Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Daddy-Long-Legs

Title: Daddy-Long-Legs
Author: Jean Webster

Jerusha, an orphaned girl whose first name was picked from a grave and surname from a phone book by the orphanage matron she grew up with, gets an unexpected and intersting benefactor who offers to pay her through college and give her a generous pocket money, on one condition. The benefactor wants her to write him letters, one every month, to which he will never reply. Jerusha, who liked to be addressed as Judy, is not informed of his true identity, and instead she is instructed to address him as Mr. John Smith. But as Judy catches a silhouette of her benefactor, she just notices he is a very tall man, and names him Daddy-long-legs fondly. 

Judy writes her letters faithfully, describing and illustrating her letters in a wonderfully child-like zeal, and talking about her life in college- educational, social, and personal growths in great respect and detail. She grows fond of writing her letters, and the revelation of the identity of her benefactor is the sweet surprise for all of us that the book has in the end. 

I loved this book. It is one of the most pleasant and absolutely lovable books that I have read. We grow with Judy's experiences and our expectations rise as we read her articulate letters with illustrations. I really like epistolary narratives as they feel intimate and genuine, as they are written in a tone of confidence and faith. And, Daddy-Long-Legs is a simple, intimate tale through Judy's letters to her benefactor.

Jean Webster herself has made the illustrations for this book, and it is a lovely addition to the letters. They add a whole new dimension and play a significant role in how we perceive Judy as readers. This is a timeless, evergreen classic, and a very heartwarming one.

I loved it, and so will you!

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