Over the last couple of months, I've re-read a number of L.M. Montgomery's books. The Story Girl & The Golden Road, Pat of Silver Bush & Mistress Pat, the first three Anne books, and just last week, the three Emily books.
Of all of those, Anne has really held up the best for me. Those characters seem the most original and interesting, especially when compared with Emily.
I was actually quite surprised by how little I enjoyed the Emily books this time around. I disliked the snobbery of the Murrays, I found the superiority and specialness of Emily and all her friends to be rather unlikely -- one genius out of four would have been sufficient. And there was nothing about Teddy Kent that made me even like him, let alone feel he was someone Emily should have spent all that time pining after. He seemed shallow and weak and uninteresting.
Dean Priest, on the other hand, was much more suitable, except for his fatal flaw of jealousy. But I was creeped out by how he met Emily when she was 12 or 13 and he was 36 and he immediately decided -- and said aloud -- that he was going to wait for her. Should I have been freaked by that? Were you, when you read it?
Most of all, though, I was struck by how little I seemed to know Teddy, Perry, and even Ilse. So much of the book is from Emily's own first person through her diary and letters. So, we get a lot of accounts of what they did, but not much first-hand dialogue between them. Maybe I would have liked Teddy better if I'd been able to get to know him.
I think I've read all of Montgomery's work, except for maybe some of her short stories. My favourites would be A Tangled Web -- so many interesting stories all interwoven -- and Blue Castle, with the rebellion of Valancy Stirling. I'm fond of Rilla of Ingleside too.
What's your fave?