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10/22/2015 c17 7Formerly known as J
I loved to read this chapter with its gorgeous insights into the Fords in Toronto, and their lives away from the island.

I enjoyed that Persis is not only the most beautiful woman in the room at the charity function, but also in amongst the women's rights movement and, by the sounds, doesn't mind telling anyone how it is. Her cigarette holder was a detail I particularly enjoyed. I love that nobody considers that Ken could be mooning over Rilla, and that Persis guesses everyone but her, even wondering if his feelings are for Nan and feeling that the Blythes are like cousins. She does have a point hey, kwaky? It is a bit close (but then again, I guess the same could be said about the Merediths, really).

I also enjoyed how Ken was convincing himself that he had just casually jotted off a few lines to Rilla because of Walter but yet he felt the buzz when he saw the PEI postmark. I'm loving it. But of course his mother noticed his blush. I especially like the idea of the redecorating 'attacks' making him so cranky and the beautiful William Morris wallpaper everywhere. I would love a house like that! I really loved Leslie's description of Jem as a 'prince of Four Winds' and I remembered her and Anne fawning over him as a baby in AHoD. Beautiful work again, k.
10/21/2015 c16 Formerly known as J
Kwak, I loved the picture you painted of Ken and Walter as babies with their matching grey eyes looking at each other. Contrasting with the picture of Walter now 'so pale and lean' in his white shirt and trousers rolled up resting in the heat of Rainbow Valley was another little treat for me. Just lovely. I still wish they could have had a little something together, even though I know it can't happen. :)

I also particularly enjoyed the image of them all as children arguing about the Shakespeare play, and I especially loved little Rilla skipping around with her baby shawl for fairy wings. So cute! And Una as prompt also seemed very apt.

I was also left wondering if the unpleasantness of Walter's memories of that blonde 'fop' was because he fancied him back or not. I wasn't sure if he might have been a bit creepy..? But maybe it was just because Walter didn't want to face it yet? Meanwhile, I thought it was so moving that Ken found it within himself to tell Walter how much he loved and admired him. And, oh, Ken, 'only Owen Ford's son' - you know I love a tortured boy, k.

There was something that particularly appealed to me about Ken's letter to Rilla with the blooming R ink blot. I don't know why but that R made that letter seem much more romantic to me. Never mind once it had been embellished with Walter's poem scribbled on that 'blessed day' - and knowing that it was the last time Ken saw Walter (even though they didn't) made it all so much more poignant for me.

Another beautiful chapter here, babe. Oh, and I nearly forgot to mention how much I enjoyed Ken's surprise at Rilla's war baby adoption and how he interpreted it to mean that she couldn't love him. Genius.
10/20/2015 c15 Formerly known as J
Oh, Ethel and her plans dashed so easily by such a disdainful over-harbour remark from Ken made me laugh. I was sure his muscular arms might have held her attention for just a little longer in spite of the joke. Or maybe it's just me and my soft spot for a lovely arm...? Ken feeling those golden eyes on him as he left the station was just perfect. I bet she was shooting daggers at them!

I'm glad Di stopped at the school house - and lo and behold there's O'Ryan and his mother. No wonder her hat caught his attention for so long! And fearlessly calling her 'Diana' in front of them all - ooohh, he's so forward! Goodness me, lucky Ken didn't ask Di for a kiss, that might have been a bit awkward for everyone concerned. Or likely he would have been slapped earlier. He really is 'an unreconstructed cad' isn't he? I loved that it was not the first time he'd had a girl slap him, only the first time he didn't know why! Of course she was cranky because he was leaving Walter and Rilla, and her delayed response because she 'wasn't thinking clearly before' - no, I'm sure I wouldn't be either, Di. Hehehe.

But the real killer for me was that 'Leslie West's boy' couldn't stand to be peered at any longer. Of course he couldn't.
10/19/2015 c14 Formerly known as J
I'm back, kwak, and still loving this story, never fear. And for so many reasons: so many gorgeous details are adding to my enjoyment with each and every chapter. From Susan stirring the ice cream and worrying about the spotted dick to the lovely little references you know I love like 'mother dearwums' and the brown boy kissing mother Susan, I love it all. And I have always had a soft spot for the Song of Solomon; it is such a beautiful, beautifully uninhibited thing that I sometimes wonder how it slipped past and was allowed. All that fragrance and myrrh and wine and anointing oils ... and as for the pomegranates! But this is not the place for that discussion...

