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Friday, April 11, 2008

Anne of Avonlea

by L.M. Montgomery

When I finished reading Anne of Green Gables I had no intention of reading any further. I couldn't imagine the story could carry on with any of the freshness of the first book. Lucky for me, I met Raidergirl3 while Candleman and I were visiting Prince Edward Island and she gave me Anne of Avonlea and Anne of the Island.

I love these books. Can't believe I didn't read them when I was young, but I'm certainly glad, that at 57, I did read them.

In this installment we meet the delightful Philippa who is one of Anne's friends at college in Nova Scotia. Let me just share this one interchange between Philippa, Anne and Priscilla when the girls first meet. Philippa begins with, "Tell me, what do you think of my looks?" At this naive demand, made in a perfectly serious tone, Priscilla laughed again. But Anne said, impulsively squeezing Philippa's hand. "We thought this morning that you were the prettiest girl we saw at Redmond." Philippa's crooked mouth flashed into a bewitching, crooked smile over very white teeth. "I though that myself,: was her next astounding statement, "but I wanted some one else's opinion to bolster mine up. I can't decide even on my own appearance. Just as soon as I've decided that I'm pretty I begin to feel miserably that I'm not. Besides, I have a horrible old great-aunt who is always saying to me with a mournful sigh, "You were such a pretty baby. It's strange how children change when they grow up." Please tell me quite often that I am pretty, if you don't mind. I feel so much more comfortable when I can believe I'm pretty. And I'll be just as obliging to you if you want me to - I can be, with a clear conscience." "Thanks," laughed Anne, "but Priscilla and I are so firmly convinced of our own good looks that we don't need any assurance about them."

I laughed at this description Philippa gives of Mrs. Grant: "She is a sweet old thing; but she never says anything but good of anybody and so she is a very uninteresting conversationalist."

I hope I always remember this bit of wisdom from Aunt Jamesina: "Anybody is liable to rheumatism in her legs, Anne. It's only old people who should have rheumatism in their souls, though. Thank goodness, I never have. When you get rheumatism in your soul you might as well go and pick out your coffin."

I strongly encourage you read these books if you want to brighten your day.

10 comments:

farmwifetwo said...

You have quite a ways to go to finish the series. And then move on to her other stories.

The last in the "Anne's" is Rilla of Ingleside. It gives the "at home" Cdn perspective - with references to battles etc - of WWI.

Booklogged said...

Farmwifetwom, thanks for your comment. I look forward to reading each one in the series. That last one sound very interesting with the Canadian perspective of WWI.

raidergirl3 said...

The first three are wonderful, and feel like the ends are tied up, but there is so much more. As farmwifetwo mentions, it goes all the way to Rilla of Ingleside which is possibly my favorite in the series. And there are short story collections, Chronicles of Avonlea, where Anne appears sometimes.
I'm so glad you are liking these!

Andi said...

Glad you liked these. I haven't continued beyond Anne of Green Gables, so I'm tickled to know the others live up.

shereadsbooks said...

Anne of Windy Poplars is my favourite, and the next in the series. When you read it, be sure to count the marriage proposals therein!

Framed said...

Oh, I'd forgotten about the marriage proposals. Someday I need to read the whole series again. I think I could go on a Lucy Maud Montgomery fest. Her books make me feel so good. I have two un-Anne books by her still waiting to be read. Are you feeling better?

Carl V. said...

Oh, you definitely need to keep reading. These books are wonderful. Rainbow Valley, one of the later ones, is all about Anne's children interacting with these other children and it is fun and beautiful at the same time. I'm glad you enjoyed these and hope you read the rest of the series.

Paula said...

The entire series is so fun and charming. To echo everybody else, keep reading...

jenclair said...

Anne of Windy Poplars is my favorite, too!

leila said...

Anne of the Island is my favorite. I enjoyed them all, but it's the first four that I re-read again and again.

I've also been meaning to read The Blue Castle for ever and ever.