Reading this second book in the Anne series was much different than my times in years past. I think that adulthood can give you a different perspective on childhood than when you were a kid, but you also notice things you might have missed when you were a kid, as well. Either way, while this was a good book, I think it might actually be my least favorite in the series.
Anne Shirley has graduated from Queen’s Academy and has deferred her admission to Redmond College for the time being in order to help Marilla Cuthbert run the farm and the Green Gables estate. She takes a teaching job at the Avonlea school and chronicles her triumphs and disasters as a teacher. Meanwhile, Marilla adopts twins, children of her distant cousin Mary Keith. The book is filled with Davy Keith’s misadventures and mischief, as well as Anne’s own adventures in Avonlea, namely the Avonlea Village Improvement Society, and her budding friendship with Gilbert Blythe.
Here are two observations as an adult that I found this re-read:
*Teacher Anne is so hilariously and naively earnest. I’ve been teaching for eight years, entering the ninth, and let me tell you, not everyone is going to like you. You cannot make everyone happy, nor can you get everyone to like you. In fact, some students are never going to like you, no matter how hard you try. If a lone student doesn’t like you, you have to shrug it off and move on the best you can. That’s what I’ve had to learn, and Anne’s weepiness that a student didn’t like her was, well, very tender and a wee bit amusing.
*Davy Keith is a bad child, and the “boys will be boys” attitude is stunningly awful. Here’s a child who locks his own sister up in a shed for hours at a time, and the worst they do is send him to bed without supper? COME ON. His antics are supposed to be hilarious and cute, but adult me found myself grinding my teeth in annoyance at his stories. You’ve been warned.
This book was interesting, though I was glad to move on to the next one.
Cross-posted to my blog.