Anne of Windy Poplars (Anne of Green Gables)

by L. M. Montgomery

Paperback, 1973


Check shelf

Call number

SC Mo c.2


Starfire (1983), Edition: Illustrated, 288 pages


Anne Shirley has left Redmond College behind to begin a new job and a new chapter of her life away from Green Gables. Now she faces a new challenge: the Pringles. They're known as the royal family of Summerside - and they quickly let Anne know she is not the person they wanted to be principal of Summerside High School. But as she settles into the cozy tower room at Windy Poplars, Anne finds she also has great allies: the widows Aunt Kate and Aunt Chatty and in their irrepressible housekeeper, Rebecca Dew, are on her side. As Anne learns Summerside's strangest secrets, winning the support of the prickly Pringles becomes only the first of her triumphs.

Local notes


User reviews

LibraryThing member atimco
In Anne of Windy Poplars, Anne and Gilbert are now engaged (finally!) and Anne accepts a principalship at a prestigious girls' school while Gilbert is finishing his medical degree. Summerside High is an old school, in an old, proud town full of Pringles. The Pringle clan runs everything in
Show More
Kingsport, and when they decide they don't like Anne because she beat out a cousin of theirs for the position, they embark on a campaign of subtle persecution which Anne's sensitive spirit feels keenly. Things come to such a pass that Anne is afraid she will lose her position, for how can she reason with prejudice?

With each new novel, Montgomery introduces new and delightful characters to add spice to the story and keep things from getting flat. The widows with whom Anne lodges, Aunt Chatty and Aunt Kate, and their servant Rebecca Dew are fun each in her own way. The buttermilk secret always makes me laugh. And I do love Katherine Brooke. She is decidedly different from Anne's other friends; the only comparable character in the series would probably be Nora Nelson... though there are hints of Leslie Ford as well, come to think of it.

One new character I'm not a big fan of is Elizabeth. She just seems too precocious and perfect to me. I think Montgomery wrote Elizabeth as a facet of herself; during her childhood she lived with her strict grandparents and her experiences with them might have been similar. Interestingly, Elizabeth's grandmother and servant do not soften or change by the end of the story. Elizabeth escapes, but the prison itself does not disappear.

Another thing I enjoy about this story is its epistolary nature. The only complaint I would make is that it would be nice to see some of Gilbert's letters to Anne. But I suppose they wouldn't be half so interesting or funny!

Although this isn't the first book I think of when I try to name my favorites among the series, it has so many brilliant little stories... Anne's day with the onerous invalid Mrs. Gibson, the disastrous dinner with sulky Cyrus Taylor, the affair of the play, Rebecca Dew's flowery but sincere goodbye note, Cousin Ernestine Bugle's dolorously hilarious visit, etc. This book is a joy to read and I'm so thankful that the Anne stories — wholesome, hilarious, wonderful — influenced me so much in my teen years. I think Anne makes me a better person.
Show Less
LibraryThing member TheLostEntwife
My memory of Anne of Windy Poplars is.. non-existent. It's been so long since I've read the books and I see the PBS movies (which are wonderful in their own right) once or twice throughout the year, so it's easy to forget that Anne of Avonlea (the movie edition) is a mix-match of several books in
Show More
the series.

In Anne of Windy Poplars the dreaded Pringles make their appearance. And it's oh so much more than the movie shows. They are so dreadful, each and every one of them, but everything else is an absolute delight. Windy Poplars, Rebecca Dew, Little Elizabeth and most of all - a character we rarely get to see in the book, Gilbert Blythe.

Wait, how can Gilbert be so wonderful? He's hardly in the book! I'll tell you why - because this book shows the reader just how beautiful love letters can be.

A good portion of Anne of Windy Poplars is composed of Anne's letters to "her dearest of dears" and they are so tender and sweet and filled with so much news and juicy tidbits and sweetness (with just the right amount of "pages omitted") that it set the romantic in me a-fluttering. Anne is learning how to be in love, something we see all too rarely in girls literature today. She has to be patient, to wait to make a life with the one her heart has chosen, but she does it so sweetly it's impossible not to feel the excitement. Romance doesn't need to be rushed. One doesn't need to spend all of ones time before the wedding crushed up against his or her chosen. Anne learns that absence sweetens the deal and her dreams grow because of it. And, in the process, sets aside a beautiful history to share with her own children.

