Daddy-Long-Legs

ISBN: 1857159136
ISBN 13: 9781857159134
By: Jean Webster

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Genres

Classic Classics Currently Reading Favorites Fiction Historical Fiction Romance To Read Ya Young Adult

About this book

First published in 1912, this is a modern version of Cinderella, told in the form of letters. It is the love-story of an orphan and her unknown benefactor, written and illustrated by the great-niece of Mark Twain.

Reader's Thoughts

Hallie

Can't help it - the romance is creepy, but I love Judy so much, and her delight in being in college and having nice things and friends and books - so wonderful. It's been a favourite of mine forever, and one I enjoyed reading to the girls too.

Afsane

كتابي كه در دوره طفوليت من بهترين همدم من بود. اين كتاب بهترين هديه اي است كه در طول عمرم دريافت كردم. نيماي عزيزم روحت شاد.

Rashika (is tired)

If anyone ever asked me to recommend a classic, this is what I would recommend. I love what I've read by Jane Austen but this, THIS is truly a timeless story. Almost a century later after it was first published I find myself relating to this young girl. Her story comes to life for me through her letters to Daddy Long Legs.Sitting here, writing this, I can most definitely say that this book lived up to everything I had hoped it would.I didn't actually know this book existed until quite recently and as soon as I read the summary, I KNEW this book was something I would love. When I got my hands on a copy 2 months ago, I decided to read it at a rather slow pace. I read around a letter a day and sometimes I'd skip days too until today, when I decided I really did want to finish this and finish it I did. I have no idea how to put how I feel about this book in words because truly, I am mesmerized by her story. I feel so elated and happy that I all I want to do is sing and dance and imagine how everything will work out afterwards, how their story will carry on. Judy is just such a wonderful character, she is funny, strong and so full of life and her story is wonderful. I am obviously going to fail at writing something coherent so I am just going to go back and re-read certain things ;)If you haven't read this, please, go read it.

Antof9

Who knew there was a book for this movie? I certainly didn't. This book was truly charming. It's entirely made up of letters from Judy to her "Daddy Long Legs", except for the very beginning, which introduces her while she's still in the John Grier Home.One of the parts that struck me the most was her comments on reading Jane Eyre. Having just (very recently) finished that myself, I was definitely in that mindset when reading this book. I thought that immediately, and it seemed perfectly natural that it would come up in this book too."I sat up half of last night reading Jane Eyre. . . When I was reading about little Jane's troubles in the charity school, I got so angry that I had to go out and take a walk. I understood exactly how she felt. . . Our lives were absolutely monotonous and uneventful."Obviously there's more, but that section certainly struck me. Even in the midst of a truly enjoyable book that is definitely more positive than negative, there is honestly and harsh reality of the way some things happen in this world. I appreciated the way the author handled this (not just this section, but all references toward orphanages) in this style of writing.This is truly a charming little book. Enjoyable in every aspect. Read it if you get a chance :) It'll take no time at all!

Victoria Evangelina Belyavskaya

~MY FIRST BOOK IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE~This is the first book I read in English; I was about 15-16 years old at the time. I studied the language with my beloved teacher, Galina Vasilievna, in Tashkent (Uzbekistan). I had 2-3 private classes a week, and she would usually give me an obscene amount of home work - well, thanks for that! After some time spent with study books, I came to a point when she suggested 'additional reading' and gave me this book. I was supposed to prepare a couple of pages of reading once a week. By 'prepare' I mean exactly what it sounds like - PREPARE. Translate every word - understand it in context. Write it down. Translate, write down the definition and construct in writing 5 sentences with the phrases underlined by my teacher. Usually those were expressions, like "dragged itself to a close" - Gosh, I still remember it!Well, I have to say that I have never finished the book in the way Galina Vasilievna wanted me to. In about half a year I just wanted to know "what's next?!!" and flipped through the many remaining pages in one evening, grasping the meaning despite the still words I did not know. Proud, I said to the teacher "I can tell you the story!" "It is not reading, my dear! I need you to learn the expressions!" she replied as calmly, as usually.Many books have passed through my hands and mind, shaping my soul and life path since then. Most of them have been in English language. I studied for my Master's degree reading and writing everything in English. For several years I used to write a weekly column in English for a newspaper. For about four years [at the time of this review] 85% of my communications are in English. I am thrilled with the Gift to read English authors in their own language. And the door to all of this is my dear old teacher and the story of Daddy-Long-Legs and little Jerusha, writing him letters and falling in love... As for the book itself: it was cute. I may read it once again, just to have a complete picture, non-fragmented with my initial page-a-week jumps...Victoria Evangelina Belyavskaya

