Friday, November 2, 2007

Anne of Green Gables

My first brush with Anne of Green Gables occurred when my uncle gave a lovely hard-bound book of the same to my older sister. My mother read the book aloud to the three of us girls that winter.

It seems as if it couldn't have been too long after that when the movie version was shown on the public broadcast station. We were all hooked, my youngest sister most of all. She became Anne.

I don't remember details from the early reading of Anne, but the movie became an important part of our lives. It is probably the most-watched movie in my collection, and the one I wouldn't ever want to part with. I feel as if Anne helped shape my childhood. My husband was 'given the privilege' of watching the movie with me before we were married. I'm not sure he would have been allowed into the family otherwise.

Guilt started creeping in when I realized how important Anne was in my life, and yet I had never read the book on my own. Determined to remedy said tragedy, I added Anne of Green Gables to my autumn intentional reading list. And I loved it. Absolutely. Loved. It. Don't go through life without meeting Anne. (Read the book(s) first if possible, but I highly recommend the movies Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea.)

pg. 77

"Saying one's prayers isn't exactly the same thing as praying," said Anne meditatively. "But I'm going to imagine that I'm the wind that is blowing up there in those tree tops. When I get tired of the trees I'll imagine I'm gently waving down here in the ferns--and then I'll fly over to Mrs. Lynde's garden and set the flowers dancing--and then I'll go with one great swoop over the clover field--and then I'll blow over the Lake of Shining Waters and ripple it all up into little sparkling waves. Oh, there's so much scope for imagination in the wind! So I'll not talk any more just now, Marilla."

"Thanks be to goodness for that," breathed Marilla in devout relief.

pg. 83

Marilla felt helplessly that all this should be sternly reproved, but she was hampered by the undeniable fact that some of the things Anne had said, especially the part about the minister's sermons and Mr. Bell's prayers, were what she herself had really thought deep down in her heart for years, but had never given expression to. It almost seemed to her that those secret, unuttered, critical thoughts had suddenly taken visible and accusing shape and form in the person of this outspoken morsel of neglected humanity.

pg. 286

"That Anne-girl improves all the time," she said. "I get tired of other girls--there is such a provoking and eternal sameness about them. Anne has as many shades as a rainbow and every shade is the prettiest while it lasts. I don't know that she is as amusing as she was when she was a child, but she makes me love her and I like people who make me love them. It saves me so much trouble in making myself love them."

pg. 287

But Anne, with her elbows on the window sill, her soft cheek laid against her clasped hands, and her eyes filled with visions, looked out unheedingly across city roof and spire to that glorious dome of sunset sky and wove her dreams of a possible future from the golden tissue of youth's own optimism. All the Beyond was hers with its possibilities lurking rosily in the oncoming years--each year a rose of promise to be woven into an immortal chaplet.


Carrie said...

Anne is - and always will be - my favorite literary character of all time. I was glad my hair was red growing up. I merely bemoaned the fact that I wasn't named Anne. Not even my middle name!

So glad you took the time to read it. WHO would regret it!? =)

Mumsy said...

I love Anne. I used to watch the movies with my grandma when I was a little girl.

I've just been thinking about which classic I want to read next. Thanks for reminding me how much I love Anne. This is it!

Renee said...

I love these books as well. Hmm...maybe I should pick up one this fall as well!

Sarah at SmallWorld said...

Anne has been on my reading list for years and years. I am surprised at how many women my age (40-ish) have never read it. I wonder if it was just not in fashion then? We all read Judy Blume and Little House, but not Anne....

Staci Eastin said...

I'm with Sarah. I'm 35, and somehow missed all these books growing up. I read through the Little House books several times, and read all of Judy Blume, too.

I have a copy somewhere. I might have to add it to my teetering stack.

Nikki in Niagara said...

Oh, I so totally agree with everything you said. I want to re-read some Anne this next year.