Daddy-Long-Legs and Dear Enemy (Penguin Classics)
Jean Webster, Elaine Showalter
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One of the great novels of American girlhood, Jean Webster's Daddy-Long-Legs (1912) follows the adventures of an orphan named Judy Abbott, whose letters to her anonymous male benefactor trace her development as an independent thinker and writer. Its sequel, Dear Enemy (1915), follows the progress of Judy's former orphanage, now run by her friend Sallie McBride, who struggles to give her young charges hope and a new life.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
now, and have been here for six days; this is the first time they would let me sit up and have a pen and paper. The head nurse is very bossy. But I’ve been thinking about it all the time and I shan’t get well until you forgive me. Here is a picture of the way I look, with a bandage tied around my head in rabbit’s ears. Doesn’t that arouse your sympathy? I am having sublingual gland swelling. And I’ve been studying physiology all the year without ever hearing of sublingual glands. How futile a
we’re pleased—but oh, if we could only beat the Juniors! I’d be willing to be black and blue all over and stay in bed a week in a witch-hazel compress. Sallie has invited me to spend the Christmas vacation with her. She lives in Worcester, Massachusetts. Wasn’t it nice of her? I shall love to go. I’ve never been in a private family in my life, except at Lock Willow, and the Semples were grown-up and old and don’t count. But the McBrides have a houseful of children (anyway two or three) and a
oh, so horribly logical! Gordon somehow seems to stand for the life I belong to,—of country clubs and motors and dancing and sport and politeness,—a poor, foolish, silly life, if you will, but mine own. And I have missed it. This serving-society business is theoretically admirable and compelling and interesting, but deadly stupid in its working details. I am afraid I was never born to set the crooked straight. I tried to show Gordon about and make him take an interest in the babies, but he
require, I should sit up until morning every night. However, bring it in. I usually manage half an hour of recreation after dinner, and though I had wanted to glance at Wells’s latest novel,22 I will amuse myself instead with your feeble-minded family. Life of late is unco steep. Obligingly yours, S. MCB. THE JOHN GRIER HOME, April 17. Dear Gordon: Thank you for the tulips, likewise the lilies of the valley. They are most becoming to my blue Persian bowls. Have you ever heard of the
on his nose, and sent him off to look over the place in charge of my two oldest urchins. They collected six friends and organized a base-ball game. Jimmie came back blown, but enthusiastic, and consented to prolong his visit over the week-end, though after the dinner I gave him he has decided to take his future meals at the hotel. As we sat with our coffee before the fire, I confided to him my anxiety as to what should be done with the chicks while their new brooder is building. You know Jimmie.