15/05/2006

Kilmeny of the Orchard

This is a short novel for teenagers and adults by LM Montgomery, best known for her 'Anne of Green Gables' series. It's nowhere near as compelling as the 'Anne' books, and yet surprisingly enjoyable in its way.

The overall story is straightforward: Eric, newly graduated from college, goes to teach at a village school for a few months to help a friend. There he meets Kilmeny, a very beautiful girl...

There are a few unexpected plot twists which I won't reveal, making it a little more unusual than the average romance, and while the characters are a little stereotyped, they are still likeable and I found myself caring what happened. The conclusion was rather melodramatic - I'd have preferred it to take a little longer, and be slightly less predictable - and if the author hadn't been famous for her other works, I'm sure this little book would have been lost by now. As it is, it's published in paperback and also available to read online since it was written in 1910 and is now out of copyright.

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