I re-read Jane of Lantern Hill, by L. M. Montgomery, a couple weeks ago when I needed some comfort reading. L. M. Montgomery is one of my absolutely favorite authors. I love every one of her books, and Jane of Lantern Hill is no exception. The story is about a girl, Jane, who lives with her mother and wealthy, oppressive grandmother in Toronto. One year her father, who has been out of her life since she was three years old, invites her to spend the summer with him on Prince Edward Island. She goes, and it changes her life. It is a wonderful, heartwarming story, but what makes it really excellent is Montgomery’s writing. Her descriptions are so vivid; every time I read a book by her I want to go visit Prince Edward Island (where most of her books take place). Her characterizations of people and her sensitive and accurate treatment of feelings and emotions add much to her stories as well. To give you an example, here are few quotes that I found literally by opening Jane of Lantern Hill to random pages:
But as she drifted off into dreams of spruce-shadowed red roads that all led to dear little houses, her last conscious thought was “I wonder if we can get our milk at the Jimmy Johns.”
The storm broke presently and lasted for two days. The wind that night didn’t sound like wind at all . . . it sounded like the roar of a wild beast. For two days you could see nothing but a swirl of grey rain over a greyer sea . . . hear nothing but the tremendous music of huge breakers booming aginst the stubborn rocks of lower Queen’s Shore. Jane liked it all after she got used to it. Something in her thrilled to it. And they were very cosy, sitting before their fire of white birchwood those wild nights, while the rain poured against the window and the wind roared and the gulf thundered.
She would never forget what she had heard. It couldn’t be true . . . it couldn’t. Jane thought the afternoon would never end. St. Agatha’s was a nightmare. Frank had never driven so slowly home. The snow had never looked so grimy and dirty along the dingy streets. The wind had never been so grey. The moon, floating high in the sky, was all faded and paper-white but Jane didn’t care if it was never polished again.
I highly recommend Jane of Lantern Hill and any book by L. M. Montgomery.