Anne in Autumn


The leaves are turning, whether from the intense summer sun or the coming autumn, and it’s that time of year to discard the cheap summer paperbacks and rummage through the attic for more weightier reads.  You know, books to cuddle up on the couch with while the pumpkin pie bakes and the corn chowder warms on the stove.

When I think of fall books, I think of comfort reads. And no read is more comforting than the Anne of Green Gables series by Lucy Maud Montgomery (there are eight in all).

Now, don’t be too quick to write these off as just some old tattered books that would pale in comparison to Harry Potter and Hunger Games. I think it’s good for us every now and then to invest in a read that isn’t quite so action-packed, and instead causes you to give pause and think about a simpler, quieter life. (And if anything, you’ll learn why it’s a bad idea to call a redhead “carrots.”)

But Anne of Green Gables isn’t slow, as in boring. No, there’s plenty of drama and humor to keep readers of all ages engaged. The best I can compare it with is Downton Abbey. There’s no wizardry wars or apocalyptic gun fights. Instead, there’s story infused with characters you won’t help but love.

Honestly, I can’t wait to read these to our kids, starting in the crib. I hope they grow up appreciating great stories, old and new. I especially love these books because adoption is such a huge theme throughout.

Sarabeth introduced me to Anne just before we got married, and I’m in debt to her for that. I’m sorry I laughed at her the first time she mentioned it. And I’m glad she didn’t laugh at me when I asked her to explain what a gable is.

Have you read the series? Which one is your favorite? What are your favorite comfort books for the fall?

Like the artwork? Check out more of Claire Keane’s work on her blog.


About Andrew Toy
Writer when I'm not being a husband or dad. So mostly just a husband and dad.

61 Responses to Anne in Autumn

  1. Tara-Erin says:

    LOVE. Read first 2 or 3 aloud w/my mom and sister when young. Maybe time to read with my sons…Thanks for the memories 🙂

  2. MissTiffany says:

    I love Anne. I read her long before I met Harry or Katniss, and she remains a favorite. Not sure if I could name a favorite book out of the eight (maybe the first one?) I would have to reread them. It is about time… It’s a great series to read to your kids! 🙂
    My favorite comfort books for any time of year are Pride and Prejudice, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, and The Hobbit. 🙂

  3. dweezer19 says:

    I have always been an avid reader since elementary school and Anne of Green Gables was right up there with the rest of the young person’s classics for me. I was sorry to reach the last page. I love books that ‘take you there” both emotionally and visually and this one did it for me.

  4. Tara-Erin says:

    Thanks for link to Claire Keane blog, BTW – amazing illustrator!

  5. I love reading about Anne Shirley’s adventures and especially enjoy the video series that is really true to the story. And you are so right- it makes me want to hug and love a lonely child.

  6. Becky says:

    Oh, these books are great! I remember reading them with my daughter when she was little (she’s almost 30 now!) – such great memories! She still loves to read, and is passing that passion on to her little guy! I’m not sure I could say which one is my favorite, but I saw them when I was cleaning up some things the other day, and I think I’m going to read them again. For some reason, fall just seems like the perfect time of year to read these books 🙂
    Thank you!

  7. Amber Nadeau says:

    Rainbow Valley was my favorite growing up. These days I’d have to say Anne’s House of Dreams or Rilla of Ingleside is my favorite, although I love them all. Fortunately, since they are in the public domain now, they are freely accessible online! The ’80’s movies and the anime, Akage no Anne (1979) are also very good. The anime scenery was done by Hayao Miyazaki!

  8. I’m skeptical of anime – have never watched any – but I just looked up some images on google, and the backgrounds are very pretty.

  9. Anne is the best! I was given her books very young and read and re-read them many times. I can’t wait for my kids to be old enough to pass them on!

  10. calmgirl06 says:

    I loved these books as a young adult, had a bit of acrush on Gilbert Blythe!

  11. Where is the “love” button when ya really need it??
    Awesome artwork, by the way. Where did you find it?
    Okay, my favorite Anne book is probably Anne of the Island. My favorite series by Montgomery is the Emily of New Moon series. And my favorite stand-alone book by Montgomery is Kilmeny of the Orchard.

