#AnneReadAlong2017 : The End of Anne

January 31, 2018

 

It’s so hard to believe that 9 months have passed. It feels like only yesterday that Jane @ Greenish Bookshelf and I were connecting to co-host the #AnneReadAlong2017. Over the last 9 months, we shared so much together and with those of you who participated in and followed our journey.

 

Over the course of the last 9 months, so much has been accomplished. We read all 8 books in the series, hosted two giveaways, posted books reviews and Top 5 lists, and written some additional posts to supplement and explore further our love of Anne Shirley Blythe. You can explore all the posts published by Jane and myself on my #AnneReadAlong2017 home page.

I learned so much from this experience. It’s been challenging for me to put into words all the wonder, awe, magic, and friendship I found by hosting #AnneReadAlong2017. If you haven’t read the entire Anne of Green Gables series yet, I strongly encourage you to do so. Montgomery’s writing is clever and to the point. I found myself laughing and crying along with (and sometimes at!) the characters. But really, watching Anne Shirley grow up, get married, and have children is miraculous. Watching someone’s life literally unfold in front of you is powerful. We followed Anne from her arrival at Green Gables and finding a family to watching her children grow up and go to war. So many amazing stories fall in between those moments, both happy and sad.

I will admit, there were challenging moments when I didn’t know if I would be able to finish reading the whole series. I either struggled with the writing, the content or the characters. By pushing through and reading every word, I learned a lot not only about myself but about Montgomery, too. She led a challenging life. Anne of Green Gables is only one small part of her collected works. If anything, I want to read more of Montgomery’s works and better understand this complicated woman, the struggles she endured, and how she managed to still inject so much magic and wonder into the world through her writing when she couldn’t always find it herself.

Okay. Enough of the sappy stuff. Let’s explore some of the highlights!


Anne of Green Gables Series Love Order

As you might imagine, I did not love all books equally. Each of them has their merits, and the whole series is completely worth it. But, there will always be favorites! Here is my order of Anne of Green Gables from most-loved-by-Jackie-B to least-loved-by-Jackie-B:

Anne of Green Gables (#1)
5 stars

The original; the hook into this entire magical world!

Rilla of Ingleside (#8)
5 stars

A beautiful, honest, and detailed exploration of growing up during World War I.

Anne’s House of Dreams (#5)
5 stars

Anne and Gilbert finally get married and develop a WONDERFUL community of their own outside

Anne of the Island (#3)
4 stars

Anne Shirley goes to college, makes new female friends, and discovers how what you believe you want and what you ACTUALLY want are not always the same.

Anne of Avonlea (#2)
3 stars

As Anne Shirley comes into adulthood we explore a demi-repeat of book 1 with new characters and teenage angst.

Anne of Ingleside (#6)
3 stars

Anne and Gilbert have moved into town and their children are growing up. Cute stories, but nothing overly exciting to write home about compared to the other books to this point.

Rainbow Valley (#7)
3 stars

A collection of vignettes focusing on NOT the Blythe children, but their neighbors, the Merediths.

Anne of Windy Poplars (#4)
2 stars

A demi-epistolary novel during Anne’s teaching year which was obviously written as an afterthought.

 

There is a huge range of ratings across all these books, yes. If you aren’t willing to commit to reading the full series, I STRONGLY encourage you to read books 1 and 8. Rilla of Ingleside easily stands alone and is wonderful.


Favorite Posts from #AnneReadAlong2017

During the course of the read along Jane and I posted over 30 posts, plus read-alongers also joined in! Here are few of my own posts I am most proud of:

Anne of Green Gables Book Review

5 Adventures Present-Day Anne Would Have Gotten Up To

5 Songs for my Anne Reading Soundtrack

Anne’s House of Dreams Book Review

A Biography of L.M. Montgomery

Top 5 Things I Learned reading Anne of Green Gables

Rilla of Ingleside Book Review


Giveaway Winner

As you might have seen on the End of Anne Giveaway post, we had a wrap-up giveaway! The winner of this giveaway gets an amazing Anne of Green Gables prize pack featuring…

  • Litographs Anne of Green Gables tote water-resistant 17″ x 14.75″ tote bag
  • One 8×10 Anne of Green Gables print from CarrotTopPaperShop featuring the quote “Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?” from Anne of Green Gables
  • Anne of Green Gables bonded leather hardcover book

And the winner is…..

Congratulations, Shouni! I will be reaching out to you shortly to get details on where to send your giveaway prizes!


Thank you!!!

