Last week I finished reading Anne of Avonlea and was just about to start watching the corresponding film when Jean, a good bloggy friend of mine, warned me that the film combines books two and three. So even though I had just begun to read another book, I quickly set said book aside and returned to my Kindle and the world of Avonlea in Montgomery’s third Anne novel, Anne of the Island, which chronicles Anne’s formative years in college at Redmond in Kingsport.
I really do feel like this series gets better and better with each installment. I adored this book and how timelessly Montgomery describes the college experience, from those first nervous days in a new place, to gradually forming a new group of friends and way of life, the trials and tribulations and exciting times.
Then comes the experience of returning home after having been away. Sometimes it’s a welcome relief and other times, just strange as you realize the things which have changed and the things which haven’t and you gradually come to realize how you never really can go home again to that idealized version of the home in your mind at least. The whole thing was just perfect, the new characters wonderful (even when they were terrible).
This is also the book where That Love Story finally comes to a head. Declarations are made, love stories unfold and it’s not an easy road for Anne, that’s for sure. It’s not easy growing up and seeing friendships change for better or for worse and it takes Anne awhile to decide what she wants in life truly and what ideals of hers are really just old fancies with no foothold in reality when all is said and done.
So now I have finished the book, loved the book, swooned and sighed and even cried a bit with this book – and now I can watch the film (finally!) in peace with no fear of spoilers. I also feel as though Book Three manages to leave the story at a point of contentment. The story is not finished but the waters are calm and I feel like I can move onto the many other books on my shelves to be read without feeling impatient to rush back to Prince Edward Island. I know I will go on to finish the series, but there is no longer an urgent rush to do so, rather I can save them for a treat later on in between reads.
I read this book in part for my participation in Carrie @ Reading To Know’s L.M. Montgomery Reading Challenge this month and coincidentally it also happens to be regarded as a classic work of literature making it count in my 2011 Classics Challenge as well.
7 responses to “I Read: Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery”
I loved this book — it captured so perfectly that young adult time when some changes are exciting and others are dismaying. I so felt Anne’s angst over the changes — Diana’s marriage, etc. And I loved envisioning the girls boarding at Patty’s Place.
I’d get up and tap dance after reading your thoughts on this one but my pregnant back is aching and I don’t think it would appreciate it. 😉 I’m impressed by your self-discipline in NOT watching the movie until you read this book. Yay you!
Loved this line, ” . . . the new characters wonderful (even when they were terrible).” Ah ha, yes!
See? I read these reviews and thoughts and I just get so hyped up about reading more Montgomery for myself. You all make it SUCH a pleasure!
[…] and makes you feel like you are there and part of the story and it all ends perfectly just like Anne of the Island does, with such warm feelings in your […]
[…] I’ve only read up to book three, Anne of the Island and didn’t initially realize the movie would include book four, Anne of Windy Poplars also. I […]
Don’t you just love Gilbert and Anne’s tempestuous relationship.
Yep I cry every time. I will almost say, they do “Gilbert is sick and dying and the proposal” even better in the show. Prepare for tissues! Curse you netflix in preventing Jen’s Green Gables closure! Yes you can totally take a break now after the show.
Oh I was wondering on your facebook if you just couldn’t wait any longer. Please tell me (it’s been awhile) that love story does come to the head, right? Sigh of relief yet with this book? I forgot. I admit I’ve stressed wondering if I told you wrong.