Zen Cho

Man, I love this book. It was my first introduction to epistolary fiction, and it's just so adorable. Now the fact that she called her romantic interest Daddy throughout the entire book wigs me a bit, and Jervis is so high-handed and lacking in candour that I'm deeply suspicious of him, but I'm gonna put down Judy's trilling that he's right most of the time because he's years older than her to the mushy-brainedness of the first flush of love, and believe that she's going to be able to handle him. Still, the whole love subplot, Pygmalion and Galatea, is dodgy in the extreme. I like the romance subplot in the sequel-of-sorts Dear Enemy better, but that book has lots of other dodgy things.Things I didn't like when I read this as a wee kidlet: Jervis? What the hell kinda name is that for your romantic interest? Sheesh. When the only nickname you can come up with is Jervie, you know, you might wanna consider changing the name.Things I liked back then, and still like now: Judy's resolute independence. Her delight in the books she's catching up on, which everyone else has read: Alice in Wonderland, Sherlock Holmes, etc. etc. The letter about Pepys, because that was the first time I'd ever heard of the dude. The doodles. The digressions on clothes.Coming to it fresh now I think I'd probably find it a little precious, but I can't imagine not being charmed by Judy's spirit and sense of humour.

Endah

Daddy long legs dalam bahasa Inggris adalah sebutan untuk laba-laba berkaki panjang. Namun, oleh Jerusha Abbott, kata tersebut ia pakai untuk menjuluki seorang pria budiman yang telah menyantuninya bersekolah di perguruan tinggi. Pria baik hati itu hanya mensyaratkan Judy (nama kecil Jerusha) menulis laporan kemajuan studinya dalam bentuk surat setiap bulan. Sebuah syarat yang sangat mudah, apalagi bagi seorang gadis yang memang senang menulis seperti Judy. Maka, gadis yatim piatu itu pun meninggalkan Panti Asuhan John Grier setelah selama delapan belas tahun menjadi penghuni di dalamnya.Kisah yang sesungguhnya pun dimulai, dari awal hingga akhir semua tersaji dalam bentuk surat Judy kepada Daddy Long Legs. Dengan gaya tulisan yang menyenangkan, Judy bercerita tentang berbagai hal yang dialaminya selama menjadi mahasiswa: pelajaran-pelajarannya, teman-teman, liburan, buku-buku, cowok-cowok, dan apa saja yang dipikirkannya. Ia menulis seolah-olah bercakap-cakap langsung dengan si pembaca suratnya. Ia menulis kejadian hari demi hari sehingga kau akan merasa seakan-akan tengah membaca sebuah buku harian seorang gadis yang periang, cerdas, dan penuh harga diri. Ceritanya cewek banget deh.Meski tidak pernah berjumpa dengan Daddy Long Legs yang misterius itu, namun dalam hati Judy telah tumbuh benih-benih kasih sayang kepada lelaki yang–sesuai persyaratan–tidak pernah membalas surat-suratnya itu. Malah, diam-diam Judy telah menganggap sang tuan budiman yang minta dipanggil dengan nama Mr. John Smith ini sebagai ayah yang tidak pernah dimilikinya. Perasaan tersebut lama kelamaan menerbitkan harapan pada diri Judy suatu saat akan bisa berjumpa langsung dengan penolongnya tersebut. Novel klasik karya Jean Webster ini terbit pertama kali di Amerika pada 1912. Ketika itu, tentu saja, surat masih menjadi pilihan utama sebagai alat komunikasi yang efisien setelah telepon, terutama jika kita harus menyampaikan sebuah laporan yang panjang pada seseorang yang berada jauh dari kita. Dan sekalipun novel ini berbentuk surat-surat, tetap menyenangkan membacanya. Segar, jenaka, dan kadang-kadang menyentuh hati. Jika kau pernah membaca Anne of Green Gables (Lucy M Montgomery), kau akan menemukan spirit yang sama di dalamnya. Kau akan berjumpa dengan seorang gadis dengan karakter mirip Anne: cantik, cerdas, humoris, suka berkhayal, dan tidak pernah mengeluhkan nasib malangnya sebagai seorang anak yatim piatu. Sejak kemunculannya, Daddy Long Legs terus memperoleh sambutan hangat dari khalayak pembaca, bahkan kemudian diangkat menjadi sandiwara panggung serta film layar lebar. Salah satunya yang cukup terkenal dibuat tahun 1955 dengan bintang Fred Astaire. Buku yang menarik ini layak dan aman dibaca oleh seluruh golongan umur. Dua tahun berikutnya, terbit buku lanjutannya: Dear Enemy. ***

