Rachel With An E? – Anne With An E? Sense a theme here? My blog is in homage to Anne Shirley of the Anne of Green Gables books by Lucy Maud Montgomery. As like Anne I to get frustrated when people mis-spell my name as Rachael when it is Rachel. Also like Anne I’m always reminding people my name is Rachel With An E! The Anne of Green Gables series are some of my all time favourite books. But, I confess until recently I had not read past the first two books Anne of Green Gables (1908) and Anne of Avonlea (1909).
On my extended trip to Scotland last August I took time out to visit one of my favourite parts of Scotland; the small fishing village and artists town of Kirkcudbright, Dumfries and Galloway in south-west Scotland. I had deliberately picked up Daisy Chain: a novel of The Glasgow Girls by Maggie Ritchie which is set in Kirkcudbright as well as Glasgow and other foreign locations.
For as long as I can remember I have always loved books, reading, libraries, and all book and reading related ephemera – I have an obscene amount of bags from book shops and numerous book marks! I get my love of reading from my grand-father who was a voracious reader of many genres and types of books. He would have made an ideal English literature or history teach had his life circumstances been different.
The lack of a teaching job didn’t stop him handing down his enthusiasm to me and I have many fond memories of going to the library with him on Saturday mornings to return my books and inevitably borrowing even more. Nothing thrilled me more as a child when the librarian stamped my book which made the book mine for the next week or however long it took to read it.
The kitsch red text and bright turquoise background of the cover of Dear, Mrs Bird by A.J. Pearce piqued my interest from my local libraries ‘Recent Reads’ table. * The doubly beautiful end papers of a stylized bird holding an envelope in it’s beak drew me further in to read the first few pages** and instantly I knew that I would love reading this book as it covers several of my favourite historical topics at once; women’s magazines, women’s roles in World War Two and the struggle women faced to get themselves recognized in jobs in the early to mid-twentieth century.