Thursday, March 15, 2012

Anne of Green Gables Week: Defending Gilbert Blythe

Several months ago, during Sense and Sensibility week, I wrote a post defending Edward Ferrars.  Poor Edward has, in my experience, frequently suffered under the libelous label of "boring" in Austenite circles.  So I wrote a post defending him and pointing out all his good points and what I like about him, and I was Most Pleasantly Surprised to find that many of you are Ferrars Fans too.

Well, now I am going to write a post defending Gilbert Blythe.  My reasons are threefold.  Reason 1) Gilbert might not be labeled "boring" as poor Edward has been, but he is, sadly, often overlooked when we talk about our favorite literary heroes.  Jane Austen's heroes are overshadowing him too much.  (No offense to Austen or anything, and all that.)  Reason 2) It's Anne of Green Gables Week, and since I already posted about Anne, it makes perfect sense to write about Gilbert too.  Reason 3) Because "my reasons are threefold" sounds better than "my reasons are twofold".  I don't actually have a third reason.

I like to start my character posts by listing all the reasons why I like and dislike the character at hand, so that's what I'll do now.  The reasons I dislike Gilbert are as follows:


Hang on.  I'm sure I can think of something.

*twenty-eight minutes later* Well, to be perfectly frank (and yes, Melody, I'm aware that my name is not Frank), Gilbert is rather rude when we first meet him.  *ducks rotten vegetables*  No, really, he is.  Y'all know what happens in the famous carrot-and-slate scene, so I won't rehash it for you.  But I will say that pulling a girl's hair and insulting her in a shout-whisper is NOT the way to her heart.  "I only said that because... well, because I wanted to meet you so much."  And then he was rude again at the Christmas ball.  Which is excusable, because after all he had apologized--multiple times--and Anne continued to be Hard-Hearted and Unforgiving.

Now that we've covered Gilbert's character flaws, let's get down to the good stuff--why he is just as much of a hero as any man created by Jane Austen.  Or Dickens.  Or Elizabeth Gaskell.  Or... dare I say it?... Baroness Orczy.

*hastily moves past what might be a dangerous subject*

Marilla Cuthbert, who is well-beloved by yours truly for frequently saying exactly the right thing, does an amazing job of summing up Gilbert's character to poor blind-as-a-bat Anne.  "Anne, you have tricked something out of that imagination of yours that you call romance. Have you forgotten how [Gilbert] gave up the Avonlea school for you so that you could stay here with me? He picked you up every day in his carriage so that you could study your courses together. Don't toss it away for some ridiculous ideal that doesn't exist."

Gilbert isn't particularly dashing.  He isn't thrillingly romantic-- in fact, he makes fun of Anne's sappy romanticism.  He doesn't buckle swashes.    He doesn't write swoon-inducing poetry or sit around mooning all the time.  (Whether he lets a girl get a word in edgewise is another matter entirely.)  He's a farmer who wears ugly overalls and teaches an unruly classroom of eight grades so that he can save to go to medical school.  He is also caring, compassionate, gentle, pleasant, funny, patient and super-duper loyal.

So why, then, do we so often gloss over him or forget him in the wake of such literary greats as Mr. Darcy, Sir Percy Blakeney or Mr. Knightley?  "Poor Gilbert," a very dear friend of mine once lamented. "He always seems to be replaced by some Jane Austen hero or other in our hearts as we get older."  Well, it's quite true-- but why?  Maybe it's because Gil himself is so unpretentious and down-to-earth.  "Wilt thou give up thy garter, oh fairest of the fair? Anne, nobody talks that way!"  If Anne--or anyone--asked him what he would think of being referred to as a hero, he would probably find it hilarious.

By the way, I happen to find Gilbert hilarious.  I appreciate a hero with a good sense of humor (something Mr. Darcy sadly lacks until near the end of the book). "Well, well, well. The elegant and illustrious Miss Shirley. Relaxed while seeking out ideas for her next Rollings Reliable writing assignment, I presume."  And of course no one can forget the classic Pitching and Mooning scene.  "And just look at that sap Percival who sits around mooning all the time... in real life, she'd have pitched him."  (This quote isn't complete without the little smirk that accompanies it.)

Silliness aside, the thing I admire most about Gilbert is his unfailing loyalty. And his patience.  Which are pretty much the same thing because they go hand-in-hand.  This sounds sappy and sentimental (though not quite as bad as wilt-thou-give-up-thy-garter) but I absolutely love how Gilbert loved Anne for so long before she realized it.  (And before she deserved it.)  "This is true  love.  Do you think this happens every day?"

