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Lucy Maude Montgomery's books are usually found in the children's section and children can and do gain immense pleasure from reading and re-reading them. As I have grown older, I found that I have outgrown categories such as children's or women's books. I think such categories can and do hide a books true merit.
Rilla of Ingleside is the conclusion of the stories begun in Rainbow Valley. As I wrote the previous sentence, I realized that it wasn'true. LM Montgomery wrote only one book during her life. It is a book of stories of and about the people of the Maritime Provinces of Canada and in particular, Prince Edward Island. At its core, Rilla is a romance, a very powerful and moving romance set against the background of World War I and oddly enough includes only two kisses. One kiss was bestowed by Rilla a silly empty headed girl and the second by Rilla the woman. I add, a woman worth having and loving. In between, the politics, privations, sacrifices and motivations of individuals and nations become understandable. One can gain an insight into the lives of ordinary people and their extraordinary accomplishments; most important of all, their quiet resolute courage both on the battlefield and in the kitchens, parlors and churches. Rilla is a story about how World War I changed the world forever and affects us and our attitudes today. It is a book older children will love as well as adults who have gown up enough.
The narrator, Anna Fields has a gift and leads us on through these stories with her clear pleasant voice as she assumes the identity of widely varying characters.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
Rilla, Anne's most charming child, is on the brink of becoming a woman, full of romantic hopes and dreams, when a far-off war intervenes and changes her life forever. Suddenly, everything familiar is upended, and she is faced with a world unlike any she has ever imagined, even in dear Glen St. Mary, where she has lived all her life. Growing up will require unexpected skills, but Rilla finds her path, laying aside her idle ways as she develops her strengths and selflessly throws herself into tasks far beyond her years. Her joyful nature is tested but not overcome, as she weaves her life with strands familiar as well as unexpected.
I have purchased all three of the audiobooks of this title, and was extremely disappointed with the other two. Although this book is a favorite, the other narrators just ruined it for me. Anna Fields' narration makes this version the only one worth the listen.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful