For Christmas, my very thoughtful husband gifted me with "The Blythes are Quoted," the last manuscript of L.M. Montgomery. This is the ninth and final book in the "Anne of Green Gables" series, a book I first read when I was ten years old. "The Blythes are Quoted" was released last year only in Canada. Brandon tracked it down and gave it to me as a Christmas/Housewarming gift. He wrote a beautiful introduction inside the book, which of course, made me cry.
Because it has been nearly 20 years since I first read "Anne of Green Gables" I decided that it might be best if I reread the series before reading the final book. Last week I dug out my well loved copy that I have had saved since I was ten years old (I have always had this romantic idea that I would save my favorite books for a future daughter to read). The bookstore sticker on the back says it was purchased in 1992 and it cost $2.95! You can't even buy a magazine for that cheap these days!
So last week I opened the pages to read again of my childhood heroine. I breathed in the smell of weathered pages and relaxed into the familiarity of the stories of Anne. I am reliving her passion, her joy, her imagination, her perspective on life. She is a fictional character I wish I knew in real life, a young girl unwavering in her beliefs. I am reminded why this mischevious redhead captured my heart when I was a young girl, and now with four years of teaching behind me, I know that I would have loved to have had a student like her in my classroom.
I am 27 years old and I can remember details and stories about Anne more clearly than I can remember what I ate yesterday.
Isn't it strange the way that literature can move us so deeply? Perhaps this is why we keep reading. Although the internet and technology has changed the way we live dramatically, we continue to read as people have done for generations and generations. Some people have made the techy move to the Kindle, but I think most readers are traditionalists, preferring the comfort of a printed book.
Rereading "Anne of Green Gables" comforts me. It reconnects thoughts and feelings deep within me. I know that it is a book that I will read again later in my life. It is a simple book, written for those with a reading level much lower than my own, but in its simplicity I am happy, I remember youth, and I see life again through the eyes of youth, optimism and beauty.
What are the books that you have read over and over again? Who are the characters you love?