She ignored him (even when he rescued her from death by drowning), was rude to him, finally forgave him but then insisted on being just friends and finally turned down his proposal... and yet he didn't let any of that get in the way.  He still stuck by her and stood up for her and never let her down.  "Well, I won't change... that's the least I can promise you."

Speaking of turning down proposals... look, peoples, I love Anne and all that, but I'm seriously quite willing to push her off Moody Spurgeon's kitchen roof when she tells Gil she won't marry him in The Sequel.  That scene is heartrending.  Now, granted, she tries to do it as gently as possible (and in all honesty, you wouldn't have wanted her to say yes to someone she didn't love--er, didn't realize she loved--would you?) but that doesn't change the fact that she broke his heart.  "Anne, I've loved you as long as I can remember. I need you. Please say yes..."

And out come the Kleenex. :)

Anne.  Seriously.  Get a grip, girl.

I should take this opportunity, while we're on the subject, to point out a very serious and grave error on the part of the Anne filmmakers.  In The Sequel, they changed the story around so that Gilbert proposed to Christine Stuart after Anne turned him down.  (insert facepalm) No, Sullivan Films.  No, no, no.  That never happened in the books, not even a hint of it.  Yes, Gilbert took Christine to a party or two (maybe to make Anne jealous, maybe not) but there was never any kind of romantic interest between them-- at least not on his part.  (Christine's reappearance in Anne of Ingleside leads me to believe there might have been a little on her side, but that's another story for another time.) "There would never be anyone for me but you."

Gilbert never proposed to Christine, anyway.  He waited for Anne... and waited... and waited...
And then, finally, he did the only thing he could think of: contracted typhoid and almost died.  To get her attention, you know. ;)

It worked.  Quite nicely, in fact. Anne came to her senses and realized that her "romantic ideal" had been pulling her out of mud puddles, crashing his bicycle into the creek and rescuing her from watery graves all along.  Right under her very nose.

"It'll be three years before I finish medical school," he tells her on the bridge at the end.  "Even then there won't be any diamond sunbursts or marble halls."
"I don't want diamond sunbursts, or marble halls," says Anne (while I grope for another tissue). "I just want... you."

What is a hero, anyway? A hero is a man who is compassionate, caring and kind.  A hero is unselfish and thinks of others before himself (sometimes going as far as giving up his life).  A hero is real and down-to-earth without being boring.  A hero is wonderful, and that's what Gilbert is.

And it sure took the illustrious Miss Shirley long enough to realize it.


Lorren Lemmons said...

I already love Gilbert... I don't really need any help loving him more. But I think your post DID make me love him more. <3 *giggles*

Anonymous said...

This. Was. Amazing. =) Well done, Miss Dashwood!! I personally adore Gilbert; his sense of humor, his looks, his constancy, and the "pitching" scene is priceless!!! Besides, Gil bears a strong resemblance to my brother Jerrett. =) Just saying.. Ugh, I love Anne, but regarding Gil, she drove me absolutely nuts! I mean, could a girl be more dense? *facepalm* (sorry, just had to throw that in!) But Gilbert is certainly one of my favorite heroes. =) I loved this post!

Stephanie said...

Yes, yes, yes! Thank you for this post! I want to do one just like it, who doesn't want to gush over Gil? I suppose I shouldn't have read this one till I'd written mine, oh well...

Any way, doesn't this quote come from Princess Bride?

"This is true love. Do you think this happens every day?" I don't remeber where it is in AGG!!

Rachel Heffington said...

*Squeal!* My first reaction to reading the title of this post was a hen-cockles sort of "Has someone been downing Gil?!" And then it was, "Oooh yay! A Gilbert-post!" :D Yes. I love Gilbert. No, he's not particularly dashing, but he's got that sort of personality that will last till he's 80 and beyond. I love him, and if the guy I get someday is half as wonderful, I'll be in Heaven. :)

Emily said...

Love!!! This is so well written! And I love "And then, finally, he did the only thing he could think of: contracted typhoid and almost died. To get her attention, you know."
Made me laugh! =)

Marcia said...

lovely... you described Gil perfectly... yes, I call him Gil because he is mine!! yes, yes, I know! :)

Melody said...


