Saturday, April 21, 2018

Keep It Short #16

This week I read two L.M. Montgomery short stories.

The Romance of Jedediah.

First sentence: Jedediah was not a name that savoured of romance. His last name was Crane, which is little better. And it would be no use to call this story "Mattie Adams's Romance" because Mattie Adams is not a romantic name either.

Premise/plot: Jedediah is a tin peddler. He's new to the job. He decides to pay a call at the home of his old sweetheart never dreaming that she'd still be living there after all those years. She invites him in. He accepts. The neighbors begin to talk--as neighbors do in Montgomery's stories. Will their romance be rekindled?

My thoughts: I definitely liked this one!

Romance cares not for appearances and apparently delights in contradictions. The homely shambling man you pass unnoticed on the street may have, tucked away in his past, a story more exciting and thrilling than anything you have ever read in fiction.
"What a fool you are, Jed Crane," he told himself. "You used to be a young fool, and now you're an old one. Sad, that! Get up, my nag, get up. It's a poor lookout for a man of your years, Jed. Don't get excited. It ain't the least likely that Mattie Adams is here yet. She's married and gone years ago, no doubt. It's probable there's no Adamses here at all now. But it's romantic, yes, it's romantic. It's splendid. Get up, my nag, get up."
When Selena had come over Mattie had not the slightest idea of resuming her former relationship with the romantic Jedediah. She had merely shown him kindness for old friendship's sake. But so well did the unconscious Selena work in Jed's behalf that when she flounced off home in a pet Mattie was resolved that she would take Jed back if he wanted to come. She wasn't going to put up with Selena's everlasting interference. She would show her that she was independent.
"Well, this is romance. What else would you call it now? Me, poor, scared to speak—and Mattie ups and does it for me, bless her. Yes, I've been longing for romance all my life, and I've got it at last. None of your commonplace courtships for me, I always said. Them was my very words. And I guess this has been a little uncommon—I guess it has. Anyhow, I'm uncommon happy. I never felt so romantic before. Get up, my nag, get up."
The Tryst of the White Lady
First sentence: "I wisht ye'd git married, Roger," said Catherine Ames.

Premise/plot: Does Roger fall in love with a ghost? A beautiful, impossible to obtain phantom? An old family haunt? Roger definitely is in love--or at the very least in love with love--by the end of the story. But who is the mystery girl?

My thoughts:  This is a strange story. But at least the girl is real enough.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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