Today we write emails and tweet to one another and love letters such as those in this book are a thing of the past. But they don't have to be - and if you need inspiration, pick up this book.
Show Less
LibraryThing member AbigailAdams26
First published in 1936, L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Windy Poplars was originally styled Anne of Windy Willows, a name that Montgomery herself changed, at the request of her American publishers, who felt that it bore too close a resemblance to Kenneth Grahame's classic animal fantasy, The Wind in the
Show More
Willows. Montgomery's English publishers, oddly enough, had no such worry, and thinking that their readers would be unfamiliar with poplars, retained the original title. So it is that American and Canadian readers know the book as Anne of Windy Poplars, and British, Australian and New Zealand readers as Anne of Windy Willows. I understand that there were also some scenes that were cut by Montgomery, once again at the behest of her American publishers, that were retained in Anne of Windy Willows, and hope to track down a copy of that other version of the story, at some point, and acquaint myself with the differences.

However that may be, it is Anne of Windy Poplars that I have just reread (for the umpteenth time), a book that is currently considered the fourth entry in the "Anne" series, although it was written and published seventh. Chronicling the three years between the events of Anne of the Island (1915), which sees Anne attending Redmond College, and Anne's House of Dreams (1917), in which Anne Shirley becomes Anne Blythe, and embarks upon the first years of married life, it is the tale of Anne's days as the Principal of Summerside High School, and her time as a boarder at Windy Poplars, the home of those two endearingly quirky widows, Aunt Kate and Aunt Chatty.

Alternating between the epistolary form, in which events unfold in Anne's letters to Gilbert (away at medical school), and third person narration, it feels rather episodic, when compared to some of Anne's other books, but is still immensely appealing - full of entertaining characters and incident, as well as a most engaging heroine. I loved Aunt Kate and Aunt Chatty's method of dealing with their sometimes recalcitrant (but always goodhearted) maid, Rebecca Dew (reverse psychology with a vengeance!); I loved Anne's battles with, and eventual conquest of the proud Pringle clan (cannibalism - the horror!); and, having a fondness for difficult people, I loved Anne's evolving relationship with the prickly Katherine Brooke. In short, I loved Anne of Windy Poplars (as I always do), and although there were certain elements I found less than thrilling (I could have lived without the entire Hazel Marr episode), my overall pleasure more than compensated. Highly recommended to any reader who has read the first three Anne books, and wants to continue the journey!
Show Less
LibraryThing member sedelia
Anne of Windy Poplars is the fourth installment of the Anne of Green Gables series. It is mostly set in a city called Summerside. Anne has left Redmond College to begin a job as principal of Summerside High School. She ends up staying in a place called “Windy Poplars” with two widows and an old
Show More
maid. Throughout the story Anne has to face winning the affections of the Pringle family, solving marital problems between her friends, and helping a little girl named Elizabeth find laughter in the world.
As with the rest of the series, this book is a thrilling read, with sorrows and triumphs. I feel that this book is missing something that the others have (it is probably the absence of Gilbert, who rarely shows up in this book), but it is fun and exciting all the same.
I would recommend this book to all fans of Anne of Green Gables, as well as to those who are simply looking for laughter and magic in their life.
Show Less
LibraryThing member mandochild
I become frustrated by the over-fanciful language and the reliance on episodic "vignettes" that are often too sweet or too pat. But then comes a moment of pure magic - a sudden jewel of a line. And some of the characterisations become more than clever pen portraits, becoming real and believable. It
Show More
is also a wonderful reminder on the importance of gratitude in life.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Wanderlust_Lost
Things move on apace in Anne's world and this installment of the series finds her as headmistress of a high school and living in a house called Windy Poplars.
This book deals more with Anne's relationship to Gilbert and her impending marriage and is written in epistolary form.
A slight departure
Show More
from the previous books it focuses solely on Anne's experience from a first person point of view.
It's not my favourite, but it deserves full marks. And the next novel picks things up again properly.
Show Less
LibraryThing member savageknight
Anne spends 3 years as the Principal of Summerside and we learn of all the goings-on in her life through the letters she writes to her fiance, Gilbert.

As I've discovered, all things "Anne" really do work out for the best and no situation - regardless of how bad it seems at first, will eventually
Show More
work out. To that end, I find myself questioning why I continue to read these books. Why do I find them so entertaining? They are so "polyanna" that there is little in the way of true drama because everything does come up roses.

The only answer I have is that I have grown quite fond of the character. She is a dreamer, a believer of fantasy and imagination, and someone who always looks to the positives of life. These are all things that are quite dear to me as well. On top of that, I have to admit that we are introduced to a large array of characters each with their own little quirks that makes them "real" and interesting to read.