Haha, my first thought when I saw this post in the dashboard was "Huh? Why does Gilbert Blythe need to be defended??" ;-)
HOWEVUH, something funny... I remember seeing that GB was one of your favorite heroes on The Assembly Rooms profiles, and I almost emailed you (in fact it's been in the back of my head somewhere) and said "Hey, so why is Gilbert one of your favorite heroes? Explain it to me. Not because I don't like him... but because I've forgotten why I like him." And here I 'as a post instead! 'ow nice. =D

*Goes into the kitchen, fetches an orange, and sits down to thoroughly enjoy the post.*

Because "my reasons are threefold" sounds better than "my reasons are twofold". I don't actually have a third reason.
Wonder why on earth that sounds sooo familiar.... heehee. ;-)

Hahaha! I love it when you randomly address me in your posts. =D (Who do you think I am, anyways, Lavinia?)

Hoooold on--did you just say he's just as much of a hero as any man created by Jane Austen? You mention her first? And then "dare" to say Baroness Orczy?
I must have heard wrong.
It should have been Miss Austen you barely dared to mention. If you were going to do it at all.
*tsk tsk's and scribbles in pocket-notebook* "Miss Dashwood slights her very own Mr. Knightley whom she fully intends to marry... Remember to scold and teaze Mousie from this day forward..."

But....Gilbert is nicer to Anne in the books. :P About her romanticism. ;-) Poor guy was simply inflicted with Mr. Harrison's lines in the movie.
*snicker-snort* but YOU knew that.

Oooh yeah! Gilbert's funny. That's why I liked him so much. =D

Now I am very curious to know who said the thing about 'Poor Gilbert'. (Which I'm more inclined to agree than to disagree with.)

Hey now. *narrows eyes* Don't go making quips about Mr. Darcy's lack of a sense of humor. He appreciates humor which is better than a sharp stick in the eye. And he's actually a good match for Elizabeth's wits. And he does make the occasional dry joke.

Hmm... I think it's time *I* did a "Defending Mr. Darcy" post, because lately it seems like it's actually needed. Shocking.
"Dear Readers: Mr. Darcy DOES smile and he DOES have a sense of humor."

You've forgotten to add among his faults that "The Blythes are far too opinionated for their own good." heehee

(There is very little orange-consuming and far too much typing going on around here.)

YEESSSS! I absolutely loved that, too. Except in the movie I didn't like that he was engaged to Christine. The idea! *glares at Kevin Sullivan*

EXACTLY!!!! I was seriously just going to say something extremely like that. ("in all honesty, you wouldn't have wanted her to say yes to someone she didn't love--er, didn't realize she loved--would you?")

Bursting out laughing because you just started talking about Christine and the grave mistake on the filmmaker's part just like I did...
"I knew it and she knew I knew it." =)
*With Amelia-Warne-voice-infliction* Oooh! She returns in Ingleside? How intriguing!

Mousie, you always make me choke on my oranges.
And then, finally, he did the only thing he could think of: contracted typhoid and almost died. To get her attention, you know. ;)

Ah! Got to the last part right on my last slice. Your posts are perfectly orange-timed, deary.

Lovely post. As always.

And, um, soary Everybody Else who has to scroll waaaay down past my excessively long comment that really should have been an e-mail...

beastsbelle said...

An excellent post, Miss Dashwood. Like you, I'm another Edward and Gilbert fan (although those other literary guys are pretty amazing, too!). ;) I wholeheartedly agree that Gil and others get overlooked and accused of being boring, when in reality they are some of the most noble heroes of literature.

I happened to marry my high school sweetheart, who is very Gil-like. He's a kind, honest, straight-forward guy who patiently puts up with my rants and romantic "pitching and mooning". ;) (We actually watched "Anne of Green Gables" and "Anne of Avonlea" together for our honeymoon, and he told me it helped him understand me a lot! Now we have 3 dramatic daughters, and when all of us are watching Anne of Green Gables together, he just shakes his head and chuckles, because he knows he's stuck with 4 of us.)

Yikes, here I go again, writing an entire post in my comment! :} I'll get to the point. I'd like to encourage all the Miss Shirleys out there to take Marilla's advice and not cast aside the Gilberts and the Edwards of the world for the more exciting, dashing heroes they dream of. Our sweet, everyday guys will never stand a chance competing with the Mr. Darcys and Sir Percys of our imaginations. And come on, I bet even Sir Percy forgot to take out the trash every once in a while! ;) (Well, okay, he probably had servants who took out the trash...but you get my point!) :}

Lauren said...

