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L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals

L.M. Montgomery's Complete Journals: The Ontario Years 1911–1917
L.M. Montgomery's Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1922-1925
L.M. Montgomery's Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1926–1929
Cover art for L.M. Montgomery's Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1930-1933
Cover art for The Diary of Charles Macneill, Farmer, 1892–1896

L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals is a multi-volume edition of L.M. Montgomery’s journal entries dated 1911 to 1942. Under the editorship of Jen Rubio, who also provides prefatory material and notes to each volume, this work has appeared in five volumes to date (as well as one related title) published by Rock’s Mills Press since 2016.

These volumes supplement The Selected Journals of L.M. Montgomery (1985–2004), a five-volume set edited by Mary Rubio and Elizabeth Waterston, who at the time had been required to abridge Montgomery’s journal text by as much as fifty per cent. They have been preceded by The Complete Journals of L.M. Montgomery (2 vols., 2012–2013), also edited by Mary Henley Rubio and Elizabeth Hillman Waterston.

In chronological order: The Ontario Years, 1911–1917 (2016) | The Ontario Years, 1918–1921 (2017) | The Ontario Years, 1922–1925 (2018) | The Ontario Years, 1926–1929 (2017) | The Ontario Years, 1930–1933 (2019)

Related title: The Diary of Charles Macneill, Farmer, 1892–1896 (2018)

The Ontario Years, 1911–1917 (2016)

L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1911–1917 is an unabridged and annotated edition of L.M. Montgomery’s journal entries dated 2 July 1911 to 28 December 1917, when Montgomery was between the ages of thirty-six and forty-three, and they record her honeymoon in England and Scotland and her early years in Leaskdale, Ontario. It features a preface by Jonathan F. Vance as well as notes by the volume editor. It was published as a trade paperback by Rock’s Mills Press in June 2016.

Citation: Montgomery, L.M. L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1911–1917. Edited by Jen Rubio. [Oakville, ON]: Rock’s Mills Press, 2016.

Format Details: Trade paperback, 6” × 9”, x + 358 pp., ISBN 978-1-77244-022-5

Publisher’s Listing: https://rocksmillspress.com/shop/ols/products/lm-montgomerys-complete-journals-the-ontario-years-1911-1917

Synopsis

The years following L.M. Montgomery’s departure from Prince Edward Island were among the most eventful of her life. She travelled in England and Scotland on her honeymoon; she began her new role of minister’s wife in Leaskdale, Ontario; she gave birth three times; and, in August 1914, she watched Canada go to war.

The original publication of Montgomery’s journals in 1987 contained only a selection of her entries. Published now for the first time ever is the full record from 1911 to 1917, a wonderful account of the small and the large, the tragic and the funny. She delights in the birth of her first son. A second baby, however, is stillborn on the eve of war. By the time her third is born, war has become a disquieting reality, with local boys dying overseas.

This edition includes all of Montgomery’s original photographs, many of which have never been published. The hundreds of annotations, completely new and exclusive to this edition, incorporate the most up-to-date historical thinking. A new preface by historian Jonathan F. Vance is lively and insightful.

Contents

Preface / Jonathan F. Vance (v–vii)

1911 (1–62)

1912 (63–95)

1913 (96–144)

1914 (145–75)

1915 (176–208)

1916 (209–67)

1917 (268–335)

Acknowledgements (356)

Index (358–45)

Index of Photography (346–58)

Reviews

Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 42, no. 2 (Summer 2017): 258–62 (Barbara Carman Garner). https://doi.org/10.1353/chq.2017.0025.

Literary Review of Canada (Toronto), July–August 2017, 26–27 (Carole Gerson, “Maud’s Darkening Gables”). https://reviewcanada.ca/magazine/2017/07/mauds-darkening-gables/.

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The Ontario Years, 1918–1921 (2017)

L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1918–1921 is an unabridged and annotated edition of L.M. Montgomery’s journal entries dated 5 January 1918 to 29 December 1921, when Montgomery was between the ages of forty-three and forty-seven and living in Leaskdale, Ontario. It features an introduction by Elizabeth Rollins Epperly as well as notes by the volume editor. It was published as a trade paperback by Rock’s Mills Press in May 2017.

Citation: Montgomery, L.M. L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1918–1921. Edited by Jen Rubio. [Oakville, ON]: Rock’s Mills Press, 2017.

Format Details: Trade paperback, 6” × 9”, xiv + 379 pp., ISBN 978-1-77244-066-9

Publisher’s Listing: https://rocksmillspress.com/shop/ols/products/lm-montgomerys-complete-journals-the-ontario-years-1918-1921

Synopsis

“Have you heard the news?” L.M. Montgomery records asking her husband Ewan as he arrived home on October 6, 1918, “hoping like a child that he hadn’t, so that I would be the first to tell him.” World War I had ended.

Montgomery’s words reflect the relief felt across the world as the war drew to a close. Her own life, however, did not relax as she might have hoped; rather, a series of unexpected events were about to unfold. Elizabeth Rollins Epperly observes in her introduction that Montgomery’s journals are filled with moments of joy “suspended in a larger, often darker, story.” Here we read about Montgomery’s experiences with death, the spirit world, and insanity, among others. Her husband’s mental illness often makes for hair-raising reading.

