Monday, May 28, 2018

Review: House of Dreams: The Life of L.M. Montgomery by Liz Rosenberg, Julie Morstad (Illustrator)

An affecting biography of the author of Anne of Green Gables is the first for young readers to include revelations about her last days and to encompass the complexity of a brilliant and sometimes troubled life.

Once upon a time, there was a girl named Maud who adored stories. When she was fourteen years old, Maud wrote in her journal, "I love books. I hope when I grow up to be able to have lots of them." Not only did Maud grow up to own lots of books, she wrote twenty-four of them herself as L. M. Montgomery, the world-renowned author of Anne of Green Gables.

For many years, not a great deal was known about Maud’s personal life. Her childhood was spent with strict, undemonstrative grandparents, and her reflections on writing, her lifelong struggles with anxiety and depression, her "year of mad passion," and her difficult married life remained locked away, buried deep within her unpublished personal journals.

Through this revealing and deeply moving biography, kindred spirits of all ages who, like Maud, never gave up "the substance of things hoped for" will be captivated anew by the words of this remarkable woman.

Kindle, 352 pages
Expected publication: June 12th 2018
 by Candlewick Press
****
We’ve all heard of Anne of Green Gables and other novels by famed author L. M. Montgomery. I remember watching the series with Megan Follows and loving it, my initial impression was that the author shared the same personality traits as Anne did.

Right from the beginning I was captivated with the story of Montgomery's life and going in with no inclinations of what to expect I was blown away with her story.  From her childhood right to her final years Liz Rosenberg used personal journals to write this book.  This is non-fiction for young adults and was illustrated very nicely. 

It was her adult years that really stood out for me and you could say I was saddened with all she went through, it wasn't a time when women could be independent but Montgomery endured so much to follow her dreams.  The author wrote an in-depth story of what life was like in the late 1800's early 1900's until Montgomery’s end in 1942. There were a few times I got confused with the back-and-forth of time and sometimes I wondered if the frank talk about depression and it’s behavior (suffered by both wife and husband) might be too much for a younger reader.

I would have loved to see photos but given this was an advanced ebook they might appear in the print version.

I feel with all Montgomery went through and getting to know her better my desire to read more of her books has definitely peeked. Especially knowing her frame of mind while writing them. 

My sincere thanks to the publisher (via Netgalley) for an advanced copy in exchange for honest review.

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