Stephanie Ricker's Reviews > A Girl of the Limberlost

A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter
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Apr 16, 10

bookshelves: historical-fiction
Read in December, 2007, read count: 2

last read this book when I was 6, and I remember loving it then, even though I was mildly annoyed that it took me a whole week to read. This time it took me half as long, reading desultorily, so I feel somewhat vindicated of my 6-year-old-annoyance. The descriptions of nature absolutely enchanted me when I read it, and the more I think about it, this may have been what inspired me to really get into the outdoors. So much of what I read at that age made terribly strong impressions on me at the time. It's funny what things I remembered from this book...
I remember thinking the first time I read it how absolutely awful Elnora's mother was. Now, reading it again, I grew to like her by the end of the book, but I don't think my 6-year-old self ever did. I vividly remember a huge conflict over a white dress, which I almost thought I'd made up until I hit it around page 200. And I remember another huge conflict over the Yellow Emperor, which continued pretty much to the end of the book. I barely remember the guy in it at all...apparently 6-year-old-self was pretty uninterested in romance, which is a good thing. I remember the emotional impact the book had on me, but did I really understand what was going on with Mrs. Comstock and her husband? On the one hand, I think I did in a very vague way, but that's kind of disturbing. I was a scary child at 6...I think I would make myself uncomfortable now if I knew myself then. No kid should know that much! How did I get away with that? Even scarier thought, what would I be like now if I hadn't read so much? It's like some horrible alternate universe where I'm 5 times less mature and 10 times more annoying... Anyway, the book isn't the incredible feat of writing I thought it was when I was 6, but it was all so fresh and new to me then. The very idea of writing a book 450 pages long was astounding, and reading it was like discovering whole new worlds, even though the author was writing about my home state. I suppose Gene Stratton Porter was my first heroine; an Indiana authoress writing about twilight and violets and moths and the moon. It feels just like being home again, reading her descriptions, and it dredges up memories I didn't even know I had from evenings at home when I was little. Fascinating...
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