Available here for the first time is the complete record of Montgomery’s life, a spellbinding account of the small and the large, the tragic and the humorous. Over 180 of Montgomery’s own photographs are here, many never before published. In addition to Professor Epperly’s fascinating introduction, this edition contains new notes with updated historical background.

Contents

Introduction / Elizabeth Rollins Epperly (v–xiii)

1918 (1–80)

1919 (81–224)

1920 (225–92)

1921 (293–361)

Acknowledgements (362)

Index (363–69)

Index of Photographs (370–79)

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The Ontario Years, 1926–1929 (2017)

L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1926–1929 is an unabridged and annotated edition of L.M. Montgomery’s journal entries dated 1 January 1926 to 30 December 1929, when Montgomery was between the ages of fifty-one and fifty-five while living in Leaskdale and Norval, Ontario. Featuring an introduction and notes by the volume editor, the book was published as a trade paperback by Rock’s Mills Press in May 2017.

Citation: Montgomery, L.M. L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1926–1929. Edited by Jen Rubio. [Oakville, ON]: Rock’s Mills Press, 2017.

Format Details: Trade paperback, 6” × 9”, x + 333 pp., ISBN 978-1-77244-080-5

Publisher’s Listing: https://rocksmillspress.com/shop/ols/products/lm-montgomerys-complete-journals-the-ontario-years-1926-1929

Synopsis

“I love Norval as I have loved no other place since Cavendish.” –from the Journals, May 26, 1927

L.M. Montgomery’s relocation in 1926 to Norval, Ontario—a village of striking natural beauty located on the Credit River—furnished her life with a bright new texture. She had lived 15 years in the small farming community of Leaskdale, Ontario, where she experienced her full share of highs and lows.

Although Montgomery remained busy in Norval, working almost incessantly as an author, mother, and minister’s wife, she found that her new home had its own special, and often very pleasing, flavour. Her connection to the “spirit of place” enabled her to record moments of peace and reflection in the “Garden of the Wild Gods,” as she described it—as well as the occasional “bark at the moon.”

Aware that the world was changing and that her own style of writing was not always sufficiently “edgy,” Montgomery’s commentary on the transformations of the world around her is infused with her characteristic wit and insight (“The mills of the gods grind slowly but they do pulverize,” she notes wryly in a journal entry of May 3, 1929). As social history of a rapidly changing post-war Canada, this new edition of Montgomery’s journals offers fascinating insights. Montgomery’s personal life is also intriguing. This new edition contains over 200 of Montgomery’s own photographs, many never before published. Editor Jen Rubio has provided hundreds of notes original to this edition as well as a new introduction.

Contents

Introduction / Jen Rubio (v–x)

1926 (3–102)

1927 (103–95)

1928 (196–245)

1929 (246–316)

Acknowledgements (317)

Index (318–22)

Index of Photographs (323–33)

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The Diary of Charles Macneill, Farmer, 1892–1896 (2018)

The Diary of Charles Macneill, Farmer, 1892–1896 contains the full text of a farm diary written by L.M. Montgomery’s distant relative Charles Macneill between 1892 and 1898 and transcribed by Montgomery into her handwritten journal in 1925. Featuring Montgomery’s original commentary on the diary (excerpted from L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1922–1925) as well as a preface by Jen Rubio, the book was published by Rock’s Mills Press as a trade paperback in May 2018.

Citation: Macneill, Charles, and L.M. Montgomery. The Diary of Charles Macneill, Farmer, 1892–1896. [Oakville, ON]: Rock’s Mills Press, 2018.

Format Details: Trade paperback, 6” × 9”, viii + 105 pp., ISBN 978-1-7724-4139-0

Publisher’s Listing: https://rocksmillspress.com/shop/ols/products/the-diary-of-charles-macneill-farmer-1892-1896

Synopsis

Anne of Green Gables author L.M. Montgomery does a surprising thing in her handwritten journal of 1925: she transcribes the entire diary of PEI farmer Charles Macneill into her own work.

In an earlier journal entry dated August 4, 1923, Montgomery recounts how on a visit to PEI that year, a friend and cousin presented her with a unique  document:

Alec produced a “diary” his father had kept for several years and we read it together. I don’t think I ever read anything quite so delicious in my life. Charles Macneill was an odd sort of a man, whom as a child I always loved because he was so kind to children. . . . He inherited from his mother—his father was not one of “our” Macneills but his mother was—a queer streak of the Macneill literary knack. . . .

Montgomery is fascinated by this “artless” yet compelling diary. Published now for the first time is the full diary that she found so compelling, an atmospheric depiction of the rural Island setting found in her novels. Macneill’s diary, kept between 1892 and 1896, transports us to a time before wireless communication and industrial agriculture, where people were their own farmers, doctors, and veterinarians. As Montgomery copied out Macneill’s words, she wrote that the “sights and sounds of that old north shore farm” came back like the “voices of ghosts.” Also included in this edition is Montgomery’s commentary on the diary, where she situates her younger self in the diary’s world.