This read along would not have happened without the amazing help and participation from so many wonderful bloggers. I want to take a moment to thank a few people specifically:

  • Jane: Thank you so much for co-hosting this with me! It’s been wonderful finding a Kindred Spirit in you and bonding over this amazing experience.
  • Melanie, Sarah Emsley, and Naomi: Thank you three for sharing so much amazing LM. Montgomery wisdom from your combined experiences, calling out important things to pay attention to, and helping me better understand the works of L.M. Montgomery
  • Jillian: Thank you for bringing your passion to this read along! I feel so fortunate to know you; I have learned so much in the last few months from you alone!
  • Laila: Thank you for your consistency and honesty throughout the entire read along. Your read along review posts were some of my favorites.

I couldn’t be happier that I took on this challenge and that you all came with me. This was a wild roller coaster and I loved every minute with you all. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!


What do you think?

  • That’s a wrap for #AnneReadAlong2017! What do you think of this experience?  Would you participate in something like this again?
  • What are your favorite Anne of Green Gables books? Which are your least favorite?
  • Who are your favorite characters? Favorite scenes? Favorite settings?
  • What L.M. Montgomery book would you recommend I read next?

13 Comments

  • (Danielle) Books, Vertigo and Tea January 31, 2018 at 5:37 pm

    I have really enjoyed this even if I was not able to read along this time! I particularly love that you finished with a high note and Rilla was a 5 star for you.

    • Jackie B February 2, 2018 at 3:27 pm

      Thank you so much, Danielle!!! It means a lot to me that you’ve been following along this whole time, too. It’s nice to have people caring and connecting the dots with me along the series as a whole. 😀

  • Krysta January 31, 2018 at 6:15 pm

    I think you’ve aptly summed up Anne of Avonlea. 🙂

    • Jackie B February 1, 2018 at 9:05 pm

      XD XD XD Thank you!!!

  • Jane @ Greenish Bookshelf January 31, 2018 at 10:13 pm

    What a wonderful journey we’ve been on, Jackie!! Thanks for everything!!

    • Jackie B February 2, 2018 at 3:44 pm

      It’s been absolutely amazing, Jane. I will miss all our regular interactions. <3

  • Sarah Emsley February 1, 2018 at 12:10 pm

    Thanks for the invitation to revisit these books with you!

    • Jackie B February 1, 2018 at 1:56 pm

      Of course! It was so much fun. I cannot wait to learn more about Montgomery’s life, too. Her journals are on my to read list!

      • Sarah Emsley February 1, 2018 at 2:55 pm

        They’re fascinating! And, often, so very sad. The struggle to get to a university, even for a year, and then the heartache and depression she dealt with, especially later in her life. I haven’t yet read all of the complete journals but I’m working my way through. Have you read the Emily books? I can’t remember if we’ve talked about this already. The Story Girl? Those are some of my other favourites. And I really like Melanie Fishbane’s novel Maud, inspired by LMM’s life. Probably I’ve mentioned all of these before. Oh, and I like Pat of Silver Bush. Haven’t read that for years, though. Another one to go back to at some point.

  • Amanda @Cover2CoverMom February 3, 2018 at 8:34 am

    How am I going to read #7 when it is so far down on the list?! It doesn’t even follow the Blythe family?! What is the point of that?!

    • Jackie B February 3, 2018 at 9:03 am

      XD I adore you. I mean, they are involved, but it doesn’t follow them exactly… I honestly think you’d like it a lot more than I did. Why? Because these vignets are adorable and well written. The Meredith children have quite a bit more personality than the Blythe children. I rated it so low because I was EXPECTING this to be about the Blythes. I was waiting the WHOLE BOOK for the reall book to start. O_o If you go in knowing what to expect I know you’ll really enjoy it. I know someday I’ll return and re-read it. I expect that I’ll enjoy it a lot more on a re-read.

  • Laila@BigReadingLife February 3, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    Oh thank you so much for what you said, Jackie. I so thoroughly enjoyed participating in the Readalong. And without it, I know I never would have completed the series, which would have been a real shame, since Rilla is one of the best of the bunch. Much thanks to you and Jane!!

    Also, I’ve never read any of her other books but I’d like to some day! (You know how “some day” does, ha ha.)

  • Grab the Lapels February 3, 2018 at 8:46 pm

    If you’re worried about investing time into another series, like many of us, I would recommend reading either LMM’s novels or short story collections. I know she has two novels for adults, The Tangled Web and The Blue Castle, and I have two of her short story collections, one all about marriages and the other about hauntings!

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