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Little Women

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Includes character guide, which-March-girl-are-you quiz, author info, and glossary Rich or poor, we will keep together and be happy in one another. Christmas won't be the same this year for Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, as their father is away fighting in the Civil War and the family has fallen on hard times. But though they may be poor, life for the four March sisters is rich wit Includes character guide, which-March-girl-are-you quiz, author info, and glossary Rich or poor, we will keep together and be happy in one another. Christmas won't be the same this year for Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, as their father is away fighting in the Civil War and the family has fallen on hard times. But though they may be poor, life for the four March sisters is rich with color, as they play games, put on wild theatricals, make new friends, argue, grapple with their vices, learn from their mistakes, nurse each other through sickness and disappointments, and get into all sorts of trouble.


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Includes character guide, which-March-girl-are-you quiz, author info, and glossary Rich or poor, we will keep together and be happy in one another. Christmas won't be the same this year for Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, as their father is away fighting in the Civil War and the family has fallen on hard times. But though they may be poor, life for the four March sisters is rich wit Includes character guide, which-March-girl-are-you quiz, author info, and glossary Rich or poor, we will keep together and be happy in one another. Christmas won't be the same this year for Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, as their father is away fighting in the Civil War and the family has fallen on hard times. But though they may be poor, life for the four March sisters is rich with color, as they play games, put on wild theatricals, make new friends, argue, grapple with their vices, learn from their mistakes, nurse each other through sickness and disappointments, and get into all sorts of trouble.

30 review for Little Women

  1. 4 out of 5

    Barry Pierce

    Okay I’m just gonna say this. I liked Little Women. I’m an 18-year-old guy and I liked Little Women. What. It’s quaint. It’s quaint as fuck. I’m such a Jo.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Teodora

    3.45/5 ⭐ Full review on my Blog: The Dacian She-Wolf 🐺 So, feeling classical and pinky, I’ve decided to read Little Women . Finally. I felt kind of intellectual when I carried it around with me in trains and subways, not gonna lie. But leaving that aside, I quite enjoyed it. I could actually label it as a cute and educative reading. But that's it. There’s no much to say about it though. Everyone knows what’s it about. And if you don’t, you can find out what happens from Friends . Rachel and Joe 3.45/5 ⭐ Full review on my Blog: The Dacian She-Wolf 🐺 So, feeling classical and pinky, I’ve decided to read Little Women . Finally. I felt kind of intellectual when I carried it around with me in trains and subways, not gonna lie. But leaving that aside, I quite enjoyed it. I could actually label it as a cute and educative reading. But that's it. There’s no much to say about it though. Everyone knows what’s it about. And if you don’t, you can find out what happens from Friends . Rachel and Joey ruined this for me anyway, they could do that for you too. I was under the impression that nothing really happened. Even though there were a lot of little stories about our girls’ little “adventures”. Those adventures were more like cute day to day things than anything else and they did bring a smile to my lips from time to time. The important thing about them though was that they taught you something of value, even though it was about pride, hope, health or social matters. You can count on those stories to help you be a tad better. At least I can honestly say that some of the advises in there gave me something to think about. There is a sincere approach to matters. There is a society full of rules and labels. Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy must learn for themselves how to grow in order to make a good living in this society that is a bit cruel and unjust to women. The girls have such different personalities and this is what makes them challenging. My personal favourite is Jo with whom I seem to resemble sometimes. She’s a wild spirit, free and in need of making herself heard. And also, her boyish air and the love for reading good books add to that aspect. Beth is my second favourite because she’s sweet and innocent and knows how to love with depth. “There were many Beths in the world, shy and quiet, sitting in corners till needed, and living for others so cheerfully, that no one sees the sacrifices till the little cricket on the hearth stops chirping, and the sweet, sunshiny presence vanishes, leaving silence and shadow behind.” Meg is the eldest so she has to take care of her sisters, to be their role model, but she loves luxury and wealth and is caught between two lives: the one she has and the one she wants to have. Amy is a brat most of the time but sometimes she has her cute moments, I must say. I’m totally in love with Jo and Laurie’s friendship though. There is something so warm and natural about it that it just fills my heart with joy and cuteness. “She could not speak, but she did “hold on”, and the warm grasp of the friendly human hand comforted her sore heart.” Their love for each other, platonic love in its essence, is one of the best things this book has to offer. They’re both in for wide smiles and mischievous plans. And I love it. The empowering little speeches are a nice touch to the story and this is one bit of educative matter every single person who reads this book must extract and place somewhere near their heart. It is what makes this story one to never die. “Better be happy old maids than unhappy wives, or unmaidenly girls, running about to find husbands (...). Poverty seldom daunts a sincere lover.” With that being said, what do you think about this piece of classic literature? Is it worth reading? Does it impress in any way? (Book-styled)