Poor Nan, looking out from the door expectantly and not being asked to stay. Of course she is right, rocks should stay put, and not run off to war, especially those rocks with crooked smiles and soft brown sweaters. It was heartbreaking. But I loved that Jerry knew just what to write to her at last after his father helped him to get clear and understand that she was his why. Sigh.

I loved that the earth smelt rich and moist as Jem and Faith get hot and heavy under their tree. And the sweet little shell ring definitely evoked circlets of pearls for me. Even though Faith didn't want pearls or rubies or gold. It was typical kwak genius that she's longing to be marked by him. And I feel sure that I would want someone like Jem Blythe to be my first and only at such a time, too. Ooh la la!

Such a gorgeous chapter, K, I love this story so much. Brace yourself for much speedier reviews from me in the coming days. :)
9/24/2015 c1 5rebeccathehistorian
I absolutely LOVE everything about this chapter. This story is going to be so good … absolutely excellent. I'm pretty sure I've told you this before, but I absolutely LOVE this story. It's probably one of my favorites.

I love the fact that you start it off with Susan just like Rilla of Ingleside did. From the beginning, I started laughing with joy at Susan's mental comments.

"But then one could not grow up under the loving hand of Anne Blythe without acquiring some of her more peculiar traits.": True.

That comment about wishing for swollen, hot hands than saying anything against Anne: That sounds *so* like Susan.

I like that personality description of Jem. :D

"… trying to recall what size feet young men had in *her* day.": Another Susan-ism. :)

I'm a little bit questionable regarding the fact that it sounds like Ingleside has electricity but considering the fact that they have a telephone (and it sounds like the rest of the Glen does too) and the fact they have a phone is an even bigger historical slight anachronism/pet-peeve of mine in the latter half of the Anne of Green Gables series, I'm thinking that it would make sense that if they have a phone then they would have electric light, so I'm going to let it slide. Although in my opinion, if Montgomery wanted to keep the Anne of Green Gables series historically accurate, the Blythes would've still been living with gas and no phone in 1914, I think.

The Mrs. Forbes story: I could see that happening.

How the hell did Di end up sitting on the peach pie?!

I love Ken's comment about Island folk waiting to plug in a potato!

I LOVE THE HISTORICAL DETAILS YOU PUT IN! YES! THE WATER PUMP, THE BLOCK OF ICE AND ICEPICK (and even though it's not mentioned, I'm assuming there is a chance/possibility that they have an icebox, but I'm not sure - I'd have to check the historical veracity on that for this time period and place), THE FACT THAT THE MEN WERE ABSENT FROM THE CANNING (OF COURSE THEY WERE), THE MENTIONING OF NAN'S CORSET/CORSET-WEARING, AND THE FORESHADOWING OF '20S DRESSES (and I like that side-note about the phrase "all the rage").

Bhahaha! Now I know that Di landed in that peach pie while trying to catch a fish!

"If you so much as mention this accursed ankle, Nan Blythe, the next pie I find will have your face all over it.": Lol.

Nan you sound like your mother. :D

Jerry sounds like a true minister. :D

Faith's sharp comment to Jem: She's got a point and she's right, though for this time period, Jem is spouting the ideas of probably many people.

I hope you don't mind but because I've already reviewed chapters 2-5, as I'm going through my re-read to catch up to where I left off a few months ago, I won't be reviewing again until chapter 6.
9/19/2015 c13 7Formerly known as J
I really enjoyed the progression of the timeline in this chapter, kwak, as Faith recedes from Una. Starting from when they were children with Faith walking up the walls and discussing the Blythes (and Jem most particularly). Is it too scary that I could relate to Una's OCD-ness in feeling that the bureau was not where it belonged out on the landing, and how much I understood her compulsion to move it into their bedroom accordingly? That, combined with her obsessive application to hair brushing because Faith had promised to do it for her just like their mother had was so touching, and explains so much about Una. And it also explains a lot about Faith, who had never missed a stroke until she was distracted by fish dinners from Jem Blythe. You know I felt for Una being filled with an 'eery tingle' about the lovely, black-haired, poetry-reciting Walter who perhaps 'felt things go all the way inside' too. Oh, Una, don't go there, can't you see he's a lost cause, pet?

