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Kilmeny of the Orchard by L. M. Montgomery
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Kilmeny of the Orchard (original 1910; edition 1989)

by L. M. Montgomery

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8092011,269 (3.6)22
Member:MsCellophane
Title:Kilmeny of the Orchard
Authors:L. M. Montgomery (Author)
Info:Bantam Books (1989), Mass Market Paperback, 134 pages
Collections:Your library, Illinois library
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Tags:fiction

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Kilmeny of the Orchard by L. M. Montgomery (1910)

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Eric Marshall, the son of a wealthy businessman is asked shortly after graduation by a Queenslea College colleague to teach in his place at a school located in Prince Edward Island (Canada) Under the pressure of high expectations by his father he decides to take the temporary diversion and enjoy his limited carefree days. He begins to settle into island life and finds much needed peace.
Soon after he meets Kilmeny Gordon, a sweet young, vibrant and talented girl. Her somewhat turbulent past and odd family relations keep her a secret and a hidden treasure of the town. Eric is enchanted and even after discovering she is mute he is determined to win her love.

The newly enhanced cover by Vintage Reader Collection instantly caught my eye. It is simply beautiful and captures the dreamy quality of Kilmeny perfectly. The story reads like a enchanting fairytale. The setting is vivdly projected and the love story endearing. Not having read any of the Anne of Green Gables series yet this has encouraged me to do so soon. A wonderful Canadian author! ( )
  LiteraryChanteuse | Jan 27, 2016 |
A short novel for young adults by the author of the 'Anne' books. A bit melodramatic at the end, but not bad for a light read. ( )
  SueinCyprus | Jan 26, 2016 |
This novella has at the heart of its conflict an emotional trauma and while there are hints at other obstacles, unlike more modern romantic stories, the path of this love story is not tainted by distrust or misunderstandings. This isn't my favorite story - there's no humor and some unpleasant attitudes towards "foreigners". But there are some moments of sweetness too. ( )
  tjsjohanna | Dec 10, 2013 |
another deliteful LM Montgomery read - this one definitely quick at 134 pages! started it at the dr's waiting for my appointment and completed by afternoon.
the typical heartwarming human interest story set in the Prince Edward Island community of Lindsay. it begins with Eric Marshall graduation with future planned for family business, circumvented by a friend's request to fill in for just one final month of schoolteaching... a greater plan at work for Eric's future and that of other island residents that include mystery and romance with some serious resistance that needs to be over ruled. ( )
  FHC | Jun 13, 2013 |
Published in 1910, Kilmeny of the Orchard was L.M. Montgomery's third novel, following upon her beloved children's classic Anne of Green Gables (1908), and its first sequel, Anne of Avonlea (1909). A thoroughly romantic tale, it owes more - in both style and narrative content - to the sentimental novels of the late nineteenth-century, than any of her other works. The tale of Eric Marshall - a wealthy young college graduate who takes a teaching position on Prince Edward Island to oblige a friend, and who falls deeply in love with a beautiful mute girl named Kilmeny Gordon - it follows a fairly standard formula, in which the obstacles to marital bliss are overcome in dramatic and unlikely ways, and the unworthy disappear conveniently from the scene.

Beautifully written as it is - and I find it quite an enjoyable book on many levels - Kilmeny of the Orchard is a somewhat problematic text for me, owing to Montgomery's apparent eugenist leanings, manifest in frequent references to the importance of bloodline, and of racial and/or ethnic heritage. Surfacing early on in the story, when Eric discusses issues of heredity with his cousin David Baker, it is a theme most fully explored in the character of Neil Gordon - the Gordon's adopted Italian son. Confronting Neil at one point, Eric thinks: "He was working himself up into a fury again - the untamed fury of the Italian peasant thwarted in his heart's desire. It overrode all the restraint of his training and environment."

As much as this unfortunate belief in innate ethnic and national qualities was the product of its time and place, so too was the insistence on the heroine's spotless virtue and complete unworldly innocence. Kilmeny - whose unsurpassed beauty seems to be one of her chief virtues - is described as a child, until Eric's kiss makes her a woman. She is trusting and naive, obedient and utterly passive. Her one moment of self-assertion, which the narrative paints as an act of "selfless love," owes much to a belief in her own unworthiness - that her disability is a "defect."

Although Montgomery's casual and oblique references to a eugenist world-view, and chauvinist insistence on passive beauty in a romantic heroine, did prevent me from taking Kilmeny of the Orchard entirely to heart, they did not ruin the book completely. There is still much here to enjoy, from the author's lyrical passages concerning the beauties of Prince Edward Island, to her well-drawn cast of eccentric secondary characters. It is an engaging story, and reads quickly. Unfortunately, it is also somewhat dated, and has none of the transcendence of her greater works. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | May 27, 2013 |
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To my cousin Beatrice A. McIntyre this book is affectionately dedicated
First words
The sunshine of a day in early spring, honey pale and honey
sweet, was showering over the red brick buildings of Queenslea
College and the grounds about them, throwing through the bare,
budding maples and elms, delicate, evasive etchings of gold and
brown on the paths, and coaxing into life the daffodils that were
peering greenly and perkily up under the windows of the co-eds'
dressing-room.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553213776, Paperback)

When twenty-four-year-old Eric Marshall arrives on Prince Edward Island to become a substitute schoolmaster, he has a bright future in his wealthy family's business.  Eric has taken the two-month teaching post only as a favor to a friend -- but fate throws in his path a beautiful, mysterious girl named Kilmeny Gordon.  With jet black hair and sea blue eyes, Kilmeny immediately captures Eric's heart.  But Kilmeny cannot speak, and Eric is concerned for and bewitched by this shy, sensitive mute girl.  For the first time in his life Eric must work hard for something he wants badly.  And there is nothing he wants more than for Kilmeny to retum his love.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:29 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Eric Marshall arrives on Prince Edward Island to become a substitute schoolmaster as a favor to a friend, but fate throws in his path a beautiful, mysterious girl named Kilmeny Gordon, who is mute. For the first time in his life Eric must work hard for something he wants badly. And there is nothing he wants more than for Kilmeny to return his love.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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