While this is far less enjoyable than the first book (which was utterly brilliant, and quite hard, if not impossible to surpass), I thought it was quite okay until Anne and her friends tried to kill a cat.
Somewhat ironically, the cat does not die and instead becomes Anne's very own pet (as she's the only one it trusts and loves), but I am so very disappointed both in the book and the author :(
Why couldn't Anne have just loved the poor battered animal before she betrayed its confidence so thoroughly? I get that the author wants to imply that Anne realized she cared for the cat when she almost lost it, but this could have been done a lot better by having the cat meet with some accident, with Anne rescuing it and caring for it.
Instead, she and Philippa tried to put it to sleep with chloroform, and then, when they heard it meowing after a while (so it was still alive), they left it there some more, just waiting for it to die already. How could I admire or even appreciate someone who does something like that?