I've often remarked that reading these "Anne" books was like catching up with an old friend. The format of this particular novel is very much like that. A comforting read.
Show Less
LibraryThing member tjsjohanna
Unlike some of the other books in the "Anne" series, this one doesn't have a lot of plot line. Anne is spending her years of engagement teaching and serving as principal of a private high school. This book is a combination of letters to Gilbert and various narratives of funny and touching things
Show More
that happen to Anne during those three years - many of Ms. Montgomery's short stories find themselves woven into the narrative. I especially liked the story of Little Elizabeth - she reminded me a bit of Paul from "Anne of Avonlea" and I would have liked to hear more about Elizabeth. And I loved Rebecca Dew! While there isn't a major plot turn or climax at the end, this book is a lot like life - a series of small adventures and happenings that color the everyday thread of a contented life.
Show Less
LibraryThing member milti
This is the boring-est of the books, probably because it has so little actual romance and is mostly just letters.:D
LibraryThing member amerynth
Anne of Windy Poplars, the fourth book in the Anne of Green Gables series tells the story of Ann's adventures as a teacher in Summerside during the three years prior to her marriage to Gilbert Blythe. I liked this book better than some of the other installments, but missed hearing about the
Show More
familiar characters of Prince Edward Island, since this book mostly takes place away from Anne's home. As always, L.M. Montgomery has populated her book with memorable and interesting characters -- and the stories are so realistic they seem true to life. The is just another book in a wonderful series.
Show Less
LibraryThing member booksandwine
Anne of Windy Poplars was a delight to read. The book is comprised of letters written by Anne and third-person narrative. As with the other Anne books, we meet some wonderful new characters and become reaquainted with old ones. There is a hilarious dinner scene which definately made me laugh out
Show More
loud in public.
Show Less
LibraryThing member ThorneStaff
While Gilbert finishes medical school, Anne is invited to be the principal of a high school in Summerside. She faces one seemingly insurmountable problem immediately: the Pringles, a venerable and large family. The Pringles have influence over all that happens in the town, and they are upset
Show More
because Anne was not their first choice; a cousin of theirs was.

But she has allies in the kindly widows who allow her to board, Aunt Chatty and Aunt Kate, along with Rebecca Dew, the housekeeper. What follows is a series of vignettes about Anne's dealings with the school and the people of the town, but a common thread goes throughout: her fate is largely determined by the Pringles, and Anne is just as determined to win them over. Part of "Anne of Windy Poplars" consists of Anne's letters to Gilbert, and the author judiciously omits the more sentimental passages of the letters.

This book was written seventh in the series of eight books, so it definitely seems to lose a little continuity, and might rightly be considered a companion piece rather than book five of the series. And it is probably not Ms. Montgomery's best work in the Anne of Green Gables series, though it may fit in better with her other lesser-known collections of short stories. It seems to drag in parts, and I kept wanting to skip through to the "good" sections. However, I faithfully read through it and was glad to be done and on to the next book, "Anne's House of Dreams", that has better "flow".
Show Less
LibraryThing member susanbevans
Although Anne of Windy Poplars is the fourth book chronologically in the Anne of Green Gables series, it was actually the seventh book L.M. Montgomery wrote for the series. Anne of Windy Poplars is an epistolary novel, telling the story of the years between the time Anne Shirley graduated from
Show More
college and the time she finally marries Gilbert Blythe. During this time Anne is living at Windy Poplars with two elderly widows, and working as the principal of Summerside High School. The letters that make up the bulk of the novel are from Anne to her fiancé.

Anne of Windy Poplars almost surpasses Anne of Green Gables for me. Through Anne's writing, Montgomery really has a chance to illustrate just what a special young woman Anne is. She is a delightful character to read, intelligent and witty with real gumption. Even in the face of overwhelming negativity Anne refuses to back down. She is determined to persevere against all odds, and in the end manages to change every life she touches. This is Anne as I will always think of her - a spirited woman whose heart bursts with love and poetry.

As always, Montgomery seems to cast an even more eccentric set of characters in Anne of Windy Poplars. She has such a way with creating characters that seem to leap off the page. From Aunt Kate and Aunt Chatty at Windy Poplars, to characters like Jen Pringle (and the whole Pringle clan,) Katherine Brooke, Pauline Gibson, and Cousin Ernestine - Montgomery has taken great care to invent highly readable and believable people to live in Anne's world. These are people full of faults but with a great capacity for growth - they just need a little Anne Shirley in their lives!

