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Customer Review

on July 11, 2007
Apparently, L.M. Montgomery did not want this collection of short stories to be published. Her publisher compiled a collection of stories that she rejected from inclusion into the Chronicles of Avonlea, and published this. (She sued them for this.)

I think that it's interesting to read this collection in light of that. Some of the stories are the gentle, sweet ones we've come to expect from the author, while others are glaringly not. The last story has already been mentioned as being hopelessly racist and out of date. However I think that it should not be censored out of any future edition of this book (as has been suggested) because it is a reflection of its times. As a matter of fact, there are traces of Canada's racist attitudes of the time in LM Montgomery's more famous works too - even in the Anne of Green Gables series, where short but pointed bits of racism towards French Canadians appear. (In the 1985 TV mini-series, the story is given a modern update of sorts when the neighbor who offers to buy the Cuthberts' farm is a French Canadian; that would probably have been unthinkable in real turn of the last century Prince Edward Island.)

While these things can jar modern sensibilities, they shouldn't be censored because they are a part of history. I suppose people who want to ban Huckleberry Finn from school curriculums might have a problem with the racism in any book, especially one for children or young adults, but how are we to learn from our past mistakes if we don't know about them?

Beyond the racist last story, the other stories are perhaps of a lesser quality than the ones in Chronicles with some exceptions, but are worth reading nevertheless.
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