonderful story. I really enjoyed it.

Tassia (Age 10) October 2019

I am ten years old and my name is Tassia. I really enjoyed reading The Secret Lake and finding out that […….]* was in on the secret too! I loved how close Stella and Tom were and all of there adventures. Please write a second one!
*Note from Karen — I’ve hidden something here so as to keep the storyline top secret 😊

Julia (Age 10, Houston) September 2019

My mom just got me this book a few hours ago and already finished i always surprise my parents when it comes to reading super duper fast lol^^

Grandparent / Granddaughter (August 2019)

I bought this book on kindle to read with my granddaughter. I am already done as I don’t have her everyday but I thought it was absolutely wonderful. So full of adventures and twists and turns. A good book transports you to that time and this is one of them. Two thumbs way up!

Elsie (Age 7, nearly 8!) August 2019

The Secret Lake is one of my favourite books because the characters are like me and the story has lots of action in it. It is one of those books that I will probably read for a second time. I really enjoyed reading this book and I look forward to reading more books you write. Elsie (7 almost 8!)

June (On behalf of her three granddaughters😊) August 2019

I bought this book to take on my kindle to read to three granddaughters, aged 7 and 10 on holiday. Each day we read three chapters and it became quite an integral part of the week. The girls loved it and it was very special time for me to read it to them. They loved the adventure and the descriptions of the characters, especially Tom and thought it would make an excellent film with CGI for the trip down to the Lake, Thank you Karen for a wonderful story.

Totty (Age 10) July 2019


When me and my mum were looking for books to read i saw this book, at first i didn’t want to get it but mum got it anyway so i decided to read it.From that moment on i couldn’t put it down and it was all i could think about.Its a brilliant book and i would definitely recommend it.

Merken, June 2019

This book was one of the BEST books I have ever read !! My mum bought it for me as a present and the tittle sounded very interesting which made me want to read it and because of that I finished it in two days. I told two of my friends to read it and that it was a amazing book !!!

Molly (aged 8), Isle of Wight,  June 2019

I chose to read this book because the title sounded interesting and adventurous. My favourite part was when Stella and Tom found out that [ …….*] – that was really cool! I also really liked finding out that [……*] another amazing surprise. I could picture what everything and everyone looked like in my head really easily because of the fantastic descriptions. I would like to read this to my own children one day! Me and my mum enjoyed this book so much, thank you. Molly Stone, age 8, Isle Of Wight, UK.

[*note from Karen: .these parts of the review have been hidden as they are top secret until you read the book! :-) ]

Blake (aged 10) May 2019

This was a really good book. I had to do a book report on Sci-Fi and had a hard time getting into the first three books I attempted to read. I tried this book and enjoyed it. Having a dog in the story did help since I love dogs. I cannot wait to turn in my report and see how I did. I think other kids in my class will want to read this book after I talk about it. Blake, age 10

Sasha (aged 10) May 2019

Hi Karen!
I thought your book was incredible!!! On the first page it had already drawn me in. I just loved everything about it😁! I would DEFINITELY recommend this book!
Sasha age 10

Nieve (April 2019)

I found this book amazing I think it would be one of my favourite books and I loved how it was about a time tunnel. I really want you to write what happens next. Will you be writing a sequel? I recommend this for 8/12 year olds.

Leo (aged 8 & 3/4) February 2019

This book was brilliant, because I love adventure stories, they’re the best. I like the way in other stories they fly through space and fight dragons but in this one they time travelled through a mole hole. I recommend that everybody should have this book. I like the way the authour made Jack speak and Tom because he is adventurous and likes digging up mole holes but he gets told off by Charlie Green. They met someone called Jack, Emma and Sophie down the time tunnel. Leo aged 8,3/4

Carson (in Canada) November 2018

This book was great because there was time travel. I recommend this book to everybody. I live in Canada and I really liked Jack’s accent, or I think he does because some of the words were cut off and a flashlight was called a torch. The characters are really interesting because they would always find something or do something that was surprising. This book was really exciting and it’s fiction and those are my favourite types of books to read. I’m going to ask my dad to buy me Walter Brown and the Magician’s Hat and Henry Hayes and the Great Escape, next. Thank you Ms. Inglis for writing this book!
Sincerely, Carson

Johnny, aged 6 & 3/4 (September 2018)

I loved The Secret Lake, it’s the best book ever. I really liked the pictures and the writing pushed me up a level with my reading, I learnt some new words!