Anne of Windy Poplars enhances Anne's story beautifully. By using her charming letters to Gilbert, the reader gets to see things through Anne's own eyes. Anne is a gifted writer, as is L.M. Montgomery, obviously. This series of books offers the reader a lyrical look into the life of one of literature's most entertaining heroines. I highly recommend reading it straight through!
Show Less
LibraryThing member D.Holliman
Montgomery always amazes me by how life like her characters are, her descriptions of them and Anne's opinion of them always makes me feel like I am meeting a new person. Also the characters could stand on their own, without having the main character. In this book we find Anne fighting to be
Show More
accepted as a school principal/teacher in a small town that is full of Pringles and half Pringles. Through her challenges we meet a whole new cast of characters. My favorite new character that we meet in this book is Katherine Brooke. Montgomery shows through her character of Katherine that you can never tell why people are the way they are without digging deeper and really trying hard to get to know them. Sometimes those with the prickliest skin, tend to have the softest heart and/or have been truly hurt and neglected. I like how through Anne, Montgomery encourages her readers to get out and meet new people, and that you can never really tell about a person until you talk with them.
Show Less
LibraryThing member DeltaQueen50
Anne of Windy Poplars is the fourth book in the Anne series, and this one is told in epistolary style as Anne has become the principal of Summerside High School and is writing letters to her finance Gilbert while he is in medical school. This book covers the three years that the two have to wait
Show More
until Gilbert becomes a doctor and they are able to marry.

Windy Poplars is the home that Annie is boarding in. Owned by two widows and run by a salt-of-the-earth housekeeper, Anne arrives like a breath of spring air. Along with these women, Anne makes other friends in and around Summerside and is able in her own winning way to bring happiness and change into many lives. This book comes to an end as Anne returns home to Green Gables knowing in a very short while she will finally become Mrs. Gilbert Blyth.

I was a little disappointed with Anne of Windy Poplars as much of the story felt repetitious and Anne seemed a little too perfect. I missed the Anne that often make mistakes and learned life lessons from her errors. I found the author seemed more moralistic and a little preach-y in this volume. I also missed the great descriptive writing about the passing of the seasons that I have enjoyed in the previous three volumes. I note that this book is often the one missing from boxed sets of the Anne of Green Gables series, and I also know that although it is the fourth book in chronological order, it was actually the seventh one to be published.
Show Less
LibraryThing member neverlistless
the next saga of Anne's life. She's moved into a home by the name of Windy Poplars on Spook's Lane with two old widows and a helper. She's a principal at the high school while Gilbert is away at medical school and they write letters to each other and pine away. Montgomery introduces us to another
Show More
set of interesting characters - it's such good fun.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Magadri
For me this book is the beginning of the end of the series. I loved the first few books, but this book was a little boring and it doesn't get any better.
LibraryThing member rainbowdarling
When I read this at first as a young teen, I didn't like it. I would skip it when I re-read the series. After I re-read the whole series (without skipping this one) about five years ago, though, I began to wonder exactly why I hadn't liked it. The novel provides interesting pictures into the lives
Show More
of others as Anne comes into contact with them. The epistolary portions are also pleasant as they really feel as if they were written by Anne herself and as such, I felt more bonded to her than I had before. There are such rich "side-"characters in this that I would rank it among my favorites. It is sweet and poignant, and showcases the epistolary style that I don't think Montgomery used nearly enough.
Show Less
LibraryThing member inkstained
This is one of my favorites in Montgomery's body of work, and in particular in this series. This novel is also published as "Anne of Windy Willows" in the UK. It was one of the last ones of the series written, but the fourth one in the series chronologically. It's easy to tell it was written later
Show More
in her writing career because the voice and writing quality are much more polished. The plotting is tighter, and it has to be to get Anne through this difficult period. This is the time of life that, in the era this takes place, is very difficult for women. It's after graduation from college, working, but before marriage. Considering most women didn't attend college in Anne's day, and that it was highly controversial for them to do so, I'm not at all surprised that Montgomery left this chapter of Anne's life until later to write. She pulled it off with grace, finesse, and a good dose of humor.
Show Less
LibraryThing member norabelle414
This book was not as tedious as I thought it would be, and I zipped along pretty quickly. All of Anne's "adventures" are starting to run together. How many cranky old ladies has she won over with her charm now? 30? 40? I believe she's going to get married in the next book so we'll see if that
Show More
changes things up a bit.
Show Less
LibraryThing member blbooks
First sentence: DEAREST: Isn't that an address! Did you ever hear anything so delicious? Windy Poplars is the name of my new home and I love it. I also love Spook's Lane, which has no legal existence. It should be Trent Street but it is never called Trent Street except on the rare occasions when it
Show More
is mentioned in the Weekly Courier . . . and then people look at each other and say, 'Where on earth is that?' Spook's Lane it is . . . although for what reason I cannot tell you. I have already asked Rebecca Dew about it, but all she can say is that it has always been Spook's Lane and there was some old yarn years ago of its being haunted. But she has never seen anything worse-looking than herself in it.

