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Rilla of Ingleside (Virago Modern Classics) Paperback – September 9, 2014
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About the Author
L. M. Montgomery was born in 1874 on Prince Edward Island, Canada, where she spent her childhood living with her grandparents in an old farmhouse. A prolific writer, she published many short stories, poems and novels, many of which were inspired by the years she spent on the beautiful Prince Edward Island. Anne of Green Gables and its sequels have always been amongst the most popular of children's classics. Montgomery died in Toronto in 1942 and was buried on her beloved island.
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Rilla is 14 when the book opens, and her mother is a little worried about Rilla's lack of ambition in life, noting from the first chapter that "She has no serious ideals at all - her sole aspiration seems to be to have a good time." There's no doubt that Rilla's a touch vain and perhaps a mite spoiled, but she is girl who goes through an incredible overhaul of character through these pages.
I've read a great many books and sampled the writing of many different authors through the years, but there is something spellbinding about Lucy Maud Montgomery's way of storytelling. You feel the characters. Their joys, sorrows, struggles, and triumphs become your own. Your imagination is stirred with the slightest turns of phrase. Montgomery is a true master. Her characters will live in the hearts of readers until the end of time.
The first real grown-up party Rilla is allowed to attend happens to be on August 4, 1914. The party is interrupted when the news breaks that England has declared war on Germany, and as a part of the British Empire at that time, Canadian lads would be called upon to go forth and fight. As Rilla watches her brothers and friends go war and becomes part of the war effort on the home front herself, the seriousness and sacrifice of wartime life affect Rilla deeply. She finds the strength to rise to the occasion, even in things she despises. It's the joy of seeing Rilla grow into a woman whose inner loveliness matches her outer beauty that makes me love her so. Rilla is a true heroine.
This book is also valuable for the insight it provides into World War I and the lives of the everyday people it impacted. As a history lover, this adds to my enjoyment of the novel. But it's Rilla herself who brings me back time and again, to laugh and cry and hope (and cry some more!) with her and all the Blythe gang through this incredibly journey.
Most recent customer reviews
The final book in the Anne of Green Gables series focuses on the lives of the Blythe children, most specifically Rilla Blythe, as the...Read more