I liked all the characters because they were exciting, especially the dancing moles.

The book was so much fun my mummy had to pull the book away to stop me reading at night! I’d recommend The Secret Lake to children aged 6-12 years old who enjoy mystery, adventure and surprises!

Beatrice (March 2018)

I thought this book would be amazing the first time I heard about it! I don’t want to give away the story because i don’t want to spoil it so you will have to wait and see when you read the book. It is about two siblings called Stella and Tom and they have just moved in a apartment in London in Notting Hill.Until one day Stella and Tom have just realised that they have gone back one hundred years back in time!WHO WILL THEY MEET! WHERE ARE THEY ! Those a probable all the questioned you are asking .Well you will have to wait and find out for yourself.

Freya , Cheshire (Age 10 )

The secret lake is very thrilling and exciting book; it has an exciting plot and I like the way it is so mysterious until the end when everything becomes clear. I like the way it is written because even though there are no pictures the description is so good that you can picture every single thing.
I also think that the Secret Lake is a very intriguing book; I picked it up this morning and couldn’t stop reading until I had finished. I liked it because there were some funny moments and some dangerous points in the story. It also brought lots of questions into my head which were cleverly tied up at the end. I really enjoyed the part where Sophie’s and Emma’s dad thought that crawly was inside Stella’s phone, because it was quite funny. I think it is a great book which I would recommend to anyone between the ages of 7-12. I am going to tell my friends about how good it is!
Please may you write another book involving the same characters on a new adventure in the garden?

Phoebe, West Sussex (Age 10)

I thought that the Secret Lake was an amazing book. I don’t want to give away the story or anything, but I thought that the contrast between modern and olden times was very funny, especially when the iPhone kicked in! I liked the characters both old Mrs Moon and her ever disappearing dog Harry because of their mysterious secrets. The book is quite hair-raising at times, but that just draws you in, and that makes the book difficult to put down! My sister now can’t wait to read it too!

Honor M (nrly 9!) Twickenham

I am 8 (nearly 9!!) and I love reading but not too girly books! My favourite books are Harry Potter. I really loved ‘The Secret Lake’ because it was really cool. It was very imaginative and the characters were brilliant. I liked the way the character Jack spoke and his clothes were very well described as well as his dirty face! I loved the character Harry and the way he came back very wet and came through the bush but I don’t want to give away too much of the story! I really got excited reading this book and I didn’t want to stop reading. At the end there was a really big twist and it was so cool. I wish I could have adventures like in this story. I would like to read other books by this writer. I liked the cover because they look about my age :)

Siân W (age 10) Leamington

I think that “The secret lake” is a great book with a very imaginitive storyline! Firstly the first few sentances draw the reader right in and makes sure that he or she reads on to find out what happens next, secondly the characters are described really descriptivly therefore it makes it an even better story to read by yourself or to others aloud.

Becuase I enjoy history I found this book fasinating as it made history come alive in my mind. It has everything, humour, history, adventure and much, much more!I particularly enjoyed the humour in the book and my favourite part was when Jack was given a listen on Stella’s ipod, his exact words were ‘Jeepers! Ya got people in ere or what, how d’ya do that then?’The scenes in the book are magically realistic and you can imagine the picture in your head and can almost hear the voices in your mind. Although there are no pictures in the book you can see all the characters and the scene that they’re in perfectly in your imagination.