    I LIVED off her books as a young girl. 🙂 🙂 🙂 The Sullivan Entertainment company did such a great job with the films (except that last, weird, generated one…). And we watched the Avonlea series faithfully, my mom and I.
    Bless you for recognizing their worth!

    Have you ever read Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott? It’s much the same wholesome feel. Of course it feels patronizing to us, given the fashion of novels at the time it was written, but it’s delightful!

    • learningtoliveoutsidethebox says:

      I had totally forgotten about Louisa May Alcott’s book Eight Cousins. I love her work! I will have to re read it!

    • I think Sarabeth has Emily of New Moon, and I’ll have to check it out. And no, I haven’t read Eight Cousins, but I’m going to! Thank you so much! – At the risk of sounding like a girl, Little Women is easily one of the top three greatest books I’ve ever read. Thanks for the rec!

    • Also, the Avonlea series is really good!

  12. jamieaaron03 says:

    I only have the first one, but I look for the rest of them at every yard sale and thrift shop I go to. I love that book 🙂

  13. bloggirl52 says:

    When I think of these books, I think of innocence, simplicity and love. I loved these books as a girl, as did my little sis when I shared them with her. Our daughters are now both avid readers and I can’t wait to suggest these. Thanks so much for reminding me of them. 🙂

  14. I have only read Anne Of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea. I found Anne of Avonlea a bit slow. And it was a lot different then the movie which i wasn’t expecting. Anne of Green Gables is one of my favorites. And When I was growing up the movies were ones I watched regularly even though they are long.
    I have two little girls and I look forward to being able to share it with them.

  15. This blog was right on time for me I hadn’t read the series but was looking for something to read next …. I think I might be giving this a try picking one up tomorrow thanks love

  16. Anneli says:

    I loved the series! I read them when I was young and just gobbled them up. I love the illustration by Claire Keane also… it brings back memories.

  17. learningtoliveoutsidethebox says:

    I can still remember where I was when I started to read this book as a child. I vividly recall sitting on a swing and just falling in love with the book, the characters, and Gilbert Blithe! I’ve been looking for a good book, and have been a bit bored by the books I’ve recently downloaded. I think I will download Anne of Green Gables. Another comfort read for me is Secret Garden and A Little Princess. I love historical fiction and these books sing to me.

    • If you need a read after those, check out The Man in the Box by me. It’s not a “comfort book” but it will certainly not be boring. I know many books out now fall below standard.

  18. Natasha Musa says:

    To be honest I haven’t read Anne of Green Gables yet but you’ve got me hooked. Am definitely gonna check this out.

  19. mrsgillies says:

    Oh i love Anne of Green Gables! It’s quite sad in the last few books though. Have you read other books by L.M. Montgomery?

  20. CBurns says:

    I’m intrigued. … putting on my list today! Thank you 😉

  21. I read them when I was young, and right now my daughter and I are reading them aloud. (I love the fact that she is in sixth grade and still wants to read aloud with her mom!) We are almost finished with the first!

  22. Elaine says:

    I love these books! I read them when I was very young and the read them again about 20 years or so ago and enjoyed them even more. It’s been so long since I read them now that I am not sure which is my favorite – I love them all, 🙂

  23. Patty B says:

    One of my favorite books, also Little Women…so much more “scope to the imagination” in these books.

  24. Jen Smith says:

    I absolutely LOVE this series and have read it over and over again. Unfortunately it was also one of the series destroyed by mice while my books were in storage. :-/ Thanks for the follow too!

  25. nikute101 says:

    I adore this series ~ one of my favourites along with Little Women, The Secret Garden, Heidi and many more. Never read Emily of New Moon but I did watch the series and I really enjoyed that too. I love the old classics and the new trending books.

