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Author Spotlight: L.M. Montgomery / OSWT: O Canada

March 26th, 2008 (07:01 am)

Current Mood: awake
Current Song: Love Song by Sara Bareilles

My age registered in single digits when my mother handed me a copy of Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. I immediately opened the book and read the first paragraph. I exclaimed, "It's all one run-on sentence!" I suppressed the urge to rewrite that paragraph and kept reading.

In short order, I read all eight of the books about Anne Shirley. I was delighted by her misadventures. It was the first time I'd read a series that followed a character's entire life. It was fun to watch Anne grow up and change from an unwanted orphan to an adopted daughter and student to a teacher and a mother. The earlier books, powered by the fun of youth and whimsy, are my favorites in the series.

I love the character of Anne Shirley because she is smart, spunky, sassy, bold, determined, and creative. I related her to her love of stories, her insatiable appetite for knowledge, and her vivid imagination.

After tackling the Anne octet, I read many of L.M. Montgomery's other stories, such as the Emily trilogy and Magic for Marigold. I found them all enjoyable. Montgomery's writing is detailed and exquisite, with dialogue specific to certain characters and accurate depictions of small towns and certain time periods. She created characters which were both daring and thoughtful, who fought to realize their dreams, and who respected their origins and their families.

I've never been to Canada, but someday, I'd like to visit Prince Edward Island, the province where many of Montgomery's stories take place. Until then, I'll simply watch Kevin Sullivan's great film adaptations of Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea starring the incredible Megan Follows and feel as if I'm there.

Learn More about Lucy Maud Montgomery

You may read many of Lucy Maud Montgomery's works online, thanks to Project Gutenberg.

Wikipedia offers a biography and bibliography about the author.

University of Guelph in Canada appears to have a lovely collection of Lucy Maud Montgomery's manuscripts, journals, and scrapbooks.

Montgomery's granddaughter reveals the circumstances of her death in a Globe and Mail piece published in September 2008.

Travel on Today's One-Shot World Tour

Last year, Colleen's idea to spotlight books and authors from a specific country led to the One Shot World Tour: Best Read With Vegemite, a blogfest of love for Australian authors.

Since the first One Shot World Tour (OSWT) was a success, we're taking another trip. Join us today as we celebrate Canadian authors. Simply post about any book of any genre for any age group written by a Canadian author, then provide Colleen with the link to your post and you'll be included in the day's round-up.

Today's participants include:
Aurora's Journal
Big A, little a
Bookshelves of Doom
A Chair, a Fireplace & a Tea Cozy
Chasing Ray
Chicken Spaghetti
Educating Alice
Finding Wonderland (Post 1)
Finding Wonderland (Post 2)
A Fuse #8 Production
The Journal of Impossible Things
Once Upon a Bookshelf
Original Content
Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast
Shaken & Stirred
Teen Book Review
Wands and Worlds
Worth the Trip


Posted by: taylormorris (taylormorris)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 03:22 pm (UTC)
Anne is not Scarlett

This book has been on my shelf since I was in college. For my 20th birthday, I told my dad I wanted the VHS (shut up, it was long ago) of Gone With the Wind. I swore that was all I wanted for all eternity. Instead, I got Anne of Green Gables the book. Words can not express the level of dumbfoundedness I experienced when I opened that package. I refused to read the book, decided to reread Gone With the Wind, and later bought my own dang GWTW movie (DVD, thank you very much). But, okay, perhaps you've inspired me to pull that book off the shelf, dust it off and give it a chance!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 03:36 pm (UTC)
Re: Anne is not Scarlett

I am glad that this post inspired you to give Anne of Green Gables a chance. I hope you enjoy it!

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 05:18 pm (UTC)
Prince Edward Island

(This is Sara, by the way... I can't figure out how to use OpenID). You should definitely visit PEI if you ever get the chance. I went when I was 14, and it really is as beautiful as the books make it sound (and the soil really is red)!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 05:19 pm (UTC)
Re: Prince Edward Island

Hi Sara! How are you?
Someday... someday!

Posted by: Lauren (begliocchi)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 05:26 pm (UTC)

Oh mercy. Get the Canadian bookseller going. =)

For Christmas one year I received the first three "Anne" books, and my brother was given a box set of Gordon Korman books - the "MacDonald Hall" series (This Can't be Happening at MacDonald Hall, Go Jump in the Pool, Beware the Fish, The War with Mr. Wizzle, The Zucchini Warriors). I read them before my brother ever did (and eventually adopted them - which is how books given to my brother usually ended up). They tell the story of two students at an all boys private school - Bruno, the feisty troublemaker and Boots, the level headed boy drawn into Bruno's schemes. Almost everything happens with the assistance (and enthusiasm!) of the all girls finishing school across the road. Gordon Korman is a fantastic young adult Canadian author. He has since branched out to write a series of young adult adventures called "Everest". He's a literary gem.

