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Anne of Green Gables Paperback – November 6, 2018
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"Aficionados of the auburn-tressed waif will find Anne of Green Gables lavishly illustrated."
Smithsonian Magazine --abc
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My first impression of Anne of Green Gables was that the writing is very old-fashioned. (It reminded me of the Laura Ingalls Wilder books.) First published in 1908, it seems quaint compared to contemporary middle grades and young adult stories.
Set on Prince Edward Island, Canada, it centers around a gawky orphan who is adopted by Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert, a middle-aged brother and sister who need a youngster to help them on their farm, Green Gables. They’d requested a boy, but their desire was miscommunicated, and a girl was sent instead. At first, Marilla intends to send Anne back; but Matthew lobbies to keep her, as he is captivated by her imaginative ramblings.
To Anne, Green Gables seems like a paradise. She loves all the trees and flowers and ponds she passes in the countryside, and the garden at her new home. But she immediately gets herself in trouble when she throws a tantrum in response to a rude comment made by the Cuthbert’s neighbor, Mrs. Lynde.
Marilla is determined that if Anne stays with them, she must be properly brought up. Marilla’s nature is practical; she teaches Anne household skills and discourages her flights of fancy.
Anne meets another girl in the neighborhood, Diana, and they immediately become best friends. And though Anne hasn’t had regular schooling, she becomes an excellent and enthusiastic student, despite the ineptitude of Mr. Phillips, the teacher. She is well-liked by all the other girls, but Gilbert, the most popular boy in the school, makes a crack about her red hair, winning Anne’s ardent contempt and rivalry.
Anne has one misadventure after another, such as accidentally getting Diana drunk, and incurring the wrath of Diana’s Great-Aunt Josephine by jumping onto the bed where the old woman was sleeping unbeknownst, and serving the new pastor and his wife a cake that had a wrong ingredient in it, and almost drowning in a sinking boat.
A new teacher, Ms. Stacy, comes to take Mr. Phillips’ place, and she offers an after-school class to her advanced students for extra study to prepare them for the entrance exam for teacher training. Anne is invited to participate.
This first book in the series takes Anne through ages 11 to 16. Through all of her hardships, Anne learns how to work hard toward her goals, and shy Matthew and stern Marilla learn to love her.
Anne of Green Gables is a delightful classic, and I look forward to reading the entire series.
Top international reviews
I font like the cover picture though.