Deborah Markus

You should read this review if:1. You haven’t read this book and need to know why you should,or2. You’ve read this book, but need to know about the connection between Daddy-Long-Legs and J.D. Salinger.(Okay, or: 3. Regardless of whether or not you’ve read this book, you now think I’ve been smoking something I shouldn’t have been. Please read this review so I can convince you otherwise. Thank you.)There is something to be said for not having read the classics as a kid – provided, of course, you steal time as an adult to catch up on everything you’ve missed. There’s nothing like finding out the fun way, in your 20s or 30s or 40s, that the reason a particular work is called a classic is that it’s absolutely wonderful.This isn’t always the case. I can’t guarantee you’ll shriek, “Where have you BEEN all my life?” if you pick up, say, Gargantuan and Pantagruel. But I’ve had two separate friends express their startled delight that Anna Karenina is not only not too hard for mere mortals to read, but is in fact a moving and engrossing read (and a ripping good one at that). I myself missed out on To Kill A Mockingbird until I was in my 40s, because everybody only talked about the important moral issues it discusses, and nobody mentioned how hard its writing kicks arse. (I only finally read it because I got too embarrassed about having to admit that I hadn’t and I’m a lousy liar.)So: Daddy-Long-Legs is an absolute delight. I figured it would be cute and, given how long ago it was written, probably pretty sappy. That’s okay. I can deal with a little sap. Sometimes I even like it.But the young narrator, Jerusha Abbott, is mercilessly sharp and laugh-out-loud funny. Put it to you this way: My son decided to read this after he kept cracking up from all the bits I read out loud to him at the breakfast table. He’s a sixteen-year-old EDM aficionado. If you’re still holding out, I don’t know what to tell you.This is the story of a girl who insists on being her own spiky, sharp, funny self in spite of growing up in an orphanage whose goal, as Jerusha puts it, “is to turn the ninety-seven orphans into ninety-seven twins.” This is not “virtue rewarded” in the usual sense of the phrase. Jerusha is given a scholarship to college thanks to her excellent writing. The essay that snagged her this scholarship was a bitterly funny piece about the orphanage. I LOVE the fact that Jerusha escapes a horrible situation by speaking up about how awful it is. Yes, I’ve been reading too many Regency-era novels about how women who suffer ills and abuses patiently are rewarded. This book was the perfect antidote.Here’s something else I didn’t expect from this book: a Salinger connection.I recently reread The Catcher in the Rye. If you’ve read it, too, you’ll probably recall that the narrator, Holden Caulfield, starts this book having less than a wonderful day. Specifically, he just found out he’s being expelled from his swanky boarding school. He goes to his room to try to relax with a book:“I’d only read about three pages, though, when I heard somebody coming through the shower curtains. Even without looking up, I knew right away who it was. It was Robert Ackley, this guy that roomed right next to me. ...Nobody ever called him anything except ‘Ackley.’ Not even Herb Gale, his own roommate, ever called him ‘Bob’ or even ‘Ack.’ If he ever gets married, his own wife’ll probably call him ‘Ackley.’”That’s a funny passage. It also emphasizes Ackley’s name. It becomes clear very quickly that Holden isn’t fond of Ackley at the best of times. Today he finds him particularly annoying because Ackley won’t let him read. No matter how often Holden hints that he’s reading, or at least he’d like to be, annoying Ackley just won’t leave.Okay. Big deal. Way to be random, Deborah.EXCEPT.Here is a wonderful passage from Daddy-Long-Legs, part of a chapter in which the narrator has been listing all the reasons it’s been a lousy day at school. (Jerusha has mentioned earlier that the best part of every day for her is the evening, when she curls up to read – not assigned reading, but “just plain books” to make up for all the lost time at the bookless orphanage.)“Friday is sweeping day, and the maid had mixed all the papers on my desk. We had tombstone for dessert (milk and gelatin flavored with vanilla). We were kept in chapel twenty minutes later than usual to listen to a speech about womanly women. And then – just as I was settling down with a sigh of well-earned relief to The Portrait of a Lady, a girl named Ackerly, a dough-faced, deadly, unintermittently stupid girl, who sits next to me in Latin because her name begins with A, came to ask if Monday’s lesson commenced at paragraph 69 or 70, and stayed ONE HOUR. She has just gone.”Am I one of those Salinger conspiracy-theorist weirdos, or does it sound like Salinger liked Daddy-Long-Legs and paid it a strange little tribute in his best-known book?You should read Daddy-Long-Legs and decide for yourself. If you’ve already read it but it’s been a long time, you should read it again and see how much fun it is to read classics when you’re a chronological grownup and can decide for yourself what you feel like reading.

