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A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene…
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A Girl of the Limberlost (original 1909; edition 1910)

by Gene Stratton-Porter, Wladyslaw T. Benda (Illustrator)

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1,450255,168 (4.1)103
Member:mirrordrum
Title:A Girl of the Limberlost
Authors:Gene Stratton-Porter
Other authors:Wladyslaw T. Benda (Illustrator)
Info:Doubleday, Page & Co (1910), Hardcover, 485 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
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A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter (1909)

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It was great fun to finally read this book I had heard about through my childhood and growing up---from my mother---but somehow I never read it. It has a fairy-tale like quality to it but so many things have changed since 1909, when this was first published. Elnora was written as a girl/woman ahead of her times in terms of interests and ambition and even the ending presents her as a person who will equal her husband at the same time she performs the wifely duties required of the time. Too bad there isn't a sequel, written after children arrive---will she be just like Freddie and Angel? Fascinating to see how many mothers and grandmothers of reviewers introduced this book to their offspring. ( )
  nyiper | May 3, 2015 |
How did I miss this book when I was younger? It’s like a slighter darker version of Anne of Green Gables, and I loved every second of it.

Published in 1909, the story is about a young girl named Elnora who lives in the country. She is going to high school for the first time, but her lack of social skills and money makes the way difficult. Her whole life has been spent on her farm with her cold, unloving mother. Her father died in the Limberlost swamp the day she was born and her mother has resented her ever since.

Elnora is such a unique character. She is stubborn and driven to succeed. She's fiercely intelligent but incredibly compassionate. She is patient, giving her mother the benefit of the doubt for years. She's a hard worker, willing to make money to achieve her dreams. She has self-respect and is willing to sacrifice in order to find true happiness. She reminded me a little bit of Jane Austen’s Lizzy Bennet, particularly in a scene where one woman comes to talk to her about her possible engagement.

There is so much I loved about this book. There's a fantastic female lead who isn't just trying to win a man. The plot focuses on relationships with her family and friends and pursuing her dreams. She stands up for herself even when she doesn't fit in. She's a problem solver and isn't overwhelmed when a slight obstacle gets in her path.

**SPOILERS**
Kate Comstock, Elnora's mother, is a fascinating character. She’s so oblivious to the pain she causes her daughter because she’s trapped in a prison of grief. She has one of the most drastic changes in attitude and overall character development that I've ever read. The way it's done it's completely believable, but it's still a 180 and it was so satisfying to see her relationship with Elnora change throughout the book.

I love how the romantic aspect of the story played out too. Elnora protects her own feelings and isn’t swayed the moment Philip gave her a second glance. She waited until she was sure he didn't want anyone else and she was not just a consolation prize. That’s so unusual to find in a novel, especially one written more than 100 years ago. She wanted someone who loved her deeply, not someone who settled for her in a moment of passion.
**SPOILERS OVER**

BOTTOM LINE: I fell hard for this novel. Elnora is so determined and intelligent, she’s definitely become one of my new favorites. The book is chocked full of wonderful characters, including her Uncle Wesley, the young ruffian Billy and even her selfish, detached mother becomes a character you care about. ( )
  bookworm12 | Mar 5, 2015 |
Read ALL of her books in my teen years, own two of them....plan on re-reading them again some day...remember with such fondness, introduced me to ginseng!!...filled with mild romance, love of Nature...I recommend...G. ( )
  Gemma. | Jun 17, 2013 |
I have held onto this book for 48 hours after I read it. I reluctantly have to return it to the Hudson Library and Historical Society. This book has stayed with me. I yelled, screamed, cried a million tears as I let the words and the story line pour over me. This book has stayed with me. I wish everyone could stop what they are doing a read just a chapter a day. They like me would never be the same afterwards. ( )
  seki | May 28, 2013 |
I expected to learn about a forgotten time, a time when people worked the land, and girls wore dresses, and life was simple. But I seemed to be consumed with reflecting on the relationships in the story, and how even today, we suffer unnecessarily because of a lack of communication. Pride is a terrible thing, so is keeping secrets.
So many life lessons are learned while reading this story. All the characters have something to teach us. Gene Stratton-Porter was a great author.
Enjoyed learning about moths as well. Mrs. Comstock was my favorite character. ( )
  CSailin | May 1, 2013 |
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Epigraph
Dedication
To all girls of the Limberlost in general, and one Jeannette Helen Porter in particular.
First words
"Elnora Comstock, have you lost your senses?" demanded the angry voice of Katharine Comstock whle she glared at her daughter.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0253203317, Paperback)

Of all the books written by Hoosier writers, Gene Stratton-Porter’s A Girl of the Limberlost is unquestionably the most cherished: the timeless story of an impoverished young girl, Elnora Comstock, growing up on the edge of the Limberlost swamp. Elnora Comstock has served as a role model for successive generations of independent young readers.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:56:26 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Deeply wounded by her embittered mother's lack of sympathy for her aspirations, Elnora finds comfort in the nearby Limberlost Swamp, whose beauty and rich abundance provide her with the means to better her life.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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Indiana University Press

2 editions of this book were published by Indiana University Press.

Editions: 0253203317, 0253133203

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