The storyline is two children called Stella and Tom move to England and in their back garden they find a hole on the ground in a bush and when they go down it they travel in time back to the Victorian era and meet Jack the victorian boy whose father used to once work in a rich family’s house that in our times is a block of flats that the two children live in. The house belongs to a girl and her sister, mum, dad and servants, when she finds out that the kids are from a different time she quickly befriends them and tries to help them find their way home, but her sister and family think that Jack is a thief and try to catch them. I love how the story ends on a cliffhanger and out of ten i’d give “The secret lake” by Karen Inglis 10!

Mathieu (age 9) Barnes

This book is about Tom and Stella going back in time through a tunnel and I really liked it because it is about friendship.

The main characters are Tom, Stella, Jack and Emma. The main events are when Stella and Tom go for the first time in the time tunnel and meet Jack, Emma and Sophie who lived in their house a long time ago. Emma and Sophie invite Tom and Stella to their house but then Mrs Gladstone comes along with Crawley and some policemen because someone has stolen their silver and Mrs Gladstone’s purse. Tom and Stella decide to go home. But….! [Author’s note: A little edit here…I’m afraid that you will need to read the story to find out what happens next!]

My favourite character is Charlie Green because I like gardens and Charlie tries to stop Tom digging up the molehills. The molehills are all over the garden and a big part of the story!

Sophie (age 7 ) Carshalton

I loved this so much I could’t put it down! It’s about two siblings who have come to London for the holidays and they’re staying with a gardener called Charlie. They really do get up to loads of mischief when they find a time tunnel and travel 100 years back in time and discover an important secret from the past!

Ellen B (age 10) Leamington

I think that ‘the secret lake’ is a gripping novel and that it is a educational and exiting read. I love the fact that it does not just include one or two good points but a whole selection of them- such as humor,adventure, mystery and a whole range more! I believe that it would be a great read aloud to a child or a parent.

My favourite character is Emma Gladstone because she is very understanding and polite with a helpful attitude and a hint of cheek. My favourite scene is when…. I found it very moving when…. [Author’s note: I’m afraid I’ve had to edit these and one other little bit out because they gave the story away, but they were lovely!]

In summary I think that ‘the secret lake’ is an amazing story where everybody is everybody. It really is a time-slip adventure! :)

Issy F (age 10) Leamington Spa

The Secret Lake is a book packed full of adventure, suspense, and fun. It ensures that it is completely impossible to put the book down before you have read it through thoroughly at least three times. It is almost like a giant hand reaches out and grips you all the way from the first couple of sentences right up to the last page.

Personally, my favourite part was when Stella and Tom find out about Mrs Moons’ secret. Everything seems so exciting, and it’s clever how it all slots into place at the end.
The book does not include pictures, but they are replaced by imaginative descriptions that give the reader a clear picture of what was going on. I could almost hear the voices in my mind…”If Charlie Green finds this mess we’ll be grounded indoors for a week! “…

An addition to this, I found it hilarious when Stella let Jack listen to her IPod, and Jack simply couldn’t work out how earth a little box could make all that noise on its own, and he merely assumed that there were little people trapped inside!
I highly recommend this book.

Elia M (age 7 nrly 8!)

The very first page made me want to read more and more. I’m 7 years old, and I read it with my Mum – we took it in turns. Sometimes we had to stop but I never wanted to, it really kept me excited all the way through. My favourite character is Jack, because he is scruffy and fun (a bit like me). I’m keen on history, so I liked that the children went back in time to another era. I’m going to give a copy to my best friend.

Declan S (age 8), USA

I loved The Secret Lake because there was a big garden and I like the outdoors and lakes. I think the kids in the book were very nice. I think I am just like Tom because I love to dig and get dirty and get out of trouble. Stella is a great big sister. I learned that torch means “flashlight” or flashlight means torch. It was a very exciting book with many things going on, lots of adventures and many surprises. The nasty people (aka the bad guy) were very mean and scary. Stella has an iPod, its awesome! I want an iPod. I was very happy to read this story. I’m going to buy one to share with my friends and tell them to read it. I am going to encourage my friends to read it because it is a great book and you are a great author Karen Inglis!