  3. 5 out of 5

    Lucy Langford

    I loved the unique personalities, individualism and traits of each girl and how the sisters handle and react to the ups and downs in their lives. The portrayal of sisterhood was accurate (I then learned that this book was semi-autobiographical so that maybe why the author wrote about this topic so well). Absolutely loved Jo and her ambitious nature! I loved her creativeness and dreams of becoming a writer (despite its male dominance in this time period) and her aversion of what a “lady” should be I loved the unique personalities, individualism and traits of each girl and how the sisters handle and react to the ups and downs in their lives. The portrayal of sisterhood was accurate (I then learned that this book was semi-autobiographical so that maybe why the author wrote about this topic so well). Absolutely loved Jo and her ambitious nature! I loved her creativeness and dreams of becoming a writer (despite its male dominance in this time period) and her aversion of what a “lady” should be/act like. I cannot wait for the new movie to come out and hope it includes most of the book material ☺️

  4. 5 out of 5

    April (Aprilius Maximus)

    1.) Little Women ★★★★ 2.) Good Wives ★★★★ ----------------------------------------------- “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.” representation: LOL this is a classic, fam. No good rep here! [trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers] ✧・゚: *✧・゚:* 4 s t a r s *:・゚✧*:・゚✧ Please note that Little Women is often split into 2 parts, and this review is just for part one. I thought this was so wholesome! I absolutely cannot wait to conti 1.) Little Women ★★★★ 2.) Good Wives ★★★★ ----------------------------------------------- “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.” representation: LOL this is a classic, fam. No good rep here! [trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers] ✧・゚: *✧・゚:* 4 s t a r s *:・゚✧*:・゚✧ Please note that Little Women is often split into 2 parts, and this review is just for part one. I thought this was so wholesome! I absolutely cannot wait to continue on and read the next part and then watch the movie coming out this month! Of course there were some minor things that I disagreed with that impacted my enjoyment of the novel, but a lot of that is due to the fact that this book is a classic, so of course it's going to have some shitty things included. The main things that bothered me were how it was encouraged for Jo to keep her anger in check and always appear to be a nice, calm lady and how the book could at times be a little preachy (but this one wasn't too bad!) Also, Jo is DEFINITELY a part of the lgbtqiap+ community, but we ain't going to see that are we haha. trigger warnings: (i forgot to keep track so sorry if i missed any!) slurs like *mp and m*dget, loved ones being enlisted in war, family members being extremely ill, death of an infant, death of a pet (bird).

  5. 5 out of 5

    Melindam

    Original rating: 5 stars Update: 4 stars - still a comfy-cosy/feel-good read, but I am aging or getting more mature or whatever you want to call it, so kissing goodbye to fresh bloom/youth/innocence/naivety and 1 star! Ah, the idea of transcendentalism and the happy notion of inherent goodness of people and nature. How it appealed to me (it still does, but felt a bit spoon-fed this time round!).... *SIGH* *FEELING SAD, BUT BRAVELY FACING THE INEVITABLE* It used to be a favourite book of mine, though Original rating: 5 stars Update: 4 stars - still a comfy-cosy/feel-good read, but I am aging or getting more mature or whatever you want to call it, so kissing goodbye to fresh bloom/youth/innocence/naivety and 1 star! Ah, the idea of transcendentalism and the happy notion of inherent goodness of people and nature. How it appealed to me (it still does, but felt a bit spoon-fed this time round!).... *SIGH* *FEELING SAD, BUT BRAVELY FACING THE INEVITABLE* It used to be a favourite book of mine, though I haven't read it in quite a while (more than 10 years, I think). I don't deny seeing and loving the 1994 Winona Ryder movie first that inspired me to read the book, which I loved even more. Ah And to think that author Louisa May Alcott knew Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau. WOW! This brings some other, happier thoughts to mind, which have something to do with Little Women, but even more with literature from America in general. I just cannot deny myself the pleasure of reminiscing about my favourite uni-lecturer, the divine Bill Murphy. I will never forget the day I set eyes on him when entering the lecture hall. He looked like a veritable tramp with unkempt clothes and hair who somehow lost his way. But he had such kind eyes and smile. And once he opened his mouth to talk on 19th literature in the US, he captured his until-then snickering and rather patronising audience. Oh, all those discussions we used to have... I was really lucky to be able to talk about transcendentalism & Louisa May Alcott, among many other issues. *Another SIGH* Thank you, Bill!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Romie

