Sunday, June 01, 2008

Are you a kindred spirit too?

Montgomery, L.M. 1908. Anne of Green Gables.

I first 'discovered' Anne Shirley through watching the 1985 and 1987 films by Kevin Sullivan/Wonderworks when they aired on my local PBS station. As far as I'm concerned, these two are the ONLY films that are 'real.' Meaning that the monstrosity of a film released in 2000 doesn't exist at all. It's something that should be avoided at all costs. It is evil, evil, pure evil.

It would have been around sixth or seventh grade (1989-1990 or 1990-1991) that I 'discovered' the Anne of the books by L.M. Montgomery. It was love at first sight pure and simple. I loved Anne of Green Gables, yes, but I loved all of the Anne books. Then I moved from loving all the Anne books to loving all the Emily books. And then I started loving all the stand-alone novels Tangled Web and Blue Castle. And then I discovered the short story collections. My sister started it, I suppose. She was the official owner of all the L.M. Montgomery books. And she never let me forget it either. I simply loved and adored L.M. Montgomery. She was the best of the best as far as I was concerned.

What is there to love about Anne Shirley? Everything! She's creative, imaginative, bright, vibrant, contagiously fun, good-spirited, and lovable. In a word she is charming. Oh to see the world through the eyes of Anne. There is something so wonderfully innocent and optimistic about Anne.

In Anne of Green Gables (1908), the reader is introduced to Avonlea. We meet Anne, Marilla, Matthew, Rachel, Diana, Gilbert, and those awful Pyes as well. The characters, the settings, the rich-and-detailed text...everything about this book is perfect.

Anne of Green Gables
Walk with her through Avonlea
Kindred spirit, yes?

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Annette Laing 5:11 PM  

Yes, yes, yes!! I agree with you about the fab Megan Follows/Colleen Dewhurst version, but I was originally introduced to Anne by a fine BBC production in the 1970s. Sadly, it's not available anymore, and it's not as good as the PBS one.
I love that Anne is so wonderfully spacy and imperfect, and has such a nose for mischief and trouble. And, of course, her imagination is just lovely. She was definitely my role model and, yes, I did feel like a kindred spirit. For one thing, I drove the Marillas in my life nuts (Mrs. D. in my book was definitely inspired by one of them, an old teacher of mine...)

Kim L 8:29 PM  

I loved the movies! I can't remember if I read the books first or saw the movies first, but I loved them both. I don't know if I've read everything by L.M. Montgomery, but I must have read everything in my city library when I was younger. I can't recall it all now, but I remember being very fond of her writing.

Framed 1:29 PM  

I totally agree. I love everything I've read by Montgomery. There are still some out there I haven't read yet (a few Emilys and Janes and The Blue Castle, Among the Shadows,another Story Girl book etc.) It's wonderful that she not only wrote beautifully but was so productive.

Clare - The Super Mommy Club 12:48 PM  

I don't remember the movies - I saw a televised series - the one from the cover of one of the book editions - that I loved almost as much as the books!

If you haven't read Before Green Gables yet you should get hold of a copy - it's a very well written book and I'm enjoying finding out more about the young Anne

Anonymous,  5:10 PM  

I read the Emily books first. Then all the Anne books. I didn't see the movies until I was an adult but thought Megan Follows and Emily Dewhurst were perfect. Oh, and Matthew--I loved Matthew in the movies.

Anne girl may be my all time favorite character.

64th Guides 9:54 AM  

Ah, and what is my current favourite thing to listen to? Anne of Green Gables as read by Megan Follows! I have the set on cassette and listen to them often. I do not like any other version of AofGG as a book on tape. Now, if only they would release it on cd.

Anonymous,  11:08 AM  

Hello 64th., I am new here and I read your comment on the ''Anne of Green Gables Audio Books. Do you know where I can find them or send for them? Do you have a store name or an address? I have just become aquainted with ''Anne of Green Gables'' and loved it. Thank You So Much....Shirley

Laura's Reviews 3:17 PM  

Yes - a fellow kindred spirit! I had a similar experience to yours . . .I first fell in love with the mini-series and then read the books around sixth or seventh grade. I couldn't stop reading L.M. Montgomery until I made my way through all of the series, stand alone novels, and short story collections. I am the proud older sister that owns them all. I only hope I either have a daughter or convince one of my sons to love Anne in the future.

Bex 9:05 AM  

For those who haven't read the book, an eBook and audio book is available online in Bookjive. Just click on the link that says eBook or Audio book at the top of the summary page.

Julia,  6:36 PM  

I have to admit, although I liked this book, I can't say I loved it. I was a little bored at times. The series moves a bit slow. This really is a great website!

Jeff LeMaster 3:20 PM  

Montgomery's beautiful descriptions of Prince Edward Island have definitely put that destination on my bucket list.

My family and I love the "Anne" books and TV movies, especially my oldest who is a red-headed girl!

Loved the haiku at the end of the review. Kindred spirit, yes!

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