Lily G (Age 7)

i think the secret lake was very good, interesting and surprising. i really loved it!
lily g – age 7  Thanks, Lily!  I’ve replied below! Karen

Charlotte C (Age 11) London [Reviewer for Families SW Magazine :-) ]

When you pick up the Secret Lake,you follow Stella and Tom on an exciting adventure in their strange new house. Travel back in time with them and discover a seeming thief, some curious moles and a sinister butler. Meet iconic characters from the past, from kind inhabitants of the house to the mysterious ragamuffin you see rowing on the lake. Travel with Tom and Stella from the world of blaring iPhones to the much more unknown world of governesses and crocheting.

I found this book really enjoyable and literally un-put-down-able! You will be engulfed in this magical tale and as the plot thickens you’ll be with the characters every step of the way…I was enticed by the mystery and twist in the story. I also found Stella and Tom surprisingly familiar and easy to relate to. I recommend this book to any avid reader between ages 8 – 12 who loves a good adventure. 

See Charlotte’s review here   Thank you, Charlotte, for this lovely review! Have a great Christmas! Karen

Tara (age 11) (Tara left 3 comments when I was away so I’ve merged them! :-)

I am 11 years old. My birthday is November 2000. My name is Tara. My friend Lorna met you.
I love your book and I cannot wait for “Eeek: The Runaway Alien” to come out ! I hope to meet you one day! When you met my family’s friend Lorna she got your autograph in my copy of “The Secret Lake !
I am so glad you actually write back to people

I love the book so far Karen! My friend Lorna got your signature in the book! As I said before I absoloutly love everything in it … the descriptions … the characters (especially Stella)… EVERYTHING!
My friend Lorna was so lucky to meet you… I hope to meet you soon!
As I’m typing, my dear book is on my lap and every now and then I stop typing to admire it. It is so beautiful , Karen. I’m only 11 and if I was someone from a newspaper I’d put you on the front page!
Karen you aren’t like any other author , who has people to write for them , and I’m glad you aren’t!
I am really pleased that my friend Lorna inroduced me to you, you aren’t very well known but you truly will be!
Loved writing to you,
Tara xxxx :D

Rebecca (Age 9 ) Hereford

I loved the way the story unfolded. It was thrilling. I liked the bit about the dog – it was very exciting and adventurous. I felt like I was there and it was happening before my eyes. It was a fantastic twist at the end – very surprising – you would’t have thought it. Karen Inglis is my favourite author!

Dominika (Age 8) Hanwell

I love your books my best is The Secret Lake! Enjoy it! Dominika P.S.I AM 8 YEARS OLD

Abigail Stafford (London)

Thank you for the lovely book Karen! I absolutely loved reading it! I met you in waterstones and you signed the book for me. The way you wrote it was lovely. I really want to be an author one day! For anyone else who is interested in reading it, you should!!!!! How did you get the idea of the storyline Karen? It’s wonderful!
Love from Abigail xx

Savannah (Age 8)

It’s really good and I loved reading it.
Thankyou for your amazing book Karen.
How did you get such an amazing idea?
How did you think of the characters?

How to leave a review

I’d love to hear what you thought of The Secret Lake! You can leave a review by using the comments form at the bottom of the page below: it’s probably a good idea to type and save your review in a Word document first then copy and paste it into the form. Tips for posting:

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546 Responses to Reviews — scroll down to add yours!

  1. camille age:8 says:

    BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!!

  2. jacob age 7 says:

    It was amazing i liked every thing except when […..] Emma was my favorite character. I got a lot of emotion at the end oh and please make a movie because if there was one I would watch it. I also liked when Stella recorded and shown what crawly had said to Emma. and the magic moles YES I said magic moles because making time tunnels is magic. also I want a sequel where Emma is alive so that’s my comment .

    *Note from Karen — I’ve hidden a top secret bit of information here :)

    • kareninglis says:

      Dear Jacob

      Thank you so much for writing to tell me how much you enjoyed The Secret Lake and I’m so glad to hear that Emma was your favourite character. I certainly enjoyed writing about her and she came to me very naturally. I also agree that it was fun how modern day technology was used to help catch Crawly! I would also love to have the movie made and have been approached about this a few times — hopefully it will happen one day :) I think the moles would make it especially magical!

