On November 29th, 1910, a day before her 36th birthday, L.M. Montgomery wrote in her journal:
“I had finished my book ‘The Story Girl.’ I was sorry to finish it. Never, not even when I finished with Anne, had I laid down my pen and taken farewell of my characters with more regret. I consider “The Story Girl” the best piece of work I have yet done. It may not be as popular as Anne — somehow I don’t fancy it will. But from a literary point of view it is far ahead of it. It is an idyl of childhood on an old P.E. Island farm during one summer. I have written it from sheer love of it and revised it painstakingly — up there by the window of my dear white room. It may be the last book I shall ever write there.”
The Story Girl was in fact the last book written on Prince Edward Island, one of three novels that followed the success of Anne of Green Gables. In March of 1911 L.M. Montgomery’s grandmother Lucy Woolner Macneill passed away and the famous authoress was free to marry her fiancé Rev. Ewan Macdonald. The last three and a half months before the wedding were spent at Aunt Annie Campbell’s in Park Corner where Maud always enjoyed the company of her aunt, uncle and “merry Campbell cousins”. The Story Girl was dedicated to one of them — her beloved cousin and best friend Fredericka Campbell.
We are extremely excited to be bringing out this 2019 Kindred Spirits of PEI edition of The Story Girl based on the 1911 first edition published by L.C. Page & Company of Boston. For almost 50 years as L.M. Montgomery’s relatives we have been providing tourists from all over the world with the opportunity to experience the idyllic setting depicted in the books as well as many artifacts from the novels. The Blue Chest of Rachel Ward and its contents described in The Story Girl can be found in the Anne of Green Gables Museum in Park Corner along with information on the actual person whose blue chest was Maud’s inspiration for that particular story.
Whether you are spending your vacation on the Island and would like to take home a reminder of the happy time or you just want to have a book that you will cherish for the special connection L.M. Montgomery felt writing it, The Story Girl will not disappoint. Let Sara Stanley bring you to the amazing world of stories that encompasses the essence of Prince Edward Island and the old times that Maud grew up in. And if you are a Road to Avonlea fan, you will be thrilled to find some familiar characters and themes in this book!
The new Kindred Spirits of PEI edition of The Story Girl featuring the original cover art by George Gibbs can be picked up in one of the three Anne of Green Gables Stores on Prince Edward Island or on our online store.