Rilla of Ingleside (Anne of Green Gables, No. 8)

by L. M. Montgomery

Paperback, 1992

Status

Available

Local notes

PB Mon

Barcode

1463

Publication

Bantam Books (1985), 277 pages

Description

Fifteen-year-old Rilla, the daughter of Anne Shirley Blythe, grows from a carefree, irresponsible girl into a strong and capable young woman during the war years, 1914-1918.

Language

Original language

English

Original publication date

1921
1996 (Nouvelle édition française, Presses de la Cité)

Physical description

277 p.; 4.19 inches

Media reviews

Rilla of Ingleside is a war novel at times masquerading as a young adult historical romance. But it is far more than that; it is a detailed study of rural Canadian life during the First World War, written by a woman who lived through it and distilled it all with her trademark restrained emotion
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into a gem of a novel.
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1 more
Montgomery writes beautifully and brings tears of both sorrow and joy on the turning of every page. I would recommend this book for anyone and everyone as it is a wonderful story and has all the elements needed for a good book.

User reviews

LibraryThing member atimco
Rilla of Ingleside has long been one of my favorites among the Anne books, which is interesting because it's so very different from the rest of the books. All the sudden the little familiar world of Anne's community, concerned only with its gossip and small funny episodes, is invaded by huge events
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happening outside on the international stage. World War I begins and everything is changed forever.

As the titles implies, this story focuses on Anne's youngest daughter Rilla (short for Bertha Marilla). She is almost fifteen, a lovely, slightly vain and thoughtless young girl enjoying her first dance when the news comes that Britain has declared war on Germany. And Canada cannot let "the old grey mother of the northern sea" fight it out alone. One by one Rilla's brothers and playmates enlist as the war takes over their lives even in secure little Glen St. Mary. Rilla, trying to find herself in the sudden turmoil of her world, finds herself landed with a war-baby to take care of — she, Rilla Blythe, who doesn't even like infants and has no inkling of how to take care of one!

I think I love this book so much because Montgomery manages to tie these world-shaking events to the familiar, comfortable lives of her characters. There is great good humor in this story mixed with the tragedy and fear... just like in real life. The war is always looming, but in the midst of it the Ingleside folk still manage to be themselves. Susan Baker in particular is a wonderful example of this. Susan is first introduced in Anne's House of Dreams but it isn't clear then what a fun character she will become. In this story she really comes into her own. We see the war through her eyes, with her optimistic, sometimes scorching commentary on it, and this is a brilliant move on Montgomery's part. It's so funny because Susan firmly believes that the Kaiser is deeply interested in everything that happens in Glen St. Mary, but several times Montgomery takes us past the humor and shows Susan's fierce, honest patriotism.

Rilla herself is an unusual heroine for Montgomery. She hasn't a spark of ambition, isn't terribly smart or addicted to poetry and literature, doesn't like babies, and starts off rather vain and selfish and thoughtless. I was never really comfortable with her lack of ambition, being full of it myself. But there is something winning about her, and as I reread the book this time I chuckled to myself at how often my own diaries from that age echo Rilla's. It is good to see how she develops through the awful war years.

Montgomery's scorn for pacifists and anyone with pro-German sentiments is quite clear from her depiction of Mr. Pryor — known as "Whiskers-on-the-Moon" because of his great round face and fringe of ridiculous whiskers. He really is a funny character and figures in two of the most hilarious scenes of the book, when Norman Douglas violently stops his pacifist prayer at the union prayer meeting and when Susan chases him out of her kitchen with a pot of boiling dye. Montgomery lived through this war and Rilla of Ingleside was published in 1920. Clearly she felt very strongly about the war and patriotism, and it's hard to argue with her.

This story succeeds on so many levels. It's a wonderful addition to the Blythe family chronicles, but it is also a great depiction, in its own right, of life in Canada during World War I. Funny, sad, and ultimately hopeful, Rilla of Ingleside is a treasure.
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LibraryThing member susanbevans
Rilla of Ingleside is the final book in L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables series. The story is of Rilla, Anne and Gilbert Blythe's youngest daughter. It has been nearly ten years since the events of Rainbow Valley took place, and Rilla is fourteen. Europe has joined in World War I and many
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boys from Canada are going to war, including Rilla's brothers and the Meredith boys. With her sisters and friends away at college, Rilla is left at home with her parents. Over the next few years she grows from a fun-loving child into a more mature young woman.