  26. perfectday says:

    I’ve just been wondering how old I was when I started reading the series. My grandmother (an English teacher) bought us a book every Christmas and she started me on Anne at some point, though I know I didn’t wait a year between books. My daughter is 6 and I cannot WAIT to get her started! I think maybe just a few more years…

  27. amijiwaji says:

    The Anne (with an “e) of Green Gables series is one of my favourites! Still holds pride of place on my bookshelf.

  28. I love Anne Of Green Gables – I must get the series for my Kindle (you’ll find plenty of classics on there – I was reading War Of The Worlds whilst waiting for my consultant appointment at the local hospital quite recently).

    One of my all-time favourites is the Little Women series by Louisa M. Alcott. I ought to suggest that to my Book Club for a good winter read!

    Thanks for stopping by and following; I’m looking forward to getting to know you 🙂

    • Loved War of the Worlds – the book and the movie. And Little Women is certainly one of the greatest books ever written.

      • My mother keeps buying me “Chicklit” for Christmas and it just gets dusty on the shelf until I find somebody to give the book to. I always thank her, of course, but what I’m thinking is “Good grief Mum, I love you but this is hardly Tolstoy or Wells, is it?” Bless her heart, she tries her best, but I don’t want to read about the exploits of two West End shopaholics when I have the likes of Poe, Shelley, Stoker, Tolkein and Alcott on my Kindle and my bookshelves! The books Mum gives me are the kind that I’d read in an hour and then leave for somebody else to find on the beach – if I liked sitting half naked under a baking sun whilst getting covered in sand (which I don’t). My tastes are just a tad* more highbrow than “Take A Break” and “Heat”, methinks 🙂

        You’ve got me wanting to move on to “Little Women” now, but I still have to read “The Night Circus” (Erin Morgenstern) before this month’s Book Club meeting!

        • I respect your taste so much! We need more people like you who demand a higher calling from authors. And please, please, get back to me about “Night Circus”, as it’s coming up on my reading list, and I’d like to know your thoughts before I dive in.

          • Thank you! I’m friends with several published authors who are all excellent in their genres, so I have great respect for modern-day writers (for instance, I believe that Terry Pratchett and Diane Duane will both still be in circulation long after the writers themselves are a part of history) but you honestly can’t beat the classics. I’ve also recently discovered Dorothy Koomson through my Book Club, when somebody suggested “The Woman He Loved Before”. I was expecting – from the look of the cover – to find myself reading the afore-mentioned beach fluff that I detest so much, but instead I was plunged into a wonderfully written, atmospheric murder mystery that I was unable to put down! I highly reccommend her. Maeve Binchy is another favourite of mine to curl up with, as is Barbara Erskine (history *and* ghosts? Win/win as far as I’m concerned).

            From the description of The Night circus it sounds like a wonderful read – magic, mystery and the kind of love that so few people find – I’ll definitely get back to you on that one!

            I am so glad to be meeting keen writers and readers since I began my blog; my husband is a highly intelligent man (and works at the local library as a volunteeer) but discovering up and coming new authors and discussing real books (not tat!) with other intelligent people is wonderful.

            • Adding those authors to my reading list. If you want to give my book, The Man in the Box a look, send me an email and I’ll send you a revised copy I’m currently working on.

              • Thanks, I shall do that!

                Marc Schuster is another name you should look in to; I have a Kindle copy of his book “The Grievers”, which is a tragedy, satire and full of humour all at the same time! My Book Club weren’t keen on it, but I found it to be a marvellously fun ride and – as Marc said to me – I was able to get an author known and recognised outside of the United States, and promoting a writer is good enough for me 🙂

  29. lnahay says:

    Oh, now you’ve made my day. Anne of Green Gables stirs up wonderful memories. I loved watching the series way long ago, and read the books when I was a kid. Very much a fall-winter comfort read….hmmm. (The Night Circus was very good, by the way.) Thank you for visiting my blog! I just posted part two.

  30. Oh, I love Anne so much. Such a strong and endearing character. One of my guilty pleasures is to listen to the free audiobook on while I’m pegging out the washing. There is something so comforting about being read to, I think, and Anne of Green Gables is the ultimate in comfort food!

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