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Budge Wilson (1927–2021)

Author of Before Green Gables

37+ Works 1,161 Members 39 Reviews

About the Author

Budge Wilson was a Canadian writer known for her children's books but wrote for all ages. She was born on May 2, 1927 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. She was a graduate of Dalhousie University with a Bachelor of Arts degree (1949). She did postgraduate studies at the University of Toronto from show more 1949-1951. In 1953, she received a Diploma of Education, and a certificate in physical education. Before becoming a writer, most of her work was in teaching. In 1978, she began to write full time. She published her first book in 1984 at the age of 56 entitled, The Best/Worst Christmas Present. She wrote over 30 books which included The Leaving (1990), Lorinda's Diary and Thirteen Never Changes (1989), Izzie (2002) and Friendships (2006). She wrote a prequel to the Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery entitled, Before Green Gables (2008). It was a featured book at the 2008 Biennial Conference, 100 Year of Anne. Wilson won numerous awards and honors which include 23 Canadian Children's Book Centre "Our Choice" selections, a Marianna Dempster Award, 2 Ann Connor Brimer Awards, a Canadian Authors Association Lilla Stirling Award, a National IODE Violet Downey Award, an Atlantic Independent Booksellers Award and an IBBY Honor Award. In 2004, she was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada. In 2011, she received the Order of Nova Scotia. She received honorary degrees from Dalhousie University in 2010 and Mount Saint Vincent University in 2012. Budge Wilson, pioneer for Canadian children's writers, died on March 19, 2021 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. She was 93. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Includes the name: Budge Wilson

Image credit: Budge Wilson


Works by Budge Wilson

Before Green Gables (2008) 736 copies
Thirteen Never Changes (1989) 51 copies
A Fiddle for Angus (2001) 25 copies
Fractures (2002) 21 copies
Trongate Fury (1734) 18 copies
A House Far From Home (1989) 11 copies
The Courtship (1994) 10 copies
Patricia's Secret (1688) 10 copies
Friendships (2006) 9 copies
Cordelia Clark (1994) 9 copies
The Dandelion Garden (1995) 9 copies

Associated Works

Help Wanted: Short Stories About Young People Working (1997) — Contributor — 26 copies
Close Ups (2000) — Contributor — 5 copies


Common Knowledge

Date of death
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Places of residence
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Ontario, Canada
Hubbards, Nova Scotia, Canada
University of Toronto (English)
Dalhousie University (Philosophy, Psychology, Education, Physical Education)
freelance commercial artist
child photographer
fitness instructor
Awards and honors
Municipality of Halifax Mayor’s Award for Cultural Achievement in Literature (1999)
Distinguished Alumni Award, Armbrae Academy, Halifax (2003)
Order of Canada (Member, 2004)
Short biography
She has been writing juvenile and adult fiction since 1978, with her first book published in 1984. Her work has been published in ten countries and in seven languages.

After living in Ontario for over twenty-five years, Budge returned to Nova Scotia in 1989, and live in a small fishing village on the South Shore of the province.



So what's Gloria's backstory and why was she so weirdly in love with her enemy's cat?