I loved that the hair brushing ritual was soothing for Una after the terrible news of the Titanic - it horrifies me even now to think about that ship sinking, so I just can't imagine how horrendous it must have been for people to hear about it then. And already, Jem and Faith are nearly being sprung by his father and scarpering off into the night. I loved Faith climbing through the window, thinking about pash rash and 'our tree' while finishing brushing Una's hair.

This whole chapter served to beautifully show how observant Una is, how she notices details, and is always watching those she loves. So, I'm sure she wouldn't like Jerry 'who had never raised his hand in anger' in his uniform, when he first came home in it. And now Faith has faded all the way back to not coming at all for 'childish' hair brushing the night before Jem leaves, but at least Faith realises she has neglected it.
9/7/2015 c20 AnnaBrownie
Just finished devouring this story and feel it's about time I left a review, having eaten up all your other work over the last few days. This is a wonderful story, digging deeper into one of my favourite books of all time (though it also always makes me cry - Montgomery has an especial talent for this...). I could read about the Blythes and their friends forever, thank you for adding this excellent work to the canon. Can't wait for part two...(would also love to see more Windy Willows Love Letters soon!)
8/26/2015 c12 Formerly known as J
Yaay! Latin and Ancient Greek/Roman mythology references all in one chapter, K - it's like a dream come true for me! I am pinching myself to make sure I'm awake!

I also loved all the speculation about Di giving up the school for Jack Wright and just who's in love with whom. Anne and Gilbert are just adorable remembering his 'grand gesture' from long ago, with Anne contemplating matchmaking her own and Diana's children and Susan's almost presentient remark that being a year younger wouldn't do. But if she's only a year older than a lovely tall farm boy, that would be ok with Susan surely? Wouldn't it?

There certainly were a lot of Gilbert's namesakes over harbour weren't there? But luckily O'Ryan isn't one of them- that might be a bit awkward! I like the idea of his 'leafy, laughy green' eyes which would surely send any girl all 'apple' if she looked at them too long. Naturally you would get that boy a leaf green pair of gloves for Christmas. And I would be inviting him to my private 'Queens class' too! I just loved his little hunting arrow gift to her; he is certainly resourceful, and you know how I've admired that trait previously in other Gilberts. And I'm sure he didn't like her calling him a boy. His poor battered hands causing his bad handwriting from Ig's attempt at dairy farming- oooohh that man is horrible! And then the final ugly assault was just brutal. Thank goodness you advised me to get a cup of tea and a hanky - I needed them both.

I am deffo hoping for him to meet her there in the future, kwak. You can't mean to leave them all heartbroken like that!?
8/22/2015 c11 Formerly known as J
Poor Walter, now he's feeling guilty about neglecting Di? AND worried he'd been busted with Ken by her? That boy needs to give himself a break! I did smile at Shirley wearing his aviator's scarf. It made me wonder (not for the first time) why LMM didn't seem to bother with developing any kind of a character for him. Did she just get too tired to dream up another personality?

Poor Di, too, feeling superfluous with her hangover and nobody to debrief with about her bitter thoughts re: the brokenhearted. She really needed some of Charlie's fried ham. With a bit of Walter thrown in for good measure. And a hug from 'Dads' - yeah baby! No wonder she was cranky at Walter for not telling her the truth about this feelings and he was being frustratingly evasive about it. And ooohh her lovely boy over harbour, it tugs at my heart strings. And not eighteen yet? How much older is she, can't be too much surely? So what a relief that it was the horrible step father that was going off to war. Good riddance! And I do hope he'll have time for some fishing now too. I also fervently hope that those two work it out eventually...CTA2 I'm looking at you.