I completely agree! This is the best review I've ever seen of Gilbert! I think that a true hero needs to be down-to-earth and real. Mr. Darcy and other characters are nice, but they feel fictional. Sorry if I'm putting down Mr. Darcy too much.

Gilbert is one of my favourite hero's for sure!

Julie @ Read Handed said...

To me, nothing is more romantic than a guy on whom you know you can always depend. That's what makes a life together - not grand gestures or "mooning" about. I always get angry with Anne for turning down Gilbert - she's so blind! They are such the perfect couple.

Anne-girl said...

Why am I always the last one to comment? Then everything has already been said and all I can do is say "Ditto what they all said". Gilbert un-dashing? HOW DAYUH YOU!Gilbert is not un-dashing.

Miss Dashwood said...

*Miss Dashwood opens her Blogger dashboard this morning, sees all the comments waiting, faints, then sets down to the business of replying to them all*

Heehee, I didn't think I needed any help loving Gil more either, but I was quite happy to be proved wrong as I wrote the post. ;)

What you said. :) So glad to find there are so many other Gilbert fans out there... "kindred spirits aren't so scarce as I once thought!" I think when I finish my period drama heroines series I'll do one on heroes.
Never apologize for facepalms, m'dear. :)

Yep, that quote does indeed come from the Princess Bride (don't you just love that movie?). I should have cited it, my bad! The post does seem to imply that that quote comes from Anne... oops.

Yep, exactly. Gilbert will always be the same. He won't change. :) That's yet another thing I love about him... especially in the later books, he's still exactly the same!

Heehee, glad you liked the typhoid bit. "I only did that because... well, because I wanted you to marry me so much." :P

Um, no. Sorry dear, he's not yours, he's MINE. :)

Miss Dashwood said...

Dearling, that friend of mine who said that about Gilbert.... That Was You. See the comments in this post.

Haha, how loverly that I answered your question without you even ausking! A Tween moment. Definitely. :)

My sister needs the computer so I'll reply to the rest of your comment in an e-mail laytuh. :) That talent of timing my posts to coincide with your oranges is really quite easy once you know how to do it. It's all in the wrist. :P

Anonymous said...

Ooh, Gilbert... one of my favorite subjects. (Just kidding...)

I think every character in every book should have some defects - otherwise, they'd be perfect! A good author will give their characters weaknesses, but enough strengths to make you like them. (My least favorite scene in 'Emma' is when she makes that rude comment about Mrs. Bates. Ugh, I get so mad at her because she says it without thinking or caring! But *ahem* this is a post about Gilbert Blythe, not Emma Woodhouse.) Yes, I do think Gil was extremely rude in the beginning (and a little in the second one - the "Pitching and mooning?" scene), but think about it, you guys. If he'd just walked up to Anne and said, "Hey, my name's Gil. Your hair is really pretty," what do you think Anne would do? With her romantic perspective on life, she'd probably fall in love with him or something. Then there wouldn't be any awesome scenes like when she almost drowns and he saves her, the Christmas ball, the first proposal, when Gil's sick, etc. (One thing I personally don't like about Gilbert is his hair. It has issues!) But enough on all that... this comment is getting too long. : )

I really think that Gilbert was the true hero. (Of course, Sir Percy, Mr. Knightly, etc are pretty awesome, too!) But Gil's love was truest. Even after Anne dumped him and left, he stayed true to her. He might have tried to forget her and started seeing Christine, but he still loved Anne. (And that quote about him giving up the school for her... *sigh*)

The "Please say yes..." scene. That very nearly made me cry when we watched it last week. (Of course, I didn't because I was SO MAD!!) Really, Anne?! Can't you just SEE that he's the one for you?!

And the whole thing about Gilbert being engaged to Christine... arg. That makes me mad, too!

It's really kind of sad just how long it took Anne to realize that she really loved Gilbert. It was only after she found her "ideal" that she realized that, as you said, her TRUE ideal had been crashing his bike into the creek and rescuing her when she had been supposedly fishing "for lake trout." He waited SO long for her... (Excuse me while I go find a tissue...)

Excellent post, Miss Dashwood. I have been a Gilbert fan (and an Edward fan) for as long as I could remember, but now I appreciate him more. Thank you!


Anonymous said...