Rilla of Ingleside is not much of an Anne book in the classical sense - there is not much Anne in the story, as was the case with the last few books in the series. However, taken alone Rilla of Ingleside is a very interesting and well-written novel. L.M. Montgomery's account of World War I from the homefront and out of the eyes of Rilla Blythe is breathtaking. The tragedy of war is illustrated second-hand, through the effect it has on the women waiting for their sons and husbands at home.

Rilla of Ingleside is a realistic and emotional journey through the minds and hearts of the people left behind in war - friends and family waiting, with lives put on hold. Though it is heartbreaking at times (as stories set in times of war tend to be,) it is expressive and penetrative and gives the reader an authentic look at the Canadanian homefront during World War I. Rilla of Ingleside is a beautifully written and powerful novel.
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LibraryThing member bookworm12
This is the eighth and final book in the Anne of Green Gables series. I’ve slowly been working my way through the series and in the last couple books I really missed having Anne as one of the main characters. In this installment Anne’s youngest daughter, Rilla takes center stage and the book
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got back to the heart of the first few books. It embraced all of my favorite elements from the early books.

It’s a bit more serious than the previous books. The characters are forced to deal with the realities of war and the loss of their quiet lives as their sons and sweethearts are sent off to fight in World War I. It deals with big issues, but offers perspective and hope along with the drama. The book was published shortly after WWI ended, so the trauma everyone had experienced must have been very fresh in Montgomery’s mind as she wrote this.

The characters see firsthand how painful war is as they watch the men in the community leave to fight in battles on another continent. Some of the men feel the need to leave immediately and join the fight; others struggle with a desire to serve their country while wanting peace. The women are left to take care of the homes alone. They all believe the war will be over soon and begin to loose hope as months stretch into years.

We see the hurried wedding of a war bride and the fate of an orphaned baby whose father is at the front and whose mother dies in childbirth. Rilla takes care of the war baby and she has to go from being an innocent teenager to a woman over the course of the war. We also see Rilla and her mother, our beloved Anne, stretched to the point of breaking as they fight their own fear and grief.

SPOILERS

When Walter died my heart broke. Rilla’s brother was the person she was closest to in the whole world. My own brother is one of my best friends and the thought of losing him in a war is terrifying. Walter’s last letter to Rilla will stay with me for years to come. His words about the power of sacrifice and being at peace with death are more beautiful than I can explain.

SPOILERS OVER

BOTTOM LINE: I love this series so much and this book is now among my favorites. It was a fitting ending to the saga and I look forward to re-reading the whole series in the future.

“It is a strange thing to read a letter after the writer is dead, a bittersweet thing in which pain and comfort are strangely mingled.”

“Ah yes, you’re young enough not to be scared of perfect things.”
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LibraryThing member HeatherLINC
This last book in the "Anne" series was, by far, my favourite. Set during the years of World War I, it gave a wonderful insight into what the women, who had brothers, husbands and lovers on the front, had to endure for four long, torturous years. Unable to protect their men, they put on brave faces
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and went to work keeping vigil, knitting and baking for the soldiers and planning rushed weddings. As Rilla's world crashed around her and challenges bombarded her, she had to grow up quickly, In those unpredictable times, she went from a naive, frivolous teenager to a mature, strong, young woman.

I shed tears throughout "Rilla of Ingleside" far more than I did in another "Anne: book and Dog Monday's story had me sobbing. It was so incredibly moving and I could clearly picture him - dear, faithful, little dog.

I also liked the analogy of the Pied Piper calling the boys to war. The author did this beautifully and Walter's poem was truly poignant. I also loved following his journey. Walter was such a gentle, sensitive soul and his letter to Rilla was powerful.

While the "Anne" series had its ups and downs, "Rilla of Ingleside" finished the series perfectly. A true classic.
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LibraryThing member savageknight
This book, the final in the "original" Anne of Green Gables series, was such a wonderful volume to end the series on! As mentioned by many - and as can be assumed from the title of the book - this volume is about Anne's youngest daughter, Rilla. It is her coming-of-age tale which happens amidst the
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shattering events of World War One.

We live through "watching" all those we care about in Glen St. Mary as they lose so many of their young men to war (and in some cases to death or dismemberment). While the impact of global events are felt by everyone, Rilla and the rest of the Blythe household persevere and deal with their losses, tragedies, and victories.

