Many Anne of Green Gables fans on the Island are taking issue with a book cover that portrays P.E.I.'s most famous redhead as a blonde.  

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Create Space can get away with their version of the cover since L.M. Montgomery died more than 50 years ago and her books are now in the public domain. (createspace.com)

Instead of the traditional pigtailed Anne, a voluptuous blonde lights up the cover of a new box set of Anne novels published by someone on Create Space, an online self-publishing book service connected to Amazon.com.  

The company can get away with their version of the cover since Lucy Maud Montgomery died more than 50 years ago and her books are now in the public domain.  

Her image, on the other hand, is controlled by the Anne of Green Gables licensing Authority. That authority includes the P.E.I. provincial government and Montgomery's heirs.  

That means if an unlicensed company attempted to make a t-shirt of a blonde Anne or a busty blonde Anne doll, it could be sued for copyright infringement.  

George Campbell, owner of the Green Gables store, said he thinks he's a pretty good authority on what Anne should look like.  

"I thought somebody's making a big error here because Anne is not blonde. And then when we Googled it and saw the picture of her, we were just horrified by it. We couldn't believe, we thought it was a joke at first," said Campbell.  

Beth Cavert, a member of the L.M. Montgomery Literary Society, suspect the original author would be none too happy with her main character's makeover.

"She was very critical when her own book covers, when they were in their first editions, when they weren't exactly right. So I think she would not even be able to comprehend this cover," she said.

"I think she would probably, if she had an iPhone, she would probably pitch it out the door if she saw this image on it."

Not surprisingly, at the Anne store, Campbell said he'll be sticking to the more traditional publications.

"This new Anne is not going to last," he said.