Thank you, beastsbelle, for that encouragement! It really is too often that we throw aside the TRUE heroes for what we think is "our ideal." Sad, but true.

Thanks again!

Jessica said...

Gilbert has always been my favorite "hero". ;-) Since I was about 8. Haha And all my friends over the years swooned over him, as well. So, evidentally we found him dashing and romantic in some sense of the terms, anyway. Ha
Of course, now that I am an "old married woman", I have put all such nonsense behind me. Ahem...;-)

Ella said...

Your post made me LOL a lot!
Gilbert Blythe is one of my favorite heros alongside Edmund Pevensie,Aragorn,and others.
Thanks for the delightful post!

Miss Dashwood said...

Beast's Belle,
Aww, your story about you and your husband was SO sweet! I love reading about real-life romances like that. And how nice that your daughters are following in your footsteps, heehee.
The comment about Sir Percy taking out the trash made my day. Just so you know. :D

Well, I am a HUGE Mr. Darcy fan, but I agree, I really appreciate Gil's down-to-earth-ness. :)

Exactly! Mooning about "fairest of the fair" isn't going to last past the honeymoon... it's loyalty and patience and real love that will last forever. Which is what Anne and Gilbert eventually have. Love their romance...

*hastily takes it back* Okay, okay, I just meant that he's not as dashing as some other heroes I could mention. But still great. :)

Haha, very true! If Gil had said something romantical at the beginning, we wouldn't have had a story. :D So I suppose it's good that he was rude at first.

Mrs. Elton--um, I mean Jessica,
Haha, an old married woman, eh? Yep, I swooned over him when I was eight, too. (Still do occasionally... don't tell anyone.) Heehee.

Hayden said...

Thank You!!! Gilbert is AWESOME. And hilarious :D Who doesn't like a hilarious hero?

Melody said...

*falls over laughing*

Did I really just do that?? Really???

Wow. No wonder I wasn't inclined to disagree. Hahaha, sometimes I wonder if I'm going crazy....
The thought briefly crossed my mind that it sounded like the way I would word something, but I honestly had no idea. hahahaha, I'm such an idiot.

*Major facepalm*

Ah, well, for what do we live but to make sport for our neighbours...and laugh at them in our turn, what? I must provide plenty of diversion for you with my whims and inconsistencies!

The rest of your comment MMG too and Tween moments are really fun and Mom wants to get on here and I'm looking forward to your email. =)

Alexandra said...

My dear!

LOVED this post to bits. SO good. My theory is that we all wish for a man like Sir Percy...and usually end up with a Gilbert (NOT in a settling for less way...just reality. :-)) Of course there are mom ended up with a Percy, but then rarely does anyone have that luck. :-D I have always had difficulty comparing guys to my dad. Hehe.

Anyway!!! Gilbert is awesome. Sir Percy...still the best, can't be denied. But Gil is just...awesomeness.

(But I'm happy to still be wishing for a Percy on my end.)

And Darcy fans can go jump in a lake. No pun intended. :-P

(Before I am eaten alive...I AM ONLY JOKING. :-D)

Rachel Olivia said...

Gilbert is not very well-developed and does not have a great amount of personality in the earlier books (KEY word-"books"-the movie does not count-the movie writers did not create the character and they relied on Mr. Harrison and Laurie for some of the major parts). Read the books people! I read a review of the Emily series that pointed out that side men are more developed in L.M. Montgomery's books and the heros were vague and (I think) the review tried to link this to Montgomery's loveless and incompatible marriage (Montgomery herself resembled Ruby Gillis and Philippa Gordon more than Anne). Teddy from the Emily books (which I ADORE-read them) is undeveloped, but the two other guys are quite interesting. Gilbert in the books does not try to correct Anne at all because he is trying to do whatever he can to be on her good side, and he was much more of a Romantic himself in the books too. In later books as the doctor he develops more of a distinct (and different) personality-sarcastic and funny. Oh, and the line from the movie that had Marilla saying Anne had invented an idea of romance belonged to Philippa in the books which ended up being a serious and hilarious line at the same time. Oh, my I SOOOOO want to remake the Anne movies! So many good characters were left out.
Back to heros-I cannot understand why neither Gilbert nor Teddy was developed well. She knew how to great Romantic interesting men (take Mr. Meredith, Walter, and Owen Ford), as well as humorous or otherwise intriguing men, so I cannot understand this mysteriousness. Oh, and I have to go read your Edward Ferrar's post. I am not a Darcy fanatic-I like him (he is tolerable I suppose, but-Juuuust Kiiiddding-I really do like him), but Captain Wentworth (at least in the 2008 movie-I am a hypocrite I know-oh this movie blends BOTH of JA's Persuasion endings to perfection).

