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The Friday Book Club Book of the Month || The Secret Garden

Since its publication in 1911, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden has continued to charm readers from generation to generation.

Readers have become acquainted with Mary, Dickon, and Colin, and have become part of their adventures in reviving a decade-old garden which wilted through neglect.

This book covers so many themes such as self-discovery, self-care, and care for others, that our team have decided that this book will jump-start the first of (hopefully many) Book Club discussions, starting on July! We are excited to invite you to our discussions, which will be online, due to the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Interested participants can sign up here, and we will be providing you email updates with regard to schedules and things! We’re so, so excited to have you on board!

Image credit here.

Friday Facts || Awesome trivia from LM Montgomery’s “The Story Girl”

Two weeks ago, a review of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s The Story Girl went live on this blog. Hopefully, you’ve already had the opportunity to read this gem of a book.

Raving aside, there are other awesome things about this novel–things I didn’t know the first time I read The Story Girl. Luckily, the novel had an Afterword which provided its readers a view or a glimpse of LM Montgomery’s world. Here are a few things I would like to share to you all.

  1. LM. Montgomery, also known as Lucy Maud Montgomery, the author of this book was more known as the author of the widely popular Anne of Green Gables. She has written twenty novels, and over sixty short stories.
  2. Montgomery’s Scottish forbears played a great part in this novel, as she grew up listening and telling anecdotes, legends, and myths from Scotland.
  3. This became the basis, or rather, background in creating the titular character.
  4. The character Peter Craig has a resemblance to Montgomery’s former sweetheart Herman Leard.
  5. As Montgomery was leaving her home island–Prince Edward Island, she suddenly became nostalgic.
  6. Montgomery’s teenage years were the inspiration of The Story Girl.

Friday Feature || MARYJOY JACOB: Features and Content Manager, Teacher, Writer, Beauty Queen

“Helping others and leaving a significant difference in their life delight my soul. That, I think is part of unleashing my life’s purpose. I dream of contributing to the body of knowledge that’s why I pursue my research despite the ordeals along the way. Publishing my work and presenting it would make my heart leap. It would be a dream come true.”

Friday Find || The magic of The Story Girl by L.M. Montgomery

Image credit here.

Growing up, my older sister and mother exposed me to really good children’s books, and I fell in love with some of them. Case in point: Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables series. That spirited redhead stole my heart the moment my eyes clapped on the first page. It was the same for the next eight books of the series.

I was looking for Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A Little Princess when I saw this book. And literally, I forgot about the book I was supposed to buy, and bought The Story Girl instead.

And it was totally worth it.

Mythology, fairy tales, village anecdotes, treasured family history were the repertoire of Sara Stanley’s stories. While being the titular character, she is not the only central character. It is her, her cousins and her friends, that merry band of children having various adventures–canvassing for collections for a school library, buying a picture of God, whom Sara declared, looked like a cross old man. There’s also the chapter of the ghostly bell, which terrified the children and amused an uncle.

The Story Girl also tackles other issues–vanity, friendship, illness, and religion.

In writing this book, Montgomery used the first-person narrative, in the person of Beverley King, reminiscing his boyhood in a fictional village in Prince Edward Island, Canada.

Beverley travels to Carlisle, Prince Edward Island, with his younger brother Felix, after their father has been assigned by his firm to take charge of a new branch in Brazil. Without a mother to help look after them, the boys were sent to live with their father’s family.

Except from accounts in family letters, the boys set off to Prince Edward Island, not knowing what to expect. And from that, the boys take the reader into that same journey.

It was a delightful one indeed.

The Story Girl is available in paperback or in Kindle format. A free version is available here too.

Blog || Queenly Quest

The true empowerment lies in the ability of a woman to exemplify beauty, brain, and blessing by being an inspiration to multitude of people around her. It is not being a chauvinist but a way of showcasing the jewels women have to offer in this world full of judgments. However, what really defines a true queen? Is she somebody who embodies perfect aesthetics or somebody who possesses an uncommon beauty?

The command of one’s self does not rely on personality alone. Wit will play a great part in the essence of being a woman.  So do not feel overly anxious physically because obviously beauty is highly subjective. As long as you have the magic of confidence, beauty just shines through you.

Today’s standards of looks will always alter so why not concentrate on the constant? Goodness is one of the constant values that will never fade in someone’s list of qualifications. Aside from such, excellence matters because every woman should have something to say and that she should be eloquent enough to bring about changes.

Many girls would feel narcissistic because of the notion that beauty is gauged through physical aspects. Nevertheless, many people fall short in realizing that the combination of intellectual, social, and emotional well-being are tantamount to the perfect face and figure the society has stereotyped queens.

Many prominent individuals are beautiful but they do not delve deeper in that thought– for their life has bigger sense of purpose. These queens also have reasons too but what’s more endearing is if they could walk an extra mile to be a genuine voice for  a myriad of people who do not have the grit to speak.

I know individuals who are excellent enough to represent our country in varied tilts. One of them is my inspiration. She has been my pageant sister too who left heartprints in my life. I can never forget her because she made a difference.

She is Ms. Joana Verdeflor whose beauty, wit, and confidence have been instruments of change. I was left in awe upon knowing that she has achieved greater heights and her love for reading and writing were great platforms to cascade learning. That opened my eyes to the fact that if she can make it, why can’t we? Indeed, she is a true queen—unique in multifaceted ways like a diamond which shines in every side.