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What have you just finished reading?

Rilla of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery and Thursday's Children by Rumer Godden.

Rilla of Ingleside has, in some ways, more depths than the rest of the series, because Canada goes through WWI during the time of the novel. Young men go off to war, and several of the young women go off to volunteer support work as well. Rilla, who is a rather silly, spoiled little girl at the start of the novel, ends up keeping the home fires burning and also taking care of an almost-orphan baby: his father is off in the war and his mother has died. Rilla ends up (with her family's support) bringing him up "by the book." It's interesting to see an early take on this: she's worried about germs and so on, yet at one point (strikingly similar to the scene in the first book where Anne saves Diana's little sister's life), the child's life is saved by a rather bizarre old-style medical treatment. The book's final scene happens rather abruptly – almost an afterthought – but the last line is a killer! XD

The Godden book was a comfort reread, and I skipped some scenes in the first part, because they make me too sad (and that's saying something: there are a lot of sad scenes in the book). Doone and Crystal Penny are the youngest children of a grocer and his wife, a former chorine. Ma is devoted to the idea of making Crystal into the ballerina she herself always yearned to be, but she has no concept of the serious, hard-working side of ballet training and spoils Crystal abominably. Doone, an unwanted afterthought baby, is enchanted with dance and music and shows real talent at both, but between Ma's focus on Crystal and Pa's conviction that ballet is only for girls and queers, he has a really tough row to hoe. It all comes right in the end, not only for Doone, but also for Crystal: as horrid and spoiled as she is, she's also been mistreated by her family, and she needs to go through emotional fire to earn her happy ending. This book always strikes me as "Rumer Godden writes Noel Streatfeild," and it has the strengths of both authors.

What are you currently reading?

More non-fiction and also some fiction for story research, plus Wild Adapter vol. 4 (re-read). Volumes 4 (where Kubota gets taken into police custody after being observed at a crime scene) and 5 (the flashback to where Kubota finds Tokito, narrated by their young neighbor Shouta) are my favorites in this series. Not coincidentally, they also have the most scenes with my favorite supporting characters: Detective Kasai (who is Kubota's uncle), Dr. Kou, Anna, Takizawa the reporter (now a freelance journalist), and Shouta himself.

What do you think you'll read next?

I have downloaded Little Fuzzy to my phone. I am also going to be reading a tour book or two for our upcoming vacation.

 

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Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
badtzphoto
Jul. 11th, 2013 05:05 pm (UTC)
I cried buckets every time I read "Rilla of Ingleside" (have reread more than once). Rilla grows a lot in that book.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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