A Tangled Web

A Tangled Web is L.M. Montgomery’s eighteenth book, first published in October 1931 by McClelland and Stewart (Toronto) and the Frederick A. Stokes Company (New York). The book begins when Aunt Becky Dark, matriarch of the extended Dark-Penhallow clan, gathers her numerous family members together before her death to announce her plans for the inheritance of an ugly but much coveted jug; after her death, a number of characters make abrupt changes in their lives and their habits in the hopes of being chosen as the jug’s new owner. This novel was preceded by Magic for Marigold (1929) and followed by Pat of Silver Bush (1933).

A Tangled Web was published in the United Kingdom under the title Aunt Becky Began It.


my good friends
Mr. and Mrs. Fred W. Wright
in memory of
a certain week of laughter


I. Aunt Becky’s Levee

II. Wheels within Wheels

III. Midsummer Madness

IV. The Moving Finger

V. Blindly Wise

VI. Finally, Brethren

Reviews of A Tangled Web / Aunt Becky Began It (26)

Boston Herald, 19 September 1931, 14.

Trenton (NJ) Times-Advertiser, 20 September 1931, Part 3, 2 (“Aunt Becky’s Jug”).

Wisconsin Library Bulletin (Madison), October 1931, 223.

Jacksonville (IL) Journal, 8 October 1931 (“Hate and Love—Twins?”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 358.

Globe (Toronto), 10 October 1931, 8 (M.B. McC, “A Montgomery Novel”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 359. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 308–9.

Toronto Telegram, 17 October 1931, 45. Scrapbook of Reviews, 358. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 313–14 (as “[A Robust and Versatile Clan Saga]”).

Portland (ME) News, 23 October 1931. Scrapbook of Reviews, 357.

Toronto Daily Star, 24 October 1931, 4 (“L.M. Montgomery Writes Humoresque”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 360. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 309–10.

Gazette (Montreal), 31 October 1931, 20 (“Another Montgomery Book”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 365. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 310.

New York Herald Tribune Books, 1 November 1931, Section 11, 23.

Lethbridge Daily Herald, 13 November 1931, 11.

News Chronicle (London), 23 November 1931 (“Family Forest”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 357.

Church of England Newspaper (London), 4 December 1931. Scrapbook of Reviews, 362. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 310–11 (as “[A Capital Tale]”).

The New Outlook (Toronto), 9 December 1931, 1171.

Punch, or the London Charivari (London), 9 December 1931, 644 (“United Families”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 366. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 311.

Globe (Toronto), 12 December 1931, 19.

New York Times Book Review, 20 December 1931, 9, 19 (“A Homely Chronicle”).

Boston Evening Transcript, 22 December 1931. Scrapbook of Reviews, 361.

Springfield (MA) Daily Republican, 27 December 1931, 7E (“‘A Tangled Web’ in Island Families”).

Springfield (MA) Daily Republican, 31 December 1931, 8.

The Canadian Bookman (Toronto), January 1932, 8–9 (A.S. Marquis). Scrapbook of Reviews, 396. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 311–12 (as “[So Utterly Lacking in Kindliness]”).

Sydney Church Standard (Australia), 8 January 1932 (M.B.). Scrapbook of Reviews, 363–64.

Public Ledger (Philadelphia), 9 January 1932. Scrapbook of Reviews, 362.

Times Literary Supplement (London), 14 January 1932, 30. Scrapbook of Reviews, 362. The L.M. Montgomery Reader, 3: 312–13 (as “[No Little Skill]”).

Sydney Mail (Australia), 20 January 1932, 19 (“Humour and Romance”).

Natal Mercury (Durban, South Africa), 25 January 1932 (“Character Study”). Scrapbook of Reviews, 370.

Daily Capital News and Post-Tribune (Jefferson City, MO), 23 July 1933, 13A.