It's a very different book from the rest of the series as it deals with the harsh realities of life and the resilience of the human spirit, but it is not a completely "dark" book. Even during war, there are still joys to be had. Rilla of Ingleside was definitely a joy to read and probably the only other book in the series -besides the first- that I kept looking forward to continue reading.
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LibraryThing member fuzzi
The youngest of Anne's children, Rilla, is almost 15, and ready for the gaiety of more grown-up activities such as parties, and dances, and having a beau. But suddenly conflict overseas in Europe flares into war, dragging all the young men into military service; Rilla finds herself growing up
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quickly as her brothers and friends become soldiers for England and Canada's cause in World War I.

The final book in the "Anne of Green Gables" series is a little darker than the preceding books, but that is to be understood, due to the setting. It had been years since I'd read the previous books in this series, so relationships for some of the characters remained a dim memory, but I still enjoyed this story of irrepressible "Anne-with-an-E".
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LibraryThing member rainbowdarling
Rilla is one of the best of the Anne series, second (in most peoples' eyes) only to the one that started it all. Rilla's journey is well-paced and poignant, showing a well-drawn picture of what life was like during the first world war for many people. Rilla of Ingleside never fails ot make me cry,
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and I root for Rilla just as much as I rooted for Anne when she was tackling geometry and pining for puffed sleeves. It feels like this is the story in which Montgomery came back to the same feeling that was found in Anne of Green Gables, despite the years that spanned in between the first and what would later become the last in the series.
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LibraryThing member nancynova
Interesting to read a book published almost 100 years ago, when WWI was just over and WWII not even thought of. Rilla, Anne & Gilbert's youngest, is a fairly flightly girl at 15, until the war arrives & her brothers and sweetheart join up. While collecting $$ for the war effort, she stops at a home
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where the mother of a newborn has passed away & the aunt of the child is drunk. So, flighty Rilla takes Jims home in a soup tureen, because she didn't want the "war orphan" packed away to an orphanage while Dad is overseas.
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LibraryThing member lilygirl
For some people it may be difficult to read all 8 of the books, but it is worth the journey to get to this tale. Anne of Green Gables is still my favorite because I read it first, but Rilla of Ingleside never fails to make me cry. It has its own distinct feel to it and I in no way felt that the
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author was attempting to create a "little Anne." In fact, it is darker and more adult than the first one. I highly recommend this book!
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LibraryThing member puckrobin
Anne is all grown up, and Montgomery brings us details on the life of her youngest daughter, Rilla (named after Marilla Cuthbert, the woman who adopted Anne years ago at Green Gables). Rilla, like her mother, has a vivid imagination, but is very much more modern with a sharper sense of humour than
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Anne. While Montgomery allowed Anne to grow up with many of her romantic ideals in tact, Rilla begins to show readers some of Montgomery's less idealistic, darker views on life as Anne's family struggles through the uncertainty, change and personal loss visited on them by World War II.
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LibraryThing member FHC
An amazing story re-published with the many [4500] former publication cuts now replaced and included... edited by Benjamin Lefebvre, this special edition includes Montgomery’s complete, restored, and unabridged original text as well as a thoughtful introduction, detailed glossary, maps of Europe
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during the war, and war poems by L.M. Montgomery and her contemporary Virna Sheard.

In my latest story, “Rilla of Ingleside,” I have tried, as far as in me lies, to depict the fine and splendid way in which the girls of Canada reacted to the Great War – their bravery, patience and self-sacrifice. The book is theirs in a sense in which none of my other books have been: for my other books were written for anyone who might like to read them: but “Rilla” was written for the girls of the great young land I love, whose destiny it will be their duty and privilege to shape and share.
From L.M. Montgomery in “How I Became a Writer,” 1921

The coming of age of Anne's youngest daughter, fifteen yr old, Rilla, attending her first dance when the party is interrupted with the news of the anticipated Canadian involvement in the First WW .

The story is a vital depiction of the life of those keeping the faith on the homefront for family members away on the frontlines. The homefront called for measures of support and involvement that developed character and maturity unusual for a young woman of Rilla's age and personality.

Familial caring and stoic 'keeping calm' ~ coping in times of darkness & distress ~ the unknown that becomes the known ~ losses of lives and futures ~ authentically expressed emotions throughout.

Depths of despair to lofty heights of joy had me on a roller coaster throughout this story. Highly recommended, as usual, for another amazing LM Montgomery depiction of real life and beautiful character connection and development.
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LibraryThing member MrsLee
Nice stories with interesting characters, these later novels do not compare with the first three, but are still very readable.
LibraryThing member NadineC.Keels
I've read this book thrice in my life, and I'm pretty sure I was teary-eyed all three times.