Premise/plot: Anne and Gilbert are engaged at last! But Gilbert still has three years of school to go, and, so Anne finds herself a job as principal of a school in Summerside. Anne of Windy Poplars gives us an intimate look at those three years. Much of the book provides glimpses into the letters Anne writes Gilbert. But there are some traditional chapters as well.

My thoughts: Anne of Windy Poplars is such a delightful (late) addition to the Anne series by L.M. Montgomery. I love, love, love it. Even if Gilbert himself is absent. (We only see her letters to him, never his letters to her.)

This book showcases what Montgomery does BEST: bring her characters to life. It doesn't seem to matter if we spend two paragraphs with a character or two chapters. I CARE about every character she introduces.

Some of the characters we meet in this one: Aunt Kate, Aunt Chatty, Rebecca Dew, Dusty Miller (cats count as characters, right?!), Little Elizabeth, Nora Nelson, Jim Wilcox, Esme Taylor, Dr. Lennox Carter, Cyrus Taylor, Teddy Armstrong, Lewis Allen, Katherine Brooke, Mrs. Adoniram Gibson and Pauline, Cousin Ernestine Bugle, Jarvis Morrow, Dovie Westcott, Frank Westcott.

Favorite quotes:

I have a scratchy pen and I can't write love-letters with a scratchy pen...or a sharp pen...or a stub pen. So you'll only get that kind of letter from me when I have exactly the right kind of pen.

You know I've always been one to whom adventures come unsought. I just seem to attract them, as it were.

School begins tomorrow. I shall have to teach geometry! Surely that can't be any worse than learning it.

Isn't it queer that the things we writhe over at night are seldom wicked things? Just humiliating ones.

I don't like reading about martyrs because they always make me feel petty and ashamed...ashamed to admit I hate to get out of bed on frosty mornings and shrink from a visit to the dentist!

Nobody is ever too old to dream. And dreams never grow old.

I said drenched and I mean drenched.

Oh, no, babies are never common," said Anne, bringing a bowl of water for Mrs. Gibson's roses. "Every one is a miracle."

It seems so strange to read over the stories of those old wars...things that can never happen again. I don't suppose any of us will ever have more than an academic interest in 'battles long ago.' It's impossible to think of Canada ever being at war again. I am so thankful that phase of history is over.

Nobody is ever too old to wear just what she wants to wear. You wouldn't want to wear it if you were too old.
Show Less
LibraryThing member BookConcierge
Anne Shirley has graduated from college and has signed on as Principal of a school in Summerside, across the island from her beloved Green Gables. Once again she needs to make friends, and convert the potential enemies of the town who begrudge this young woman her responsible position.

I love Anne
Show More
– who wouldn’t, she’s so optimistic, kind and straightforward. I was pleased to see that the book opens as a letter from Anne to Gilbert, and I was looking forward to an epistolary novel. However, Montgomery interspersed several chapters written in third-person narrative. I understand that what she described in those sections would be difficult to convey in a letter format, but I felt that the switching back and forth in style detracted from the book.

I think I may have reached my limit with this series. Book four felt repetitive and formulaic to me, as if I were marking time along with Anne until she reunites with Gilbert and her life story really moves forward. I can’t bring myself to rate it lower than 3 stars, however, because I like the character so much, and I did enjoy her efforts at matchmaking.
Show Less
LibraryThing member kaulsu
Like all the other Anne books: nothing momentous happens; no incredible characters appear; Anne is not saintly, nor is she a rapscallion. But there is something comfortable in reading a simple tale of a time very unlike our own.

In this book, Anne is appointed "principle" of a school for a
Show More
three-year contract. At the end of three years, it is to be assumed she will marry her "Gilbert."
Show Less
LibraryThing member DrFuriosa
This is a charming chronicle of Anne's three years of principalship before she marries. Of all the faerie-like children she writes, Elizabeth is easily the most charming and winsome. And of course, Rebecca Dew is a most enjoyable secondary character.
LibraryThing member nancynova
4th in the series, and not always included in anthologies. In this one, most of Anne's writing is in the form of letters to her fiance, Gilbert, as she describes her three years as a teacher/principal in Summerside PEI, and the townfolk.


Original language


Original publication date

1996 (Nouvelle édition française, Presses de la Cité)

Physical description

288 p.; 6.94 inches


0553213164 / 9780553213164


Page: 1.0842 seconds