Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

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I don't review books I don't like!

*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
**      = Enjoyable
*        = Good, with reservations


****Anne of Avonlea

by L. M. Montgomery

Reviewed October 17, 2001.
A Sonderbooks' Best Book of 2001
Copyright has expired, so this is available from many different publishers.  Available at Sembach Library (JF MON).

This is the second book of L. M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables series.  I admit, it’s my least favorite of them all, but L. M. Montgomery’s worst is better than many people’s best!

This is only the third book she’d written, and there are some flaws.  She annoyingly tells us periodically that we can read about some incident in Anne’s first book of adventures.  My opinion is that in a series, it’s best to simply assume that the reader read the first book, or drop pertinent information in little bits as you go.  Terry Brooks does this, at least, well in his latest series.  Even J. K. Rowling has a horribly boring second chapter in her second book where she summarizes what went before.  So I can’t hold it against L. M. Montgomery, and she learns her lesson and never does it again.  (Same for J. K. Rowling, so far.)

L. M. Montgomery’s strong point is never plot, and this book is one of the weaker in that respect.  It’s the story of sixteen-year-old Anne’s two years of teaching school in the one-room schoolhouse in Avonlea.  The book is tied together mostly by being a chronological period in Anne’s life.  The author’s strong point is character.  She creates quirky and entertaining characters who are delightfully interesting.  In this book, a set of twins, Davy and Dora, come to live at Green Gables.  Davy is a holy terror of mischief, and his antics are great fun.  Anne’s experiences teaching are also presented well.  Can you imagine teaching school at sixteen?  L. M. Montgomery did the same herself, so perhaps that’s why her description is so entertaining.

I’m on a roll now.  Every few years, I feel the need to revive my spirits with L. M. Montgomery’s books, and now I’ve definitely gotten going on the Anne series again.  So you’ll be hearing about the rest, too!

Reviews of other L. M. Montgomery books:
The Blue Castle
Kilmeny of the Orchard
Emily of New Moon
Emily Climbs
Emily's Quest
The Story Girl
The Golden Road
Magic for Marigold
Chronicles of Avonlea
Further Chronicles of Avonlea
The Alpine Path
The Watchman and Other Poems

The Anne Series:
Anne of Green Gables
Anne of the Island
Anne of Windy Poplars
Anne's House of Dreams
Anne of Ingleside
Rainbow Valley
Rilla of Ingleside
The Road to Yesterday

Before Green Gables, by Budge Wilson
Marilla of Green Gables, by Sarah McCoy
The Annotated Anne of Green Gables
The Landscapes of Anne of Green Gables, by Catherine Reid
House of Dreams, by Liz Rosenberg

List in Publication Order

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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