Online marketplace Amazon is selling a copy of the L.M. Montgomery's 1908 coming-of-age novel through its CreateSpace self-publishing operation with a busty, blonde on the cover, even though Anne is traditionally described as a skinny redhead.
The Toronto Star said dozens of readers expressed their disdain regarding the change in image on Amazon.com; however, it also noted the website has the legal right to update the cover since the book has been in the public domain since 1993 and is publishable by anyone without permission of the original copyright holder.
"This is pushing things too far for the sake of making a few more bucks out of Anne," Toronto Montgomery scholar Irene Gammel told the Star.
"It's legitimate to update the packaging of a text to make it accessible to new readerships, but it's another matter to miss the point of a novel," Gammel said.
"Montgomery's iconic Anne is a high-spirited redhead with freckles and a pointed chin, whereas this new Anne is a languid blond with dark roots, a round face and a come-hither look. Montgomery's Anne is skinny, whereas this cover shows a big bosomy vixen in a cowboy outfit. ... It seems weird to package Anne like a soft-porn star. ... This marketing ploy may well backfire."
The Star said Amazon did not respond to its request for comment.