Oh my, those Blythes and Merediths all had a lot of tangled up feelings about each other, didn't they? Fancy Carl getting flustered thinking Di was Rilla? And I loved that Carl observed that her hair wasn't quiet. Mine is quite often the same if I'm agitated like she was. hehe! For some reason, I particularly liked the Edward VII coronation tin detail. And "the mothers" was sweet. FKAJ love coming right at ya, K!
8/22/2015 c10 Formerly known as J
Oh, Walter's dream sent shivers down my spine. I agree, must it really be? I feel for him and his terrible dilemma; what a horrifying time this was for young men. Well, everybody really. I always find WWI to be just hideously tragic and I think the trauma that Walter was experiencing before he even got to the front is so poignantly described in his terrible dream. How could we have asked all those poor little babies to fight and do such shocking things to each other? No wonder Walter was feeling 'sliced open' and 'wet with blood' when Ken shook him out of the dream. Of course he didn't want Ken to see his skinny post-typhoid body and oooohh his paranoia about his feelings for Ken being exposed and compounded by the jealousy. Nice.

The 'whiny' bed that had been 'good company once' made me smile and tear up at the same time. Now I'm wondering if it was really *Ken* that was the inspiration for the poems to Rosamund? Interesting... My favourite was the image of Walter kissing him goodnight and your description of the sensation on his lips - 'like a match being struck' - delicious genius simile, kwak. And I loved how while Walter was burning from his dream, Ken's body was burning for Rilla, imagining her in the room next door. Of course he was, K. I'm still loving it all.
8/13/2015 c9 Formerly known as J
You got this little luncheon scene just right, K. I could absolutely see Anne enjoying watching her brood at the lunch table, complete with Rilla's 'enthusiastic' flowers and her thinking longingly of Joy. I could also imagine Gilbert watching her so carefully on this day of all days, and being reminded of her gazing out the window on that day so long ago. You know I especially loved the description of the seating arrangements at the table, including the one always left for Joy, Susan preferring to stay close to the doctor in case heaven forbid his jam dish should empty, and confidences being exchanged determining the others. Then the portentous silence as they listened to the telephone as it started ringing sent shivers up my spine.

I was nearly as heartbroken as Anne that Gilbert had left her for so long that day, even missing seeing Jem off on the train for Charlottetown. So I loved that interaction in their bedroom and how much they still love each other -he knew her so well that he was expecting the cold shoulder from her but then expressing his own grief to her, and Anne releasing her grief to him after that. And fancy Anne wanting another baby - was that really just because she was feeling so helpless at impending war or had she gone a bit bonkers? Although we all know she did always love the babies. I did enjoy Gilbert's challenge to her and throwing caution to the wind with the matches and socks. Oooh la la!
8/7/2015 c20 11fiveby10eighty3
Is there any way for this to continue? I fell in love with this story and I swear I'm looking forward to reading more!
8/6/2015 c8 7Formerly known as J
I did enjoy my little picture of Ken and Walter snuggled up together all night, and Di worried about her father's wrath, while Walter imagined Susan withholding pudding for their selfishness!

Imagine my surprise when they found Jem reading Walter's poetry on the verandah instead - it could have been no less than Walter's. I loved the little role reversal - that it was usually Jem arriving home 'tieless and grassy haired' with Walter reading on the steps - and I was so relieved that they made up and that Jem planned to take the book away with him. Along with Jem's admission that cupid 'did his damage long ago' and that Walter was glad about it. And I choked up at "I'm right behind you."

And then your lovely little description of the girls' room with the sun turning 'every girlish thing gold' and their conversation as Di gets home from her adventures with Nan brushing her shining hair 'as if she painted sunlight on each strand' getting ready to meet Jerry. Just beautiful.

Of course I loved Jerry in his 'downy, chocolatey' sweater waiting for Nan at the bridge that lead to Four Winds, as he checked his wristwatch and gave her his crooked grin. I especially enjoyed the snide comments from Olive and Irene about 'the two love-birds' as they smiled and waved at them on the way past. And then Jerry draping his sweater around her shoulders, and remembering how 'sublime...to have her by his side all evening' but not liking her attentions towards 'that ladykiller' Kenneth Ford - I love it! I also loved that Nan thought it so obvious that Ken was fascinated with Rilla and sharing her memory of Leslie's thumb-sucking prevention techniques.
And their dialogue, with Nan confessing she was always worried that she's said things he misunderstood and Jerry declaring "I am definitely not thinking things like that" - so close, but for Nan's use of the word 'chum' and there you have it. So even Rainbow Valley didn't help her after all that but her gorgeous father resting in the hammock would most certainly be a help if you ask me! Of course he never liked a girl to hide her light under a bushel - isn't he just heavenly? Neither would he expect 'any daughter of Anne's would be easily won' and sharing the wisdom of his own experience of love meant he could look at his daughter 'as a fellow traveller on this road' and advise her to love anyway. Sigh.
8/1/2015 c7 Formerly known as J
Dearest kwaky, I adored that opening paragraph with its description of the manse. From the lamp at the front door painting a warm 'yellow wedge on the cold stone porch' to the winking window of the 'Calling Room' and the notion that Providence must have been looking over them, ensuring the manse wasn't burned down - just such darling details being drawn and drenching every sentence with pure k-w-a-k flavour and zest.

