Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Emily Climbs, by Lucy Maud Montgomery

This is the second in the series of Emily novels by Lucy Maud Montgomery and covers its heroine’s teenage years. In order to go to Shrewbury College, Emily must promise not to write fiction, or made up stories.

In Emily Climbs Emily very much starts putting in the hard yards required to make it as a professional writer. This means dealing with the heart break of endless rejection slips. But all the hard work pays off in the end, and Emily gets her work published and is even in the end offered a lucrative writing job. Surprisingly, she knocks it back.

Like the first novel, one of the chief charms of Emily Climbs is how authentic a description it is of the writer’s ambition. For this alone it makes fascinating reading.

I looked up the Wikipedia page for Emily Climbs and was interested to find see this quote from Montgomery:

"People were never right in saying I was Anne. But in some respects, they will be right if they write me down as Emily."

Apparently at the time of writing, Montgomery was transcribing all of her early journals, material which very much influenced the writing of the Emily series. And boy does it show.

I perhaps enjoyed this novel even more than the first one. Unfortunately, from what I hear, the third novel is not as strong as the first two. No matter, that should not discourage readers from enjoying the first two.

You can find my Lucy Maud Montgomery files here.

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