Today I am going to tell you about one of my favourite series of books.
For years I have heard about the Emily of New Moon series so when I saw the series on sale last year, I had to buy them! And I’m so happy I did as it ended up being one of my favourite series I have read.
It is a trilogy consisting of Emily of New Moon, Emily Climbs and Emily’s Quest written by L. M. Montgomery who you may already have heard of as she also wrote the Anne of Green Gables series. I’ve just started reading Anne of Green Gables, I’m just over halfway through the first book. I again bought the trilogy, but I then found out there are actually eight books in the series *oops* so I’ve just bought the complete series too. When I have finished them, I might write a review or comparison here on my blog, let me know in the comments below if that is something you’d like to see?
Emily of New Moon
This is the first and also longest book in the series, my copy is 405 pages. It was first published in 1923 and the series is set in Prince Edward Island, Canada which is where the author spent her childhood.
The book begins with the death of Emily’s mother and then her father, she is only about 8 years old when she goes to live at New Moon with her aunts Laura and Elizabeth, and Cousin Jimmy. Emily is a very headstrong character, who loves her cats very much. As Emily is still young in this book at times it can be quite whimsical, with “Emily in the glass”, “the wind woman” and “the flash” which I liked as it referenced to childhood imagination and how you see things differently when you’re younger.
Throughout this book Emily goes on mini adventures with her friends, Ilse, Teddy and Perry. Emily realises that she wants to be an author, she begins by writing poetry and short stories which she writes on any paper she can find.
In this book Emily is starting high school in Shrewsbury. Emily is thrilled to be going to high school alongside her friends, however in order to, she must board at her Aunt Ruth’s house on the condition that she stops writing stories. This is very tough for Emily who loves writing stories in her ‘Jimmy-book’ and dreams of becoming an author. During this book Emily goes through an italics phase which her former teacher Mr Carpenter disapproves of.
Emily and Ilse go on more adventures together, selling subscriptions door-to-door to earn money and to pay for their boarding in Shrewsbury. They become a little lost one night which leads to the return of Emily’s “second sight”.
Emily’s writing improves and her dream of becoming an author becomes more real as she receives her first paycheque and has an interview with Miss Royal, a journalist who lives in New York.
As the book continues her childhood friendships begin to become complicated as Emily realises that she in fact loves Teddy, and Teddy’s mother becomes even more jealous of Emily as she doesn’t want to share him.
Although this book is shorter than the rest, time appears to travel faster than ever. The book begins with Emily having just finished high school and ends in her mid-twenties. Emily’s friends have all moved on to further education, with Teddy at art school and Perry studying law, whilst Emily is back at New Moon for the foreseeable. With each visit her friends seem more distant, especially Teddy, so determined to hide her feelings Emily throws herself into finishing her novel.
Much of this book is written in a diary format however it does not mention the exact year in which it is set, instead Emily writes the date then “19-” in the corner of the page. However, we can most definitely say that it is set post-Victorian as Emily and Ilse often mention the Victorians in their conversations as a manner of describing something to be old-fashioned, for example; as Emily says “You call every nice, simple, natural emotion Victorian. The whole world today seems to be steeped in a scorn for things Victorian. Do they know what they’re talking of? But I like sane, decent things, if that is Victorian.”
Emily faces a lot of rejection in this book, from Teddy but also from magazines and publishers. The friends’ relationships become very complicated during this book. As the characters are older than the previous books, a lot of the storyline centres around relationship drama. Emily gets engaged to Dean and she gets the house she always dreamed of but realises she can’t go through with the wedding as she’s still in love with Teddy, her relationship with Dean then turns out to have been a little toxic as he admits that he thought her book was actually good all along but hid the truth from her as he wanted Emily to love only him and not writing. Later Ilse admits that this whole time she has been in love with Perry, even though she is now engaged to Teddy. There’s a lot of twists and turns in this book, but as it’s the last in the series everything is wrapped up in the end.
I really enjoyed reading this series and I’m so glad I finally did. My favourite book is either Emily of New Moon or Emily Climbs as I feel they had the most interesting storylines and anecdotes, whereas Emily’s Quest felt a little rushed to me. I really like L. M. Montgomery’s style of writing and the progression through the series, with the first book starting with Emily as a child and the last ending as an adult, from what I can see I think the Anne of Green Gables series follows this style too? If you know comment below. It’s a really interesting idea and technique as it makes the books equally readable for both children, teens and adults. If you’re a fan of Anne of Green Gables I definitely recommend you read this series too!
I hope you enjoyed this post! What are you currently reading? Comment down below.
I’m currently aiming to post weekly, on Saturdays at 4pm GMT, with a mixture of craft, sewing and knitting tutorials, book reviews, baking recipes and more!
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Emily M x