October 10, 2015

Return to Green Gables: Non-fiction Reads

"I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers", as Anne Shirley once said. And this October, more than any other, my heart is gladder than glad to be bringing you Return to Green Gables! Rachel of Hello Chelly, Hannah of So Obsessed With & I have been scheming about this event for ages, and it's such a thrill to finally be able to share it with all of you. Be sure to make the rounds on all three of our blogs for the rest of the week in order to see all our posts, each and every single one inspired by or tribute to the classic Anne of Green Gables.

I'm quite bereft that we've come to the end of this wonderful week-long celebration for Anne of Green Gables! It has been the loveliest of experiences, in no small part due to the excellent partnership between myself and two of my "kindred spirits", as Anne would call them. I really hope that you all have enjoyed revisiting Green Gables with us. If you've missed any posts, they'll be listed down below for easy reference.

For this last post, we are each going to be sharing book recommendations! Rachel will talk about fiction, Hannah will feature other Montgomery reads and I, well, I will be focusing on the wealth of non-fiction offerings. Hannah actually has such a great collection of them that most of these are her recommendations; I definitely see a few that I'm going to need to check out for myself too.

On L.M. Montgomery

1. Lucy Maud Montgomery Album (Kevin McCabe + Alexandra Heilbron) - I love that this one is a collection of a variety of memorabilia - photographs, letters and clippings in particular. It sounds like it would paint a pretty darn good picture of who L.M. Montgomery was and what she was like, and I'm always curious to learn more about the writers behind my favorite reads.

2. Lucy Maud Montgomery: The Gift of Wings (Mary Henley Rubio) - Because I love the Anne of Green Gables series, I can't help being fascinated by the brilliant mind who brought it to life with her words. Hannah has read this one, and highly recommends it for those interested in learning more about the woman behind this series. It really does sound like a fascinating portrayal of various facets and times in Montgomery's life! I always find it interesting to see if an author's own experiences affect the stories they put out into the world.

3. The Complete Journals of L.M. Montgomery: The PEI Years, 1899-1900 (ed. Mary Henley Rubio + Elizabeth Hillman Waterston) - In the brief bio included on the L.M. Institute site, readers will learn that the author kept journals starting from the tender age of nine. As fans of her writing style and how she chooses to express herself, I think I would find it fairly interesting to read about her own life and experiences as narrated by the author's self. It would certainly feel that much more authentic to know that these thoughts are mostly hers, with just a slight bit of polish from others.

On Anne of Green Gables

1. Anne's World: A New Century of Anne of Green Gables (ed. Irene Gammel + Benjamin Lefebvre) - Being published over a century ago has not stopped Anne of Green Gables from remaining relevant and much beloved by millions of readers. This compilation of essays seeks to explore the connection and relevance of Montgomery's most famous series, relating it to the modern world in various aspects. I can think of nothing more fascinating, particular since I feel like there are so many ways Anne is still a significant literary work.

2. Anne Around the World: L.M. Montgomery and Her Classic (ed. Jane Ledwell + Jean Mitchell) - As a bit of an international citizen myself (born in the USA, raised in the Philippines), I always think it's fascinating when a piece of literature becomes a global phenomenon. Our cultures and histories influence our reception to stories as a reader. This compilation endeavors to explore Anne's relevance on a worldwide scale, and I'm curious to see how it differs from place to place.

3. Magic Island: The Fictions of L.M. Montgomery (Elizabeth Waterston) - The most interesting thing about this book, personally, is how it chronicles the parallels between Montgomery's life and the stories she wrote. I think it would be so cool to see the connection between them, which I've already mentioned as being something I like finding out about my favorites.

On Related Literature

1. From Little Houses to Little Women: Revisiting a Literary Childhood (Nancy McCabe) - Title alone, I already knew I wanted to read this one. (In fact, this entire section wins in titles, really.) McCabe takes the time to go on a literary journey as she revisits the childhood reads that shaped her life, and she includes Anne of Green Gables as one of them. It would be quite fun to come along for her journey, and I'm certain it would inspire me to think about mine.

2. The Heroine's Bookshelf: Life Lessons, from Jane Austen to Laura Ingalls Wilder (Erin Blakemore) - Again, it's the fantastic title that has me itching to read this one! But I also love the framework of Blakemore's approach - she's pairing up heroines with their standout quality. I think it would be absolutely compelling to revisit heroines in classic literature, and check out the characteristics that make them memorable, inspiring and relevant.

3. How to Be a Heroine (Samantha Ellis) - Memoir-slash-reflections and a winning title - how's that for a book you're bound to be curious about? I think it's quite cool that Ellis is writing a novel that shares about her own life experiences, and stacks them up comparatively with some of her favorite literary heroines. It's definitely a non-fiction read I'm really hoping to check out!

I hope you've discovered a title or two that interests you, particularly if you're a fan of the series and author the way that the three of us are! I definitely added a few books to my list to check out. And with that, we are officially at the end of Return to Green Gables. It's been a fun experience, colored with merriment and nostalgia. I'm so glad I teamed up with my beloved friends to make this happen. Hope you found our Return to Green Gables enchanting, and that you had as much fun as we did with all of the posts we've shared this week!


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