Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Anne of Green Gables Audio

Anne of Green Gables Audio

Lucy Maud Montgomery
For ages 9 and up
Performed/read by: Susan O'Malley
Blackstone Audio, Inc., 1998   ISBN: 978-0786195831

To the amazement of the good people of Avonlea, Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert have decided that they are going to adopt an orphan boy; Matthew is no longer as young as he used to be and he could do with a little help around the farm. The thing of it is, when Matthew goes to get the boy from the train station he discovers that some kind of mix-up has taken place and there is a girl waiting for him at the station. She's not just any girl either. This girl has flaming red hair, she never seems to stop talking, and what she says can be very peculiar and very funny.

Though Anne Shirley has had very little education, she has somehow picked up a lot of ideas, and she is a bottomless well of questions. At first Marilla is convinced that Anne should be returned to the orphan asylum as soon as is possible, but Anne, in just a few days, grows on her. Matthew is convinced that Anne should stay, and before Marilla quite knows what is what, Anne is settled into one of the gable bedrooms in the Cuthbert house.

Marilla with her sharp tongue and old-fashioned ideas, and Matthew with his gentle, quiet and generous ways, soon find themselves severely tried by the "scrapes" that Anne gets into. No matter how hard she tries, Anne still manages to ?find' trouble.

Though this book was originally written at the turn of the century, and though the writing style and some of the ideas and sentiments expressed in the book are somewhat old-fashioned, there is no doubt that the irrepressible little redhead who decries "woe" and similar dramatic phrases, is timeless in her appeal. Anne Shirley is funny, loveable, and at times she sets her world on its head with her antics. However she also gives her love and affection freely, and she is generous and well meaning.

Listeners will greatly enjoy Anne's various adventures, sharing in her triumphs, and laughing out loud at some of her more outrageous mistakes. With grace and obvious affection, L.M. Montgomery shares her Prince Edward Island world with us, and she shows us how good things can still happen to good people.

Susan O'Malley's narrative of this classic story is sensitive and perfectly in keeping with story's setting.