Title: Anne of Green Gables
Series: Anne of Green Gables, Book 1
Author: L. M. Montgomery
Narrator: Colleen Winton
Publisher: Post Hypnotic Press
Publication Date: May 30, 2014
From the publisher—
Anne, a young orphan from the fictional community of Bolingbroke, Nova Scotia (based upon the real community of New London), is sent to Prince Edward Island after a childhood spent in strangers’ homes and orphanages. Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert, siblings in their 50s and 60s, had decided to adopt a boy from the orphanage to help Matthew run their farm. They live at Green Gables, their Avonlea farmhouse on Prince Edward Island. Through a misunderstanding, the orphanage sends Anne Shirley. Anne is described as bright and quick, eager to please, talkative, and extremely imaginative. She has a pale face with freckles and usually braids her red hair. When asked her name, Anne tells Marilla to call her Cordelia, which Marilla refuses; Anne then insists that if she is to be called Anne, it must be spelled with an e, as that spelling is “so much more distinguished”. Marilla at first says the girl must return to the orphanage, but after a few days she decides to let her stay. Marilla feels that she could be a good influence on the girl and had also overheard that another disagreeable woman in town might take Anne in instead.
There aren’t many of us over the age of 30 who don’t know all about Anne Shirley and her fictional life on Prince Edward Island. I remember reading the books as a young girl and, later, so did my daughters. One in particular collected them all (8) and we were big fans of the 1985 mini-series and 1987 tv movie that starred Megan Follows as Anne. Today, I don’t know if the younger generations are familiar with these books but there are reasons they’re considered classics. Besides being a window on the world of the early 20th century, Ms. Montgomery gives us characters that are wholesome without being overly sappy and they’re highly entertaining.
Already being completely sold on Ms. Montgomery’s work, I was just a little concerned about the audio edition. Narration can make or break an audiobook and the samples available, while appealing, were too limited to tell how good it would be. I need not have been the least bit worried.
Colleen Winton does an absolutely wonderful job with the overall story and characters, bringing it all to life, and she vocalizes every character so well that it’s easy to identify each one. It’s Anne, though, that is Ms. Winton’s tour de force and I can honestly say she became this young girl. Anne’s zest for life comes out with her first words, meeting Matthew at the train station, especially in the way she speaks as if she’s the Energizer Bunny. That could possibly be irritating to some—do you remember when you thought the little kid nearest and dearest to you would never stop asking questions?—but it’s also just right.
I can’t think of a single reason not to read or listen to Anne of Green Gables even if you’re a young hotshot techie guy or interested only in art books or whatever so grab a copy as soon as you can 😉
Reviewed by Lelia Taylor, August 2017.
About the Author
Lucy Maud Montgomery OBE (November 30, 1874 – April 24, 1942) was a Canadian author best known for Anne of Green Gables and the series of novels that book begins. The “Anne” of the books is Anne Shirley, an orphaned girl who comes to live with Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert on their farm, Green Gables. Published in 1908, the book was an immediate success in Canada, the United States and beyond. It has been adapted multiple times to screen, stage, radio, and TV.
Anne Shirley made Montgomery famous in her lifetime and gave her an international following. Anne of Green Gables was ranked number 41 in “The Big Read,” a survey of the British public by BBC to determine the “nation’s best-loved novel” (not children’s novel!). And a survey conducted by School Library Journal (USA) in 2012 ranked Anne of Green Gables number nine among all-time children’s novels.
Anne of Green Gables was followed by a series of sequels with Anne as the central character. Montgomery published 20 novels as well as 530 short stories, 500 poems, and 30 essays in her lifetime. Her work, diaries and letters have been read and studied by scholars and readers worldwide. Mostly set in Prince Edward Island and locations within Canada’s smallest province, the books made PEI a literary landmark and popular tourist site. Montgomery was made an officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1935.
Publisher Social Media:
About the Narrator
Colleen is a Vancouver actor, singer, dancer, director and choreographer…and now a narrator. Her career has taken her all over the country and includes the Stratford, Shaw and Charlottetown Festivals, the original Canadian companies of CATS and Show Boat, extensive film/TV credits, and numerous directing/choreographing credits. Her stage work has been honoured with numerous nominations and a Jessie and Ovation award and she received a cultural award given by her local Chamber of Commerce. She was especially pleased to have recorded the works of L.M. Montgomery for Post Hypnotic Press just before she embarked on a production of the musical “Anne of Green Gables” at Theatre Calgary in which she plays Marilla Cuthbert.
Play an excerpt here.
Follow the tour here.
The giveaway is for store credit at
Post Hypnotic Press
Runs July 30th- Aug. 20th