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Review 19: Chronicles of Avonlea

Cover art for Chronicles of Avonlea, published by L.C. Page and Company in 1912.

As I mentioned in my earlier blog post about reviews of Chronicles of Avonlea, these reviews were, on the whole, overwhelmingly positive in their praise for this collection of linked short stories. As the Mail and Empire noted in Toronto, “To say that one sketch was better than another would be to insinuate that the latter was not just as good as it possibly could be. Which would be insinuating something utterly untrue.”

Although there were only a few negative comments about the book, they are worth considering: the Louisville Post of Kentucky noted that, “From the standpoint of the unexacting, these are quite pretty stories, with enough and not too much of humor and of pathos. For the other sort—the fastidious, the exacting, the folk who know—there is very little here.” And as the Boston Evening Transcript added, “It is to be hoped . . . that there will be another ‘Anne’ story. There are other interesting people in Avonlea, but there is only one Anne.”

What do you think of these remarks? Do they still hold true for readers of the twenty-first century?

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1 Comment

  1. Marion Abbott

    I JUST finished re-reading these two books of ‘Avonlea stories’. I may or may not be dramatizing … ;0)

    I find the comment about ‘only one Anne’ interesting. Although I laughed and cried over several or more of the stories, there were really only one or two characters that truly stood out for me. Is it true? Are none of other Avonlea inhabitants as interesting as Anne? Or is it just because we only catch tiny glimpses of them that they seem to pale in comparison to Anne? Hmmmmmm … much to ponder!

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