Jemimah said...

Gilbert and Anne are SO cute together!
I think they are probably on the top of the list of my favourite movie couples.

Anna said...

You summed him up wonderfully. Gilbert is completely overlooked. He is one of the best movie men ever. Ever. Period.

Melody said...

Just you wait, Alexandra, just you wait!!!

Um... sorry. Too much My Fair Lady. :P

Charity U said...

He's a great guy...but not quite as great as the wonderful hero Baroness Orczy created. Close, maybe, yes, but not quite. IMHO. ;)

An Old-Fashioned Girl said...

Amy- Very well done! I just love Gilbert!*sighs*

Bri said...

Your descriptions had me laughing through the whole post:"And then, finally, he did the only thing he could think of: contracted typhoid and almost died. To get her attention, you know. ;)"

This post has given me a renewed appreciation for wonderful loving Gil.
I think the real reason he gets overshadowed by Jane Austen's heroes is because in the movie he isn't given enough screen time. You have to admit it, I'm sure everyone has at one time or another during Anne of Green Gables said, oh come on, where's the parts with Gilbert in them? I'm waiting for the *good* scenes... :)

Kelsey said...

Oh thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Gilbert Blythe is one of my favorite heroes, and it is sometimes quite irritating to see him so drastically eclipsed by others like Mr. Darcy (not that I have anything against Mr. Darcy, just that I really like Gil too...:). I'm very glad you posted this!

Yeah, so I know this is nearly a year-old post at the time I'm commenting, but it showed up on the bottom of your latest post at the "You may also like..." part, so I'm only now reading it. :) All the same, you expressed my sentiments exactly!!! (Even down to the film makers' mistake concerning Christine Stuart...I was like "NO!!! That didn't happen!!!" It makes me quite mad... :) Ahem.

Great post!

Hubers said...

I love Gilbert! I always got made at Anne for being so mean to him.

Has anyone had a problem with having a friend (or friends or they themselves) that think that Wesley on Princess Bride is way better and handsomer than Gilbert?! I most certainly do and lets just say I think they are a little touched in the head :) Okay...enough of my venting :)


Tomatish said...

Gilbert is my first love and will always be a hero in my eyes. No other character ever matched him except for Mr. Knightly, who has the advantage of being older (I am young my self, but... well)

Anonymous said...

Miss Dashwood,

I am on an important quest for a quote (that I was told about by someone else--I have never read it myself) and I have only a vague description for it, but you seem like you might be able to help, so if you're up for it, I would appreciate the favor: I was told once about a quote in one of the Anne of Green Gables BOOKS (I'm not sure if it's in the movie), and it was definitely said by either Gilbert or Anne (to the other); I think it was Gilbert, but I'm not sure. Anyway, this quote is going to be special and moving (enough to be mentioned to me), and it has to do with some combination of friendship/companionship/faithfulness/nostalgia/joy about the relationship/adventures. I know that's an extremely broad category given that a lot of their relationship centers on that, but if there are any that you can think of or find as possible candidates, I would love to know about them. Thanks so much! My email is


Eponine Castleonacloud said...

Hi Amy!
I totally agree that Gilbert is cool! Also i just want to say that i have tagged you for the sunflower blogger award, here is a link to it: thanks,

Anonymous said...

The scene that always makes me break down though, is when she sees him on the train platform and he's already moving away from her. That one moment just destroys me (maybe because there's also a similar moment in Downton Abbey (Did they plan that? Because that's just sick), or maybe not) because it was that moment when she realized she really did love him. And if he would have died, the very last time she would have seen him was this moment, when he was too far away for her to say a word.

Janhavi R said...

Miss Dashwood, please excuse the inappropriate lateness of my comment. Gilbert Blythe as Anne's ideal man improves upon acquaintance. During my first reading, I felt that the circumstances of Anne's refusal were inevitable. But on further rereading, I realized that not only was he her perfect match, he was way more considerate and loyal and willing to make efforts of his own to win his lady than Mr. Darcy, my former paramour. The tipping point in Anne and Gil's relationship came when he started treating Anne as his equal and not as a Goddess. Thank you for this lovely post. So glad kindred spirits still exist.