I mean, the fact that you don't even need to know what "The Piper" by Private Walter Blythe said in order to know what it said... *sigh*
LibraryThing member castiron
WWI hits. The young men of the town go off to war, some never to return, none to return unchanged. The book has a lot of saccharine moments (Rilla’s Soul has been Honed by Tragedy and Work and is now that of a Woman, yeehaw), but the war keeps the book as a whole from being too cloying.
LibraryThing member Doggydone
The final book in the Anne of Greeen Gable series and one of the best titles, in my opinion. Anne's sons go to war, one is never to return. Meanwhile on the home front, Anne's girls work for their troops and of course, fall in love. A true classic
LibraryThing member Jey_13
For once, when a book claims to change your life, it actually does.

I still remember the evening I sat down with Rilla of Ingleside. 'Misery in books is overrated', I thought, and honestly, very few books have the knack of reaching deep into you- and twisting your heart. This is one of them.

It's
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1914, and the Great War is almost upon the world. However, cocooned in her secure world at Ingleside, Rilla's only worry is that she might not be attending a 'very important dance' and might not appear pretty enough. Shallow, you think? Honest. How many young girls can appreciate the consequences of a war?

Through this book- you can see Rilla's character grow- the volunteering at Red Cross society, the gritting of teeth as she adopts an orphan. When she finally realises the sacrifices that country and honor demand, she gives it her all.

As alwats, Montgomery weaves her magic thoroughly. This book has humour in parts, yes, but has a core of steel through it- duty, honor, sacrifice, and the love that only family can provide.

My copy of Rilla of Ingleside is worn, and yellowed, but I wouldn't exchange it for anything in the world. (except for an autographed copy by LMM. :D ) Because that's the true sign of a great book- you never want to let go of YOUR copy of it.
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LibraryThing member tjsjohanna
This is, if not the best book in the series, the second best. The novel is unique because it tells the story of the home front in Canada during World War I - one of the few to do so, and written just a few years after the end of the war. There are scenes that had me crying so that I couldn't read
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the text - who could forget Dog Monday greeting Jem? And there are Ideas in this book - noble and true and inspirational ideas. War is an ugly thing - but there are things worth dying for and Ms. Montgomery makes a case for the value of the things we pay dearly for. As a side note, I discovered that my treasured paperback copy is actually a slightly abridged version - the original 1921 novel is a bit more wordy and there are a number of funny "Susan" speeches that have been cut. The original novel has a subtly different flavor to it and is worth reading.
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LibraryThing member t1bclasslibrary
This book stands out a lot from the other books in this series which are a lot more carefree even when the characters are having problems. This one had way too much World War I for my taste. There was too much play by play about different battles and events. Rilla was a good character, and she
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definitely grows, but I had way too much having to hear about this or that war thing.
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LibraryThing member ThorneStaff
The main protagonist is Anne's youngest child, Rilla, who is just beginning to "come out" as a young woman at the onset of Canada's involvement in the First World War. At first she is petulant and selfish, but through the events of the war she really grows into a young woman who will make her
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parents -- and her community -- proud. The content is necessarily darker, and there is loss to the beloved family. But there are also scenes that remind us that even amidst great tragedy there is mighty triumph, in big and small ways. A fitting end to the 'Anne of Green Gables saga.
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LibraryThing member SylviaC
Rilla of Ingleside is very much about WWI. Although it takes place entirely on Prince Edward Island, the war is more than just a backdrop to the story. So there is significant loss and sadness, but it is still ultimately a positive book. Rilla (Anne's youngest child) shows huge character
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development, and there is plenty of humour and love. Next to Anne of Green Gables, it is my favourite book by L. M. Montgomery.
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LibraryThing member AngelaB86
A wonderful coming of age story, though not my favorite of the "Anne" books. Watching Rilla (Anne's youngest child) grow up during World War I is moving and sometimes heartbreaking.
LibraryThing member devafagan
[Re-read 2013]

I never really got excited about Rilla as a younger reader, but as an adult this is one of my favorites! It's so fascinating to see WWI through the eyes of Rilla and her family, at home in PEI, while the war rages on and one by one the young men go off to fight. Looking back from our
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current era, it is so odd and unnerving to read the propaganda, and yet Montgomery makes me understand where these characters are coming from. It is not an entirely comfortable book, for these reasons, but a lovely, heart-wrenching, eye-opening story.

I do especially appreciate Walter's perspective. And Rilla's growth and transformation are wonderfully depicted.
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LibraryThing member sweetiegherkin
In the last book of the Anne of Green Gables series, Anne's youngest child is now 15 years old and ready to embark on a fun teen-aged life of parties, flirtations, and more. Unfortunately, the world is on the brink of war and Rilla Blythe's teen years are nothing like what she expects.