For general adult fiction I would pick Anne Marie MacDonald. I saw her play, "Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet)" and needed to read more by her. Her first novel, "Fall On Your Knees", is not for the faint of heart. Dealing with a mixed culture family as is survives trials, tribulations and the first world war while living in Nova Scotia, many more adult themes are explored. The quality of the writing, and the central theme of family makes it easier to digest the more questionable aspects of the story. I highly recommend it, it is one of my favourite books.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 05:32 pm (UTC)

Go Canada! :) Let me know if you post this at your blog and I'll add it to the round-up!

Posted by: Lauren (begliocchi)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 05:49 pm (UTC)

It's up at my LJ (if that counts as a blog - everything but the book post is friends locked), feel free to link. =)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 09:21 pm (UTC)


Posted by: mimagirl (mimagirl)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 06:31 pm (UTC)

I keep meaning to reread the Anne books!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 07:06 pm (UTC)

They never get old.

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 10:43 pm (UTC)
From a.fortis:

I need to re-read these, too...my reading list just keeps getting longer and longer! :)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 04:34 pm (UTC)
Re: From a.fortis:


(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 09:21 pm (UTC)

Thank you for the link. I hadn't heard of the Institute before. Oh my goodness - They give out an Avery Scholarship! How perfect!

Enjoy the reading and the re-reading.

I saw a few episodes of Road to Avonlea, and I think highly of Sarah Polley, but I did not watch that series regularly.

Posted by: morningstorms (morningstorms)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 10:06 pm (UTC)
Fraggles // book

Anne was one of my favourite series growing up, though my favourite of the series was Rilla of Ingleside. Still is - I find there's so much depth in that book alone. Plus, Kenneth Ford! Ah, he was my dream man for many-a-year. :)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 26th, 2008 10:08 pm (UTC)

Rilla was a good book, but I wasn't fully engaged in the storyline because I was wondering, "What about Anne?" ;)

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 01:25 am (UTC)

More evidence that I'm a poseur kidlit fan: I've never read the Anne books. I know, I know... I'll get around to it one day. Thanks to you, I'll try to make it sooner than later.


Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 04:24 pm (UTC)
Re: Shh...

Never EVER?!

Posted by: Susane Colasanti (windowlight)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 02:26 am (UTC)

Anne Shirley is one of the most amazing characters ever written. Period (i.e. no run-on sentence necessary).

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 04:22 pm (UTC)


Posted by: Aurora (kilmata)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 07:17 pm (UTC)

Okay. You'll have to forgive me for being late... But i didn't play catch up on LJ until late last night, and then I needed time to think...

Since I'm an avid reader, and Canadian. I immediately felt the urge to add my two cents... But that led me to the major dilemma of finding a book. It occurred to me as I racked my brain in search of the perfect book, that I really need to make more of an effort to read more 'Canadian' books.

As I scanned my overly full bookshelves in the hopes of inspiration my eyes hit a Thick Purple book and it was not unlike hitting the jackpot.

The book is called "Booky A Trilogy," by Bernice Thurman Hunter and its actually three books in one. The story is of a skinny young girl named Beatrice Thompson or 'Booky', and her life growing up in the Great Depression. It details how her large family struggled to make ends meet as they were shunted from home to home by the Bailiff, and how they still manage to support one another despite the hard times.

I first discovered Booky on my teachers bookshelf in Grade 12. She had the first two books, "That Scatterbrain Booky", and "With Love, From Booky," at the time I didn't realize there was a third. I immediately fell in love with 9 year old Booky and her antics, and enjoyed watching her grow and flourish despite her families situation.

I was almost 14 when I spotted the Booky Trilogy on the shelf at Save on Foods... I insisted on getting it then and there, and discovered that the Third story "As Ever, Booky" which details her later teen years as she begins to experience dating, and her first job.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 07:38 pm (UTC)

You should post this at your blog, hint hint - AND you should be at the readergirlz chat with Sarah Dessen right now!


Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 07:39 pm (UTC)

Also, no joke, I was going to email you about the OSWT O Canada day. :)

Posted by: Aurora (kilmata)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 07:55 pm (UTC)

I am at the chat :p I'm just silent.

Im in a brain fart where no good questions are coming to me. I am however enjoying all of everyone else's questions and Sarah's answers. :)

(Just for the record)

I will post it on my LJ shortly :)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 08:20 pm (UTC)

Lurker! :)

Posted by: Aurora (kilmata)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)

Guilty as charged.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: March 27th, 2008 09:43 pm (UTC)

(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: May 22nd, 2008 04:22 am (UTC)

Nice to meet you! Thanks for the kind words about my reviews. I'm glad that you associate the Anne books with strength, and that they helped you through.

(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: September 28th, 2008 05:39 pm (UTC)
Re: Poor Lucy.

I hope so.

Enjoy the books.

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