And I loved the image of Mother Rosemary waiting by the window in the dark for her little chicks to return and not wanting to see her reflection in the mirror. Of course she would realise that something was wrong if Jem was outside and not with Faith, but she knew that tea and sympathy were just the ticket. Unless some other announcement drove her to the port!

Then Walter, Ken and Di on the bicycle with the champagne from the Coach House with Walter balancing them 'with the necessary skill of a child from a large family' and perfectly reminding me of similar hilarious rides in my childhood and youth. I wonder if kids are allowed to do such a thing now? Probably not, such a shame! But I digress. And I'm sounding like an old lady. What about Walter resonating with Ken's voice singing 'I'm half crazy, all for the love of you!' in his ear? Ooohh la la! Is it wrong for me to secretly wish for a little romance between Ken & Walter? You have such a way of writing these delicious little details into your stories that makes me hope for an AU result, but still wanting Maud's original version to continue. I don't know if that comment makes any sense to you, but trust me, it's intended as a compliment, babe!

Then of course, Walter would be sensitive to their surroundings in the graveyard, and wanted to seek out a place with happy memories instead of tempting fate. Ah, but now the valley stirs up uncomfortable memories of Rilla for Ken, so why wouldn't he be ready to swear off women. I loved them all getting sozzled together - because why wouldn't you after such a night? And Walter's little pet names for Di - 'Di-amond' and 'Di-lemma' made me smile. He's adorable.

The interaction between Faith and Jem was so lovely. I loved that he had all the time to think of what he could say to her, yet he still blurted out "Where's Walter?" because of course he was worried about Walter's 'confounded book of poetry' written with her in mind. I can understand why he would be feeling the pressure - because what girl wouldn't be impressed by a 12 page epic poem written to her? But it was Jem's speech declaring that he knows his purpose now, and that he'd been preparing for it his whole life, while Faith imagined the white cross with his name on it that made me shiver. Such heightened emotions would most certainly prompt a declaration of his feelings and a proposal. Faith realising he 'who lived a life that was bold and blessed' had thought he was going to lose her was perfect, as was her being rendered speechless for a moment. But not for too long. And you know I love a special tree. ;)

Another glorious chapter, K. I am loving your gorgeous story more and more with each time I read it.
8/1/2015 c6 Formerly known as J
I was feeling as 'uneasy' as they were, not only at the news, but Jem's fury at his brother, such a perfectly portrayed microcosm of war, right there. And how often at that time such arguments must have occurred between 'pacifists' and those who felt it their duty to go to fight a war 'for king and country' thousands of miles from home. Then Faith feeling that Jem's outburst 'had nothing to do with the war...against Germany.' And the little insights into 'the rare yet unholy burden' of Walter's visions, even seeing the telephone wires alive with the news made me shiver in empathy for him.

Walter's dialogue with Faith was so beautiful, including how he became 'dearest, darling Walter' to her again by the end of it.

Of course, in amongst all that rowing like the hounds of hell, etc, why wouldn't they have forgotten about poor Rilla limping home on her blistered feet. Then Walter meeting Ken on the way back to the light with 'those damnable Blythe eyes' of his seeing right through Ken. And Ken feeling 'alarmed' himself - perhaps not just at the prospect of war. And I loved that Di felt compelled to run back and catch up with Walter because she couldn't bear how he looked. So why wouldn't Walter be happy about champagne at the coach house with his two favourites after such an evening as that?

Such a beautiful chapter, K. I love it.
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