      Lots of children ask if I am writing a sequel and I can eventually say that I am working on one now, so watch this space :) If you ask an adult to sign up to my newsletter over on my author website you can keep up to date with how that is coming along.

      Thank you again for writing and I hope you find many more adventures to get lost in over the rest of the summer. (And apologies for my late reply — it’s been a very busy few weeks and I am now on a boat in Menorca finally catching up!)

      With very best wishes,

      Karen 😊 📚 ❤️

  3. Emma says:

    This is an awesome book! Emma age 8

    • kareninglis says:

      Hello, Emma

      I hope you are having a good week. Thank you for letting me know how much you enjoyed The Secret Lake! I’m so glad you thought it was awesome! 😊

      I do hope you enjoyed meeting your namesake, Emma! She is actually one of my favourite characters! (Do you think it would be fun to be like the Emma in the story, and receive a visit from the children living in your home in the future?)

      I hope you are enjoying the summer holidays, wherever you are, and that you find many more adventures to get lost in over the coming weeks and months. (You can ask an adult to sign up to my mailing list on my main website if you or they would like to keep up with my plans for more books. You’ll find a link at the top of the page.)

      Happy reading and thank you again so much for taking the time to write to me.

      Karen 😊 ❤️ 📚

  4. Andrew says:

    Hi Karen,

    This is Andrew from the WordPress support team! This book looks really cool and I might go through it with my 8 year-old daughter! Mainly this comment is for testing purposes though–I need to write enough real text to get it through the Spam Filters!

    Best Wishes!


  5. Penelope Diana Mary Woodward says:

    Hello, I loved The Secret Lake. It was mysterious and exciting! 👧🏼👦🏼🐶

    Penelope aged seven

    • kareninglis says:

      Hello, Penelope

      Thank you so much for letting me know how much you enjoyed The Secret Lake. 😊 We authors love hearing from our readers!

      I’m really glad to hear you enjoyed the mystery and excitement. It certainly was great fun dreaming it all up! That is the best thing about being a children’s author ~ you can make just about anything happen. And what is even more fun is when the young characters take over and start acting in ways (and discovering things) that you really hadn’t expected! Perhaps you could try writing your own adventure mystery one day?

      I hope you have a wonderful summer and find many more adventures to get lost in!

      With very best wishes and thank you again for writing.

      Karen 😊 ❤️ 📚

    • Camille age:8 says:


      • kareninglis says:

        Dear Camille

        Thank you so much for letting me know how much you enjoyed The Secret Lake, and I am so sorry for my late reply! It’s been a very busy few weeks.

        I agree that Chapter 10 is exciting when Tom and Stella decide to go back down to help Jack! It was such fun to write and it was during that chapter that Lucy appeared out of the blue (I had no idea that she would be there!).

        I hope you are having a relaxing summer and find many more adventures to get lost in over the coming weeks. And just to let you know, I am finally working on a sequel to the story :) If you ask an adult to sign up to my newsletter on I will keep everyone up to date on progress.

        With very best wishes,

        Karen 😊 📚 ❤️

  6. Alma (10 years old) says:


  7. Alma (10 years old) says:

    I loved this book! It was amazing! SO. MANY. TWISTS! Please make a series!

    • kareninglis says:

      Dear Alma

      Thank you very much for your kind words about The Secret Lake. I am so glad you enjoyed the twists and turns — they were certainly great fun to write. Also, some of them came as a surprise to me, as the characters sometimes did things I hadn’t planned or expected! For example, I had no idea that Lucy would turn up in the garden in the middle of night when Stella and Tom went back to rescue Jack! Her voice came from nowhere! Thank goodness she was there to help though :)

      Lots of children and teachers and parents ask if there will be a follow-on book. My answer is that I have various ideas tumbling around in my mind but will only put pen to paper once I am sure any next book will be as magical as the first. So it’s a case of ‘watch this space’ at the moment :) If you ask an adult to sign up to my newsletter on my main author website they and you will be able to keep up to date with what I am doing :)

      Thank you again so much for writing and I hope you find many more adventures to get lost in in the coming weeks and months.