    the amount of love I have for this story surprises me. I didn't grow up with it, didn't get to see any adaptations, and yet, the moment I started reading, I knew it was something special. I fell in love with the characters, all of them. they all taught me something, and seeing them grow throughout the book was such a pleasure! I cannot wait to read good wives and see what happens to them all three years later! (4.5) the amount of love I have for this story surprises me. I didn't grow up with it, didn't get to see any adaptations, and yet, the moment I started reading, I knew it was something special. I fell in love with the characters, all of them. they all taught me something, and seeing them grow throughout the book was such a pleasure! I cannot wait to read good wives and see what happens to them all three years later! (4.5)

  7. 4 out of 5

    Stacey (prettybooks)

    This mini review is part of a blogpost talking about three children's classics. Little Women was one of the classics that had been on my wishlist the longest. I think I first came across it while watching that episode of Friends. I didn't know much about Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March, but it seemed like the perfect children's classic for me. Yet Little Women wasn't as engaging as I had hoped. I wasn't emotionally drawn into the sisters' lives, which is important for a character-driven novel. It's a This mini review is part of a blogpost talking about three children's classics. Little Women was one of the classics that had been on my wishlist the longest. I think I first came across it while watching that episode of Friends. I didn't know much about Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March, but it seemed like the perfect children's classic for me. Yet Little Women wasn't as engaging as I had hoped. I wasn't emotionally drawn into the sisters' lives, which is important for a character-driven novel. It's a great shame as I had high hopes. But I am struggling to decipher what exactly my issue was. I think I just wanted more to happen and more of an emotional punch – whether due to a sad story or a joyful one. It felt to me like the chapters could have been short stories rather than a linear storyline with a beginning, middle and end, even though it follows the lives of the sisters from childhood. I enjoyed some chapters quite a bit, whereas others not so much. And I was also surprised to discover that what I expected to happen in Little Women actually happens in the next book, Good Wives . I've not given up on Little Women, however. It's one I'll be coming back to, now that I know what to expect!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    I’d rather have my ear talked off by Austen’s Mrs Bennet than read another of the overly righteous March characters’ speeches! I only pushed through (this being my third attempt to read Alcott’s novel) so that I can get the most out of the new movie adaptation, which I’ll be seeing at the cinema this weekend. From what I’ve gathered, Greta Gerwig put her unique twist on the story, interpreting the novel in a refreshing way, to fit a present-day context and challenge contemporary viewers. Finger I’d rather have my ear talked off by Austen’s Mrs Bennet than read another of the overly righteous March characters’ speeches! I only pushed through (this being my third attempt to read Alcott’s novel) so that I can get the most out of the new movie adaptation, which I’ll be seeing at the cinema this weekend. From what I’ve gathered, Greta Gerwig put her unique twist on the story, interpreting the novel in a refreshing way, to fit a present-day context and challenge contemporary viewers. Fingers crossed I’m gonna love it! But this? It’s so incredibly dull and preachy… I guess I’m in the minority corner. I rather preferred Laurie and Amy, since Alcott was trying so desperately to make you like Jo’s tomboyishness. I know the book paints a portrait of what being a woman constituted at that time, nevertheless, it hasn’t aged well! Even the title and the overuse of the word little throughout seems somehow belittling... I just can’t!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Smartarse

    While most people may associate the four March sisters with the Celestial City or the Pilgrim's Progress, my initial thoughts tend to veer towards Amy's bawling face in the 1987 anime version's German opening sequence, pictured here for your convenience. Unlike some kids who'd hurry home from school to catch it on TV, I was more