Her commentary is an exploration of her own unique “mind’s eye,” an exceptional ability to recall this past world with an almost overwhelming intensity.

Contents

Preface / Jen Rubio (vii–viii)

The Diary of Charles Macneill (1–82)

L.M. Montgomery’s Commentary on Charles Macneill’s Diary (83–104)

Index (105)

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The Ontario Years, 1922–1925 (2018)

L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1922–1925 is an unabridged and annotated edition of L.M. Montgomery’s journal entries dated 1 January 1922 to 31 December 1925, when Montgomery was between the ages of forty-seven and fifty-one and living in Leaskdale, Ontario. Featuring an introduction and notes by Jen Rubio, the book was published as a trade paperback by Rock’s Mills Press in May 2018.

Montgomery’s transcription in her journals of Charles Macneill’s farm diary, mostly omitted in this volume, appears, along with her commentary, in The Diary of Charles Macneill, Farmer, 1892–1896 (2018).

Citation: Montgomery, L.M. L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1922–1925. [Oakville, ON]: Rock’s Mills Press, 2018.

Format Details: Trade paperback, 6” × 9”, xvi + 449 pp., ISBN 978-1-7724-4113-8

Publisher’s Listing: https://rocksmillspress.com/shop/ols/products/lm-montgomerys-complete-journals-the-ontario-years-1922-1925

Synopsis

L.M. Montgomery’s last four years in Leaskdale were marked by a series of unpredictable, and often unmanageable, events. Her account of these events, as they often twisted in increasingly unexpected directions, makes for spellbinding reading.

From 1919, Montgomery’s life had been troubled by her husband’s recurring bouts of mental illness. During the years recounted here, his mood disturbances became profound: “I dare not remain here alone with him if he continues like this,” she writes at one particularly low point. Other events added more complications to an already entangled life. A spurious lawsuit brought by a local farmer (claiming an enlarged prostate gland had been caused by a car collision) divided the community; Montgomery’s description of the trial, before and after, is riveting. Communities across Ontario were also deeply divided by Church Union, which came to a head in 1925. Her occasional eyebrow-raising comments about members of other denominations remind us that she shared many of the biases of her time.

The first publication of Montgomery’s journals in 1987 contained only a selection of her entries. Published now for the first time is the complete record of her life from 1922 to 1925.

All of her original photographs are here, many of which have never been published before. This edition also contains carefully researched new notes, with updated historical background.

Contents

Preface / Jen Rubio (v–xi)

1922 (1–105)

1923 (106–91)

1924 (192–310)

1925 (311–435)

Acknowledgements (436)

Index (437–42)

Photo Index (443–49)

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The Ontario Years, 1930–1933 (2019)

L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1930–1933 is an unabridged and annotated edition of L.M. Montgomery’s journal entries dated 2 January 1930 to 29 December 1933, when Montgomery was between the ages of fifty-five and fifty-nine and living in Norval, Ontario. Featuring an introduction and notes by the volume editor, the book was published as a trade paperback by Rock’s Mills Press in July 2019.

Citation: Montgomery, L.M. L.M. Montgomery’s Complete Journals: The Ontario Years, 1930–1933. Edited by Jen Rubio. [Oakville, ON]: Rock’s Mills Press, 2019.

Format Details: Trade paperback, 6” × 9”, xiv + 371 pp., ISBN 978-1-7724-4175-8

Publisher’s Listing: https://rocksmillspress.com/shop/ols/products/lm-montgomerys-complete-journals-the-ontario-years-1930-1933

Synopsis

L.M. Montgomery’s journals speak of simple pleasures and deep joy, dogged worries and profound disappointments. The story of her life from 1930 to 1933 is as gripping as the earlier volumes published by Rock’s Mills Press.

This volume is different from earlier ones in a surprising way, however: “It has happened. It is too cruel and hideous and unexpected to write about. I have spent two days in hell. I cannot see how I am to go on living. . . . And I have had to keep up a face to the world when something in my soul was bleeding to death” (February 5, 1933).

The truth of this “cruel and hideous” event is, for a time, too difficult to commit to her journals; it casts a shadow of shame on Montgomery’s life for months. When she finally explains, it is page-turning material that gives a fascinating look into the hidden side of life in Ontario almost a century ago.

Montgomery also recounts other difficult situations facing her in those years, including attempts to help a slippery young man facing embezzlement charges and a younger woman’s obsessive crush on her. Over 100 of Montgomery’s own photographs are included, many never before published. This edition also includes an introduction, extensive notes, and an index of photography, all original to this edition.

Contents

Introduction: The Chapter L.M. Montgomery Could Not Write / Jen Rubio (vii–xiii)

1930 (1–103)

1931 (104–209)

1932 (210–294)

1933 (295–356)

Acknowledgements (357)

Index (359–65)

Index of Photography (366–71)

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Published on 27 February 2024; last updated on 1 March 2024. Please contact the site owner with additions, corrections, questions, and suggestions.