      Karen 😊 ❤️ 📚

  8. Angela Age 10 says:

    To Karen, I have so many things to say I don’t even know where to start! I loved the Secret Lake it may now be one of my favorite books!I really adored the part where Crawley gets […] ,and when they found out that [….]* !Thank you for writing this book,I will advertise it to my friends.

    *Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a comment here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

    • kareninglis says:

      Hello, Angela

      Thank you very much for your kind words about The Secret Lake. I’m so glad you enjoyed it :) It was certainly great fun to write and much of the time the characters took over and did things I hadn’t planned for or expected. In many ways it was a bit like watching a film running in my head. That is the fun of being a children’s author!

      I hope it has inspired you to maybe think about planning and writing your own adventure one day? You will be surprised what happens once you get started!

      Just in case you’ve not read it, here is a link to an older blog page on my author website which talks about the inspiration for the story ​:) It is now in translation in eight languages and it’s wonderful to know that so many children around the world still love a mystery adventure! Over 250,000 young readers have now enjoyed it in the English language — of which you are one. Children have such great taste! 😊

      Thank you again for writing, and I hope you find many more adventures to get lost in in the coming weeks and months. Oh, and thank you for offering to recommend it to your friends. I do hope they enjoy it!

      With very best wishes,

      Karen 😊 ❤️ 📚

  9. Lova Edenskär says:

    I tought the book was really good. And I loved how mysterious the book was.

    • kareninglis says:

      Dear Lova

      Thank you very much for letting me know what you thought about The Secret Lake. We authors love getting feedback from our readers. And I’m really glad that you enjoyed the mystery — it was certainly fun to write! Sometimes I wasn’t sure what the characters would do next! There is something very magical about being a children’s author and as I was writing I kept thinking back to when I was a child, and what I would love to read, so tried to make the story fit that :)

      I hope you are having a nice spring/early summer and that you find many more adventures to get lost in in the coming weeks and months. Maybe you could even dream up one of your own to write?

      Thank you again for writing,

      With very best wishes,

      Karen 😊 ❤️ 📚

    • camille age:8 says:

      pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeee make a series

  10. Miss Gilbert says:

    Niamh – OLBE
    I liked it when we found out that Harry had been time travelling back to […]* I think that if there were a book two, I would probably have more of a focus on Sophie and her story because we don’t find out as much about her compared to Emma.
    5/5 – I would recommend the book.
    *Note from Karen ~ I’ve hidden a comment here in case anyone reading hasn’t yet finished the book. 😊

    • kareninglis says:

      Dear Niamh

      Thank you very much for taking the time to write and let me know what you thought of The Secret Lake. I’m glad you enjoyed hearing about Harry’s travels — they were certainly fun to write about! Of course when he appeared from out of that bush all dripping wet I just knew there had to be a lake hidden somewhere…

      I couldn’t agree more with you that we need to know more about Sophie in another story. I often wonder how she felt after what happened, and whether Emma ever tried to tell her the truth… I also wonder if she became kinder and less judgmental after seeing Emma expose Crawley. Lots of things to think about!

      I don’t know if your book club know, but the lake in the story is inspired by a beautiful pond close to where I live. It’s called Still Pond and is located in a magical woodland called Isabella Plantation in Richmond Park. At this time of year the Azaleas are all in bloom and the pond is stunning — here is a video I took of it in May a few years ago. This was used as the basis for the front cover. I went up there the other day and it was 3/4 in bloom. I am planning to go up again this weekend to see if all of the flowers are now out :)

      Thank you again for writing. I hope you are having a relaxing half term and find many more adventures to get lost in over the coming weeks and months!

      With very best wishes,

      Karen 😊 ❤️ 📚

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