The Blue Castle
by L. M. Montgomery
4 of 5 stars
I finished reading this book awhile ago...and loved it! I had no idea what it would be about, the back didn't even help much, so I just jumped in.
I was a little worried at first because the tedious and sad beginning seemed to go on and on, but if it had not I doubt I would have enjoyed Valancy's rebellion quite so much. Valancy got some news one day that changed her life - she decided to not do anything to please anyone else anymore. She would only do things she wanted to do. Well, her world fell apart and then got put back together again. And the ride was very enjoyable.
I loved the part near the end when the author started going on about "30 seconds to change everything" and I was imagining horrible, bloody tragedies...but it turned out much more mundane, surprising, plausible, and indeed life changing. Perfect.
My complaint: it got a bit long-winded in the descriptions of the scenery. But I survived. I knew it was important, and in fact a theme of the book, and forgave the author her indulgences.
My bigger complaint: the idiot who did the cover art should be shot. It says specifically in the book that Valancy never wore white except as a very young child. In fact, her clothes were few and deatiled and could easily have been pictured. And her expression! Like some expectant "young" maid who knew she was desirable. Valancy knew she was anything but desirable. But worse...why does Barney look like some prep from the 1980's? He was often dirty, unshaven, and had longish hair! Even if the artist wanted to go for when he did shave, he still wore overalls, not some sweater swung over his shoulder! Okay, I know this is a small thing - but...but...IDIOT!
Things I loved:
- Valancy's snide remarks
- that service released her
- that "love comes softly"
- that the beauty of nature is more valuable than the artifice of "traditions"
- how there was good in even the lowest in the community
- how divine forgiveness is
- how valuable it is to love - even if that love is not returned
- how personality is what makes someone beautiful
- the proposal scene
- the irony of the letter
- that she cut her hair short