by Peter

Title:

‘Anne of Green Gables’ (Anne of Green Gables #1)

Author:

Lucy Maud Montgomery

Pages:

468

Reading Level:

Competent

Published:

September 1st 2013 (first published 1908)

Publisher, this copy:

Random House UK

Feelings Thermometer:







In the beginning of the 20th century, 11 year old Anne Shirley is left alone at Avonlea station at Prince Edward Island in Canada. She’s an orphan, and the asylum just left her there to be picked up by her new foster parents, the childless middle-aged siblings, Matthew and Marilla.

But there has been a mistake. Matthew and Marilla wanted a boy to help with the work, but as Matthew is softhearted and can’t reject the adorable little girl at the station, he says nothing about it, takes Anne with him in the wagon and drives her home to their house at Green Gables, only to leave the surprise and the hard decision to Marilla.

100 years anniversary, and a little more

Of course there wouldn’t be a famous story about Anne Shirley from Avonlea, if Matthew and Marilla didn’t let Anne stay. Lucy Maud Montogomery got this first book published in 1908, the second ‘Anne of Avonlea’ came in 1909 and the third ‘Anne of the island’ in 1915, so the stories celebrates 100 years anniversary, they have sold more than 50 million copies and they are translated into more than 20 different languages.

Grew up with the 1985 movie adaptation

Until now I had only seen the famous CBC movie adaptation from 1985 with Megan Follows as Anne, and I must say I love it deep into my heart. There are absolutely no Christmas at my house without the ‘Anne of Green Gables’ mini-series, and therefore I was a bit nervous to finally read it. Could Lucy Maud’s real descriptions of Anne fulfill my gigantic expectations?

Just more philosophical lines

They actually could! The CBC-series follows the stories in the book closely, only Anne has a lot more philosophical lines in the book, and she uses quite some time to describe the wildlife, all the flowers and the beautiful landscapes on Prince Edward Island. At one point I thought all Anne’s dreaming would be too much, but then again, when they became too philosophical, they also annoyed Marilla, and then again, I couldn’t stop laughing because I realized that they’re supposed to be exactly like that to draw the perfect picture of this quixotic, adorable little girl.

Excerpt from ‘Anne of Green Gables’

Anne came running in presently, her face sparkling with the delight of her orchard rovings; but, abashed at finding the delight herself in the unexpected presence of a stranger, she halted confusedly inside the door. She certainly was an odd-looking little creature in the short tight wincey dress she had worn from the asylum, below which her thin legs seemed ungracefully long. Her freckles were more numerous and obstrusive than ever; the wind had ruffled her hatless hair into overbrilliant disorder; it had never looked redder than at that moment.

“Well, they didn’t pickyou for the looks, that’s sure and certain,” was Mrs. Rachel Lynde’s emphatic comment. Mrs. Rachel was one of those delightful and popular people who pride themselves on speaking their mind without fear or favor. “She’s terrible skinny and homely, Marilla. Come her, child, and let me have a look at you. Lawful heart, did anyone ever see such freckles? And hair as red as carrots! Come here, child, I say.”

Anne “came there,” but not exactly as Mrs. Rachel expected. With one bound she crossed the kirchen floor and stood efore Mrs. Rachel, her face scarlet with anger, her lips quivering, and her whole slender form trembling from head to foot.

Forever and ever!

Contrary to the etiquette for girls and women at that time, Anne is brave, honest and has a profound sense for justice, and that’s why she has become our little heroine, not only when we were kids, but also now when we’re grownups. Every story and every chapter left smiles, hope and ‘courage to live life’ in me.

Yes, Anne Shirley, I do like you enough to be your bosom friend – forever and ever! 🙂