Reading Log: Daddy Long Legs (Jean Webster)

A brisk epistolary novel and a Bildungsroman of sorts featuring a sharp and still (over 100 years later) very funny protagonist, Daddy Long Legs is an enjoyable read. Jerusha, the young woman who is sent to college by a mysterious benefactor she dubs “Daddy Long Legs” based on her one fleeting glimpse of him, is an appealing character (perhaps too appealing; my fondness for her makes me suspicious about myself) whose letters are delightful.

The end will not pack the same surprise for contemporary readers I suspect it did in the early 1900s and I think the denouement is open to reasonable criticism from an artistic perspective and slightly less reasonable criticism from a feminist perspective.

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