Jon (age 8) rates this 4.9 stars "because there were some good parts"
filemanager | Nov 29, 2023 |
Anyone who knows me knows of my love for Anne. I know, as an adult, the things Anne may have suffered as a child. I’m not ready to read the horrors my mind can conjure up. But I did want to know more of Anne before. I admit I wanted a watered down version of events that my mind know could have occurred. This book took me there.
There were times that I forgot the ages and would be startled to realize how young Anne was. For those who say oh she couldn’t do this, that or the other by the age in the book, perhaps you are forgetting this is fiction. Anything can and does happen in fiction. I know, I have a difficult time myself with remembering that Anne is a fictional character. But she is. I would like to pose the question, too, who are you to say what is or isn’t possible anyway? I taught myself reading when I was 3 using magnetic letters and picture cards. I took it upon myself to learn Spanish at 5 listening to records that my parents had purchased but not used. To say oh she couldn’t know this word or that one is an insult to everyone. You are capable of learning, and are learning, from conception on. I’m not special and I believe any child could learn as I did. I think many have and I hope many will continue to do so. Aside from this, in the Anne books one of her endearing qualities was her speech. She had a love for, and frequently used, big words. She was using them on the ride to Green Gables when speaking to Matthew. Do you believe she suddenly developed advanced language skills on the train ride? No she learned them, like any child, from the people around her. I believe Anne had a love for language which gave her an ear for hearing remarkable words and a brain for storing those words. We all knew the harshness of Anne’s early life. It was hinted at over and over in Green Gables. We were told how early she was put in charge of infants and younger children. This too is nothing new. Look how many siblings are put in charge, some before they are truly ready. Look at slavery. Look at different cultures. Look at the pilgrims and pioneers. Life is often harsh. This book could have been a lot harsher. The pregnancy problems, domestic violence, alcoholism all were hinted at in Anne of Green Gables. Not one of those issues is a new one. Maybe they weren’t talked about until recently or given a name back then, but they existed. To say that men were given a pass in this book with domestic violence and excuses perhaps is a hard truth. Do I think the author should have it about them another way? No. This will probably not make me popular but men were given a pass with excuses for many, many years. To attempt to change history destroys the lessons we have learned. As a survivor of domestic violence, I heard those excuses when I called police, when I dared to say how I was injured, even when I spoke of them to family and friends. To say we must rewrite history so that men don’t have these excuses makes me feel as though I should be ashamed. Once again, I am the problem. I need to hide my experience because I, obviously, wasn’t strong enough or smart enough, or good enough to slay those excuses when they were repeatedly being given to me by everyone. Domestic violence was accepted in the time Anne lived. Excuses were made. Blame was placed. Women, and many men, fought a hard fight for years and years to change things for domestic violence victims. Let us not forget what we have learned. Let us not hide the truth. Because in changing history we open the door to repeating history.
Before Green Gables is Anne’s early life. In it we are taken through events that made her the 11 year old who showed up with unstoppable dreams of a better future. Isn’t this what we all want for any child, or any adult? The unshakable belief that if we keep focused on our dreams of a better tomorrow and we work tirelessly towards fulfilling them, we will achieve them. That is what I learned from Anne in Lucy L Montegomery’s books and it is the message I found in Budge Wilson’s book.
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Wulfwyn907 | 34 other reviews | Jan 30, 2022 |
It's been many years since I last visited the world of Green Gables. It's a world I discovered because a friend loved the series--that same friend even went to P.E.I. to see some of the tourist sites related to the series.

Though this book is written by a different author, it was apparently done with the blessing of the Montgomery heirs. The tone of the book is very similar to what I remember the series as being. I'll have to leave it to others more familiar with the series to determine if any of what's in this book contradicts anything in the series itself.

I'm not sure if the author leans more toward the nature side of nature vs. nurture. Anne seems to "inherit" the fancifulness of her mother (stories, love of language, dreaming) and the intelligence of both parents even though they both die when she's only 3 months old.

The book follows Anne's life after that and stops as she's arriving on P.E.I. with Mrs. Spencer to go to the Cuthberts. (About where the series begins if I remember correctly.)
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JenniferRobb | 34 other reviews | Sep 21, 2020 |
4.25 stars

This book tells the story of Anne Shirley before L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables books. AofGG starts when Anne is already 11 years old, and although we are given hints to her life before that, Budge Wilson has detailed that life for us. The book starts with Anne's parents before she was born, their deaths when Anne was only 3 months old, and Anne's life and all her hard work caring for all the Thomas's children, then the Hammonds' children (all those sets of twins!) when she was still a child herself, then her time at the orphanage before coming to PEI.

I was really impressed with this book. I thought the author really captured Anne's personality. I was afraid she wouldn't be done justice, but I really liked this. I love Anne! I listened to the audio and thought the narrator did a very good job, as well. She also really captured Anne very well (and did a good job of the other characters and the narration, in general).
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LibraryCin | 34 other reviews | Apr 1, 2019 |



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