Pat of Silver Bush
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Pat of Silver Bush (1933) is a novel written by Lucy Maud Montgomery, noted for her Anne of Green Gables series. The protagonist, Patricia Gardiner (called Pat), hates change of any kind and loves her home, Silver Bush, more than anything else in the world. She is very devoted to her family: her father and mother, her brothers Joe and Sid, and her sisters Winnie and Rachel (who everyone in the family calls Cuddles). The book begins when Pat is 7 years old and ends when she is 18.
Throughout the text, various members of Pat's family are lost from Silver Bush (Aunt Hazel to marriage, Joe to life as a sailor, and Winnie to marriage). Pat is sustained through these losses due to her enduring love for her home. She is "unlike other children" and has few close friends. She maintains a strong friendship with Hilary "Jingle" Gordon, and later befriends Elizabeth "Bets" Wilcox, who eventually dies of the flu.
Like most of Montgomery's texts, Pat is a domestic tale. Unlike Anne Shirley or Emily Starr, the only other Montgomery heroines whose stories are told in multiple texts, Pat is not ambitious nor a writer. She also has a conventional family and home life, unlike the others, who are orphans.
The book's sequel, Mistress Pat, describes her later years.
Patricia (Pat) Gardiner: The heroine of the novel. Loyal and loving, and overly sensitive to any perceived slight to her home.
Joe Gardiner: The oldest child. Joe is not interested in farming and ultimately runs off to sea.
Winnie Gardiner: The oldest girl. Winnie is a beauty. Pat has a difficult time dealing with her marriage and her leaving the family home.
Sid Gardiner: Pat's closest sibling both in age and relationship. He is interested in farming and has a childhood crush on Pat's friend Bets.
Rachel Gardiner (called "Cuddles"): The youngest child. She is born early in the novel and grows into an inquisitive child.
Aunt Hazel: Pat's beloved aunt, who marries early in the book.
Long Alec Gardiner: The father of all the Gardiner children.
Mrs. Gardiner: The mother of all the Gardiner children. Her health is never very good and is significantly affected by the birth of Cuddles.
Judy Plum: The family's live-in housekeeper who has lived at Silver Bush for years and is regarded almost as a second mother to all the children. She speaks with an Irish brogue and tells the children stories, feeds them well, and generally mothers all members of the household.
Elizabeth "Bets" Wilcox: Pat's best friend, who ultimately succumbs to the flu.
Hilary "Jingle" Gordon: A local boy who lives nearby with his not-very-loving aunt and uncle after his mother abandoned him. As they grow up together, Hilary grows to realize he loves Pat, but Pat does not believe she loves him.