I did not read any of the Anne books when I was a kid. However, when Amazon offered the entire collection as a special for only $1.99, challenged myse...moreI did not read any of the Anne books when I was a kid. However, when Amazon offered the entire collection as a special for only $1.99, challenged myself to read all 11 books of the series. I'm having second thoughts, though I will try to meet my goal. This is the fifth book in the Anne of Green Gables saga. There are 6 more that follow Anne as she grows up, marries, and raises her family. These books were enormously popular with children for many years, and I am struggling to figure out why. While I am allowing for the time in which these books were written -- the early 1900s -- and the writing style is wordy and slow, I am getting impatient with the unevenness of the writing. One passage may be terse to the point that it could have easily been left out, then the next is filled with long, overblown descriptions with adjectives used in strange ways: would one really say "the glib ice" to describe a frozen river? I am also struck by how shallow and judgmental the main characters are, how silly and fatuous their lives are. There are none I would not like to either shake or slap at one point or another! Adding to my frustration with the inhabitants of these books is how the interesting characters are given short shrift, spoken about in snide terms, just thrown in as if to give the principals topics for gossip. There is, buried between the lines, no small amount of classism and religious prejudices, and once or twice an expression thrown in that is clearly anti-Semitic. The closest these characters get to being overtly racist is when they speak derogatorily of the French living among them, though I suppose that's because there is just no opportunity for the author to have gone any deeper than that. (Spoke too soon! A character in the next book actually says "I work like a n....r" Yes, I know it's a phrase that was acceptable at the time, uttered by an uneducated, unsophisticated character, but I found it jarring.)
Eleven books! The first was the best of the bunch; I am now on number 6, "Rainbow Valley," and we'll see if my resolve to plow through to the end can hold up.
I've read all the books in this set may times over. I've also read other Wilder books, as well as those by her daughter, Rose. Love them all!
From Wiki...moreI've read all the books in this set may times over. I've also read other Wilder books, as well as those by her daughter, Rose. Love them all!
From Wikipedia: Little House in the Big Woods (1932) Farmer Boy (1933) - about her husband's childhood on a farm in New York Little House on the Prairie (1935) On the Banks of Plum Creek (1937), a Newbery Honor book By the Shores of Silver Lake (1939), a Newbery Honor book The Long Winter (1940), a Newbery Honor book Little Town on the Prairie (1941), a Newbery Honor book These Happy Golden Years (1943), a Newbery Honor book On the Way Home (1962, published posthumously) - a diary of the Wilders' move from de Smet to Mansfield, Missouri, edited and added to by Rose Wilder Lane. The First Four Years (1971, published posthumously) West from Home (1974, published posthumously) - Wilder's letters to Almanzo while visiting Lane in San Francisco in 1915 The Road Back (Part of A Little House Traveler: Writings from Laura Ingalls Wilder's Journeys Across America, highlighting Laura's previously unpublished record of a 1931 trip with Almanzo to De Smet, South Dakota, and the Black Hills) A Little House Sampler, with RoseWilder Lane, edited by William Anderson Farm Journalist : Writings from the Ozarks Writings to Young Women (Volume One: On Wisdom and Virtues, Volume Two: On Life As a Pioneer Woman, Volume Three: As Told By Her Family, Friends, and Neighbors) A Little House Reader: A Collection of Writings Laura Ingalls Wilder & RoseWilder Lane (Letters exchanged by Laura and Rose) Little House in the Ozarks: The Rediscovered Writings Laura's Album (A Remembrance Scrapbook of Laura Ingalls Wilder, edited by William Anderson) (less)
I know I'm in a minority on this, but I see an abusive relationship here! The tree is a doormat, and the boy just keeps taking and taking, giving noth...moreI know I'm in a minority on this, but I see an abusive relationship here! The tree is a doormat, and the boy just keeps taking and taking, giving nothing back. Too bad, because I like Silverstein. I'm not sure what lesson a child is supposed to get from this.
This should be required reading for new parents. It seems that this current generation wants to protect their children from every kind of failure. Thi...moreThis should be required reading for new parents. It seems that this current generation wants to protect their children from every kind of failure. This book, while encouraging, also lets kids know that they won't always be the best, that there will be failures, that life isn't always all fun and games. It's OK to fail, it's OK to be down, as long as you pick yourself up and continue the journey. You never learn to get back up unless you fall once in a while.(less)