Originally published: 1913
Author: Eleanor B Porter
Set in: Vermont
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Page count: 239
Reading dates: 16-22 February 2018
Pollyanna is an orphan who is sent to live with her Aunt Polly in Vermont. Her Aunt is initially cold towards Pollyanna but Pollyanna has a bright and cheery outlook on life and that soon rubs off on her Aunt. Pollyanna plays the “glad game” whereby she always looks to find the best in every situation and find something to be glad about. She invariably improves the lives of everyone she meets, including the bedridden Mrs Snow and the miserable bachelor Mr Pendleton.
Disaster strikes when Pollyanna is hit by a car and loses the use of her legs – she is bedridden and finds it impossible to play the Glad game anymore. Soon however, the townsfolk start to visit and tell her what a difference she has made to their lives and gradually she starts to feel happy again and glad for the difference she has made to them all.
I first read this as a 11-year-old after borrowing it from the school library – it was very different to my usual choice of reading material at the time and I really enjoyed it. I’m pleased to have revisited it again as it’s a lovely feel good book (so long as you don’t mind Pollyanna’s perpetual optimism and cheeriness!)