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Oct 19 2014

“Dear Enemy” by Jean Webster

Warning: this post contains spoilers to “Dear Enemy”, the sequel to “Daddy-Long-Legs” by the same author.

I finally finished reading the book. Initially, I didn’t like it as much as I like its prequel, but after reading about one-third, I must say I started enjoying the voice of Sallie McBride, the best friend of Judy Abbott from “Daddy-Long-Legs”. The entire book is comprised of letters, and we understand the story by reading various letters of Sallie McBride to different people, not just Judy.

Below are some highlights:

From the anime version of "Daddy Long Legs"

From the anime version of “Daddy Long Legs”

Judy and Jervis had a daughter, and guess what? They named her Judy, Junior! Since their love story had many parallels with Candy and Albert in Candy Candy, I can’t help but wonder if Mizuki is to give us the name of Candy’s husband one day, would they also have a daughter? If so, would Candy name their daughter “Candy, Junior” as well? 🙂

Judy was happily married to Jervis. They were so in love, and Judy couldn’t imagine leaving his side for more than two days! Therefore, she traveled with him to many business trips, even bringing their daughter to Jamaica and other countries near the Caribbean.

“Dear Enemy” is also a story of how Sallie grew up as a woman while being the superintendent of John Grier Home, the orphanage where Judy had grown up. Judy and Jervis hired Sallie to be in charge of improving and upgrading the orphanage, but the story also includes her romance with two men. It was an interesting read to see how she slowly came to realize that she didn’t really love the man she was engaged to marry. These are her words in her letter to Judy,

“The girl he loves is not the me I want to be… we no longer have any interests in common; we are not friends… He doesn’t comprehend it; he thinks… that all I have to do is to take an interest in his life… I talk about the things he wants to talk about… I pretend when I am with him. I am not myself, and if I were to live together… I’d have to keep on pretending all my life. He wants me to watch his face and smile when he smiles and frown when he frowns. He can’t realize that I’m an individual just as much as he is…”

When reading, I was very touched by Sallie’s words, and later, when she somehow discovered that she was actually in love with another man, she wrote to him in a love letter,

“I wonder, when we are old and bent and tottery, can you and I look back, with no regrets… it’s nice to look forward to, isn’t it–a life of work and play and little daily adventures side by side with somebody you love? I’m not afraid of the future any more. I don’t mind growing old with you…”

He was a Scottish, a reliable comrade who was always there for her whenever she had problems arising from managing the orphanage. He deeply cared about the orphans just like Sallie herself, and guess what? To Sallie, he was her best friend. 😀 Also, because Sallie had a boyfriend (later engaged), this guy had been suppressing his true feelings for Sallie. Sounds familiar? 😉

10 comments

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  1. Reeka

    Oh Thanks, Ms Puddle. I’m so gonna buy the sequel.

    Ck ck ck, Mizuki, … can you be more obvious? With this, how could someone not be sure that Anohito was Albert?

    1. Ms Puddle

      Mind you Reeka, the main character was Sallie McBride in the sequel, and having read DLL yourself you probably know that her character is closer to Judy’s (or Candy’s) than to Annie or Patty in Candy Candy. 🙂

    2. Lydia

      I do agree.

      1. Ms Puddle

        Thank you, Lydia. 🙂

  2. Quevivacandy

    Definitily, so many coincidences in both stories. I always thought Sally could be Patty in CC but now I’m not quiet sure… but only because the man she is in love with… suppress his true feelings? I only saw that in Archie – for Candy… grrr I don’t want to think more I guess, lol…

    At the end, what matters is that J&J are married, with a daughter, she doesn’t want to leave him as C doesn’t want to leave her husband, Judy married her guardian, so, what it that novell telling us? Candy married hers too… 😀

    1. Ms Puddle

      It’s true, QuevivaCandy! So many parallels indeed! 😉 I read this book mainly because I had read somewhere that Jervis had paid for the reconstruction, and people said it showed his deep love for Judy. Sigh.

      I meant Albert who had been suppressing his true feelings. He acted like a protective big brother to Candy but he had actually fallen in love. Yet, he put that aside and tried leading her back to Terry.

      You’re right!! Judy married her benefactor (because Jervis wasn’t her guardian in the book). This sequel focused on the orphanage and Sallie was the main character. But through her letters we know what happened to Judy and Jervis as a happily married couple.

      You’re right about it was obvious whom Candy married… I was told some Terry fans hated “Daddy-Long-Legs” 😉

    2. Reeka

      Yes, QuevivaCandy, you’re right. Too many similar story lines between DLL and CC. They both even shared the same sentiment about not wanting to leave their spouse. In CC, it was Anohito who didn’t want Candy leaving his side. I don’t know, but this and the narration that Anohito was coming home after dark and Candy said to herself how she didn’t hear him coming home, … for me it’s another clues that Anohito was Albert. I mean, I couldn’t imagine that happened for Terry, a famous and busy actor. It’s hard for him to tag along his family to anywhere his troops going. And I guess you couldn’t predict when an actor came home everyday, right?

      🙂

      1. Ms Puddle

        I might re-read the sequel because some parts I had missed when reading it the first time… I suspected the Scottish character had feelings but he had deliberately hidden that and acted cool and mean sometimes. Anyway, in “Dear Enemy” it seems that Jervis didn’t want Judy to leave him either (it went both ways). Because Sallie complained many times why Judy couldn’t leave his side longer… LOL.
        Honestly… the more we understand CCFS the less likely Terry could be Anohito… 😉

  3. EnakaT

    That’s the Judy-Jervis wedding I was talking about back in the recent posts. In Anime version. I knew it. Anyway, it does sound interesting, and I can’t wait to read DLL novel, and watch anime later. Thanks for the update.

    Have a good week.

    1. Ms Puddle

      Yes the picture looks nice, and thanks for your interest! Have a wonderful week, EnakaT! 😀

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