Anne of Windy Poplars
|Author||Lucy Maud Montgomery|
|Series||Anne of Green Gables|
|Publisher||McClelland and Stewart|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|Preceded by||Anne of the Island|
|Followed by||Anne's House of Dreams|
Anne of Windy Poplars, also published as Anne of Windy Willows in the UK, Australia and Japan, is an epistolary novel by L. M. Montgomery. First published in 1936 by McClelland and Stewart, it details Anne Shirley's experiences over three years teaching at a high school in Summerside, Prince Edward Island. The novel features a series of letters Anne sends to her intended, Gilbert Blythe, who is completing medical school. Chronologically, this book is fourth in the series, but it was the seventh book written.
Anne of Windy Poplars takes place over the three years between Anne's graduation from Redmond College and her marriage to Gilbert Blythe. While Gilbert is in medical school, Anne takes a job as the principal of Summerside High School, where she also teaches. She lives in a large house called Windy Poplars with two elderly widows, Aunt Kate and Aunt Chatty, along with their housekeeper, Rebecca Dew, and their cat, Dusty Miller.
During her time in Summerside, Anne must learn to manage many of Summerside's inhabitants, including the clannish and resentful Pringle family, her bitter colleague Katherine Brooke, and others of Summerside's more eccentric residents. Additionally, Anne befriends the young and lonely Elizabeth Grayson, a motherless member of the Pringle family who lives next door to Windy Poplars. She frequently visits Marilla at Green Gables.
At the end of the novel, Anne departs Summerside, returning to Green Gables and Avonlea for her wedding to Gilbert. Upon her departure many of the town's residents express that they will greatly miss her as they have grown very fond of her or have been helped by her, including Katherine Brooke and Elizabeth Grayson.
Anne Shirley The book's main protagonist. After becoming engaged to Gilbert Blythe, Anne accepts the job of Summerside High principal until Gilbert finishes medical school.
Rebecca Dew - Aunt Chatty and Aunt Kate's housekeeper. Summerside believes that she rules the "widows" with her outspoken ways and her demands. However, her employers have long learned to manage her through reverse psychology. She is genuinely fond of Anne and very kind.
Elizabeth Grayson - A lonely and unhappy child that lives next door to Anne. She is being raised by her Great-Grandmother and her Great Grandmother's elderly housekeeper, whom Elizabeth calls "The Woman". Her father left her to work overseas when Elizabeth's mother died. Elizabeth changes her name, calling herself Lizzie or Bess, based on her mood. She worships Anne and Anne, in turn, loves and cares for Elizabeth. Anne tries to find ways to bring joy to Elizabeth's life.
Aunt Chatty/Charlotte MacLean
Aunt Kate/Kate McComber
Katherine Brooke - The Vice Principal of Summerside High. She resents Anne because she believes that she should have been offered the job as Principal. Katherine is sarcastic and bitter, but a good teacher. As a child, she was orphaned and raised by her uncle. She feels the need to repay her uncle every cent he spent in raising her, so she lives a joyless and miserly life. In the end, she becomes good friends with Anne and finds her path to happiness.
Miss Valentine Courtaloe
Nora Edith Nelson
Montgomery continued the story of Anne Shirley in a series of sequels. They are listed in the order of Anne's age in each novel.
|#||Book||Date published||Anne Shirley's age|
|1||Anne of Green Gables||1908||11 — 16|
|2||Anne of Avonlea||1909||16 — 18|
|3||Anne of the Island||1915||18 — 22|
|4||Anne of Windy Poplars||1936||22 — 25|
|5||Anne's House of Dreams||1917||25 — 27|
|6||Anne of Ingleside||1939||34 — 40|
|8||Rilla of Ingleside||1921||49 — 53|
|#||Book||Date published||Anne Shirley's age|
|—||Chronicles of Avonlea||1912||—|
|—||Further Chronicles of Avonlea||1920||—|
|—||The Blythes Are Quoted||2009||—|
Windy Poplars vs Windy Willows
Montgomery's original title for the book was Anne of Windy Willows, but her US publisher requested that she change the title because of the title's similarities to The Wind in the Willows. Additionally, her publisher requested some cuts to the book, mainly for perceived gory or terrifying content. Montgomery complied, and the edited novel was published in the United States and Canada as Anne of Windy Poplars. Her UK publisher, however, did not see the need for the edits and published the unabridged version under the original title, Anne of Windy Willows.
The novel also serves as the primary source for the 1987 television mini-series Anne of Avonlea.
- My dear Mr. M: Letters to GB MacMillan from LM Montgomery, Mcgraw-Hill Ryerson Ltd, 1980, pp. 180-181
- The Differences Between Anne of Windy Poplars and Anne of Windy Willows
- Richard Jewell & Vernon Harbin, The RKO Story. New Rochelle, New York: Arlington House, 1982. p149
- Official page on the Sullivan Anne trilogy On the world famous Canadian miniseries, based in part on Anne of Windy Poplars, with a message board for fans
- The Anne Shirley Homepage - A great resource for all Anne fans with galleries, fan art, time lines, recipes and calendars.
- An L.M. Montgomery Resource Page Resource on L.M. Montgomery and Anne's Legacy
- L.M. Montgomery Online Formerly the L.M. Montgomery Research Group, this site includes a blog, extensive lists of primary and secondary materials, detailed information about Montgomery's publishing history, and a filmography of screen adaptations of Montgomery texts. See, in particular, the page about Anne of Windy Poplars.
- The L.M. Montgomery Literary Society This site includes information about Montgomery's works and life and research from the newsletter, The Shining Scroll.