Adi (Reading in the Windowseat)

Beautiful, hilarious and endearing! A timeless classic that has the easy going page-turner plot of a modern relaxing read alongside the emotional and philosophical depth of the most renowned jewels of literature.A read for both young and old, that will induce you with new awareness for the beauty of life and those little, everyday happy moments, while laughing at all the oddities of people and their tempers.

Lina

Daddy Longs Legs, salah satu kisah klasik terkenal sepanjang masa, memang bukan salah satu novel yang masuk bacaan terbaik sepanjang masa. Tapi buku ini salah satu buku dengan karakter utama yang berjiwa feminis yang ditulis pada era dimana pria masih mendominasi tatanan kehidupan dan norma-norma sosial pada masa sebelum pecah perang dunia 1. Sebagian besar pasti sudah tau inti utama plot cerita ini, yaitu tentang seorang gadis yatim piatu bernama Jerusha(Judy) Abbott yang selama 17 tahun kehidupannya dihabiskan di panti asuhan dan tidak ada yang mau mengadopsinya. Hingga saat dimana usianya sudah tidak memungkinkan lagi untuk tinggal di panti asuhan, datanglah seorang wali yang baik hati yang bersedia membiayai Judy agar biasa kuliah ke perguruan tinggi dan sebagai gantinya, wali ini meminta Judy mengirimnya surat-surat mengenai dirinya saat masuk kuliah nanti. Maka dimulailah kisah Judy dan peristiwa-peristiwa menyenangkan yang dialaminya semasa kuliah, dalam bentuk tulisan-tulisan suratnya kepada walinya yang dipanggil Judy "Daddy Long Legs" termasuk perasaan mindernya terhadap teman-temannya akan masa lalunya yang dari panti asuhan. Hingga diakhir buku ketika identitas sesungguhnya "Daddy Long Legs" akan dibuka. Plot dalam novel Daddy Long Legs ini banyak dipakai formulanya di manga-manga Jepang, salah satunya Candy-Candy dan Topeng Kaca. Yang saya suka dari bacaan klasik adalah mereka punya banyak sekali Quote-quote bagus, seperti misalnya :"It isn't the big troubles in life that require character. Anybody can rise to a crisis and face a crushing tragedy with courage, but to meet the petty hazards of the day with a laugh - I really think that requires spirit.It's the kind of character that I am going to develop. I am going to pretend that all life is just a game which I must play as skillfully and fairly as I can. If I lose, I am going to shrug my shoulders and laugh - also if I win."atau"I'm going to enjoy every second, and I'm going to know I'm enjoying it while I'm enjoying it. Most people don't live; they just race. They are trying to reach some goal far away on the horizon, and in the heat of the going they get so breathless and panting that they lose sight of the beautiful, tranquil country they are passing through; and then the first thing they know, they are old and worn out, and it doesn't make any difference whether they've reached the goal or not."atau ini"I've discovered the true secret of happiness, Daddy, and that is to live in the now. Not to be for ever regretting the past, or anticipating the future; but to get the most that you can out of this very instant...I'm going to enjoy every second, and I'm going to know I'm enjoying it while I'm enjoying it. "Terkadang saya merasa pepatah-pepatah itu sangat mencerminkan keadaan kita pada umumnya, kita bekerja sangat keras demi mencari uang, demi mencapai impian-impian kita, kita juga kadang sering menyalahkan masa lalu kita atau terlalu mengkhawatirkan masa depan kita sampai kita lupa bahwa kita hanya hidup sekali saja didunia ini tanpa pernah menikmatinya.