This book is
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an odd ending for this series, although that's not necessarily all negative. It jumps forward many years since the previous title, with most of Anne's children now in adulthood, heading off to college and/or war. Only Rilla remains at home, and she's a bit of an obnoxious character at first with not a care in her head and no ambition beyond being pretty, being flattered, and having fun. As the novel progresses, Rilla grows up and actually becomes a likeable person, so I enjoyed the second half of the book considerably more than the first.

Meanwhile, most of the Green Gables characters are barely mentioned except in passing, and Anne herself isn't seen all that much, although more so here than in the previous title. The author introduces two new characters -- Susan's cousin Sophia and Rilla's teacher-turned-friend Gertrude Oliver. I wasn't really over the moon about either but, believe me, I was sick of Miss Cornelia so I was glad to have some other folks about for Susan to gab with about the news.

While the rest of the series manages to feel carefree, even when difficult topics come up or sad scenarios happen, this one is so much concerned about World War I that the moments of levity feel few and far between. It was sort of interesting to have read this book about the home front during this time period after having read All Quiet on the Western Front about the war side not that long ago. It is strange to me to think that such a dark topic written from the perspective of teens and adults is still considered children's literature by many and that I myself read as a child.

As the last book in a series, Montgomery seems to want to pair everyone off, matching many of the Blythe children with their Meredith pals from their youth. Rilla ends up with a romantic entanglement of her own but with her beau away at war for years with little ever heard about him, the only satisfaction in the conclusion is that Rilla is happy with the events, not that the reader ever feels any real chemistry or romance between the pair.
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LibraryThing member DeltaQueen50
In Rilla of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery we meet Anne Shirley Blyth’s youngest daughter, Marilla. Rilla is 15 years old and ready to enter into the adult world. She is hoping that soon her life will be filled with parties and fun activities. At her very first dance, she meets a young man who
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definitely takes her eye. Unfortunately it is 1914 and England and Germany have just declared war. The family eventually sees each of the three boys; Jem, Walter and Shirley, go off to war with Walter never to return home. Rilla also has to say goodbye to her beau, Ken, and makes a promise to wait for him.

In my re-read of the Anne of Green Gables series, I really enjoyed the first three “Anne” books. The rest have seen very dated and moralistic but Rilla of Ingleside is an exception. The story is set during World War I and this gives the story a strength and purpose. It’s sentimentality seems exactly right as the family and their friends are seeing their loved ones march off to war. This is also a picture of Canada during the war and what it was like to be so far away from the action yet so involved in all it’s details.

The story of Jem’s dog, Monday, waiting patiently at the train station for his master’s return brought me to tears. Rilla of Ingleside is an poignant read and mixes sadness with humor and a touch of romance. This was an excellent way to bring my reading about the Blythe family to an end.
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LibraryThing member FHC
Read in September, 2012

An amazing story re-published with the many [4500] former publication cuts now replaced and included... edited by Benjamin Lefebvre, this special edition includes Montgomery’s complete, restored, and unabridged original text as well as a thoughtful introduction, detailed
Show More
glossary, maps of Europe during the war, and war poems by L.M. Montgomery and her contemporary Virna Sheard.

In my latest story, “Rilla of Ingleside,” I have tried, as far as in me lies, to depict the fine and splendid way in which the girls of Canada reacted to the Great War – their bravery, patience and self-sacrifice. The book is theirs in a sense in which none of my other books have been: for my other books were written for anyone who might like to read them: but “Rilla” was written for the girls of the great young land I love, whose destiny it will be their duty and privilege to shape and share.
From L.M. Montgomery in “How I Became a Writer,” 1921

The coming of age of Anne's youngest daughter, fifteen yr old, Rilla, attending her first dance when the party is interrupted with the news of the anticipated Canadian involvement in the First WW .

The story is a vital depiction of the life of those keeping the faith on the homefront for family members away on the frontlines. The homefront called for measures of support and involvement that developed character and maturity unusual for a young woman of Rilla's age and personality.

Familial caring and stoic 'keeping calm' ~ coping in times of darkness & distress ~ the unknown that becomes the known ~ losses of lives and futures ~ authentically expressed emotions throughout.

Depths of despair to lofty heights of joy had me on a roller coaster throughout this story. Highly recommended, as usual, for another amazing LM Montgomery depiction of real life and beautiful character connection and development.
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Lexile

1030L

Pages

277

Rating

(837 ratings; 4.1)
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