Tadiana

I'm trying some freebies of a different sort. This one was written in 1912, so it's free on Gutenberg.org (and, presumably, elsewhere online). Basically it's "Anne Shirley goes to a girls' college." It's a delightful, quick read--less than 100 "pages" on my Kindle.Jerusha is a 17 year old who lives and works in an orphanage, where she's grown up. She is unexpectedly given the chance to go to college when one of the orphanage trustees reads a humorous piece that she wrote and offers to pay her way. He insists on remaining anonymous to her, but wants her to write him monthly letters telling him of her progress. This book consists of the letters Jerusha (who quickly dumps her unliked name at college and tells people to call her "Judy") writes over the next four years to her benefactor. It's fun to get a glimpse of life at an all-girls college 100 years ago. A sample from one of Judy's letters:Dear Daddy-Long-Legs,I hope you aren't the Trustee who sat on the toad? It went off--I was told--with quite a pop, so probably it was a fatter Trustee.. . . Every spring when the hoptoad season opened we would form a collection of toads and keep them in [window wells by the orphanage's laundry room]; and occasionally they would spill over into the laundry, causing a very pleasurable commotion on wash days. We were severely punished for our activities in this direction, but in spite of all discouragement the toads would collect.. . . I don't know why I am in such a reminiscent mood except that spring and the reappearance of toads always awakens the old acquisitive instinct. The only thing that keeps me from starting a collection is the fact that there's no rule against it."Judy is a likeable main character with a sense of humor and an independent streak. In many ways the book is dated, but at the same time there are some unexpected progressive views. Judy also makes some positive comments about socialism and a few snarky comments about religion that really make me wonder about the author's personal views! But in general this is a gentle, humorous coming-of-age story with just a bit of romance.I'd recommend Daddy-Long-Legs to those who enjoyed Anne of Green Gables and who like light historical fiction.

Margaret Oswald

Normally I love - or at least like - these types of books. Old-fashioned romance/coming of age tale... what's not to like? But Jean Webster's condescending attitude to women in romance and heavy-handed progressive views were really not my cup of tea. The story-telling is not strong, and I was literally angry at the end of this book at the opportunistic (and borderline predatory) masculine behavior that is presented as charming and romantic. Perhaps part of my dislike of this book is that I had rather high hopes... but overall, my impression was of pseudo-intellectual characters and a misogynistic plot.The book is interesting from a historical point of view, especially regarding the history of educational institutions in America. But if you're looking for a great story in this style, re-read Anne of Green Gables or Little Women.

Aerin

(Not so much a review as a comment) I'm not sure how I had never read this book before. It's absolutely darling - Nancy Drew, Trixie Belden, Louisa May Alcott and L.M. Montgomery all rolled into one.

Jasmin

WARNING! To follow is a highly illustrative review/plot summary of the book Daddy-Long-Legs.As a kid, I totally loved the cartoon Judy. I actually miss it sometimes, but then thanks to Goodreads, I discovered that it all started with a book.Jerusha Abbott is an orphan at the John Grier Homes. She always gets into trouble and has been overstaying for two years. She works her stay by taking care of the younger ones. She's actually scared that they might turn her out, but one day, Miss Lippet calls Jerusha to her office. On her way, she sees a man's shadow who appears to have extremely long legs.As she enters Miss Lippet's office, Miss Lippet tells her that she is to be sent to college by an anonymous man, whom she could call Mr. John Smith, which is of course is an alias.Jerusha is very thankful. She sends Mr. John Smith letters on almost about anything, ranging from her studies and silly exploits and how a foundling like her strives to keep the secret of her roots. The letters, some silly, some serious, some showing what she learns, but all are funny and touching.She calls him Daddy Long Legs since his shadow is all that she could tell of him. She does very well at school, ends up being called "Judy" and gains friends, Sally Mc Bride (the one with glasses) and Julia Pendleton (blonde). But despite the constant sending of Mr. John Smith of gifts, she can't help but be depressed writing to someone who never writes back. A girl couldn't help but cry.Ah hah! Then she meets Jervis Pendleton, a rich uncle of her classmate Julia Pendleton. Jervis understands her, and in some way, they have the same flow of thinking.But somehow along the way, she happens to fall in love with him, despite the 14 years age gap.And ah, the ending is so refreshing. I remember feeling the same amount of lightheartedness, because the ending is so touching.And now that it's over, I look wistfully like this:Well not as cute as that, but teary eyed since my longing for the cartoon is somehow eased, but still there.Daddy-Long-Legs is a sweet tale, not just of romance, but also how an orphan girl strives and blends in the normal world. Judy is a heroine that is very admirable and whom everyone must set an example of. She is strong and hardworking. And her roots never interfered with her dreams, and she somehow made it an inspiration to aim higher. And also, she is not perfect, and as she constantly points out, she is just a girl of whom all of us could relate to.But somehow, I couldn't get enough of this, so, off to get a copy of the sequel Dear Enemy.But who is Daddy-Long-Legs? Read to find out :D

Wendy

** spoiler alert ** I've been reading comments here and there about how this book is not that good and the central relationship is creepy and it is anti-feminist. THIS IS SO NOT TRUE.(Well, of course if you think it's not that good, that's your prerogative; I won't go that far; but I don't understand, either.)This book is amazing. Judy is so completely accessible, and her roommates and college friends are so funny. It's a joy to read about someone who is just so excited to do EVERYTHING, but not, of course, in a phony way. But she isn't happy all the time, and she isn't fake; she has days of deep depression, as you might expect from someone with her upbringing. I loved it every time I read it when I was a kid, but then when I went to college and reread it, I appreciated it even more; because lots of what Judy experienced, I identified with, though on a different level--my educational background was also different from most of my classmates, I also felt like I had to watch what I said about pre-college life because I quickly found that people didn't get it, and I also wasn't used to having my own money to spend (my own fault, because I never worked in high school).The relationship between Jervis and Judy (this is why it's under a spoiler; I've been annoyed by people spoiling this to people who haven't read it, too) could seem creepy if one only looked at it on a shallow level, and with 21st century eyes. For one thing, he wasn't THAT old. It doesn't seem like an age difference that would have been creepy at the time, and I actually have met a few couples with similar age differences today. For another, she got to know him on normal terms; it wasn't like he was grooming her or anything--it wasn't GIGI. Or PRETTY WOMAN. Or whatever.Finally, it is so not anti-feminist. I guess it bothers some people that she gets married right out of college and never "does" anything with her education, and that Jervis tells her what to do. Yes, it was totally wrong for Jervis to tell her where she was allowed to go on her summer vacations, and Judy KNOWS IT. She calls him on it, thoroughly. He learns his lesson. And one can only assume that after they're married, they continue with all the philanthropy (that refurbishing of the John Grier Home in the second book wasn't cheap).Also--many of you know that this is pretty much my highest praise for a book--it's FUNNY.(Now, DEAR ENEMY is absolutely racist and classist and generally offensive, besides not being as well written and only sometimes as funny. The odd thing is, I've had difficulty convincing people of it.)(Oh, and also: PLEASE, can someone explain to me why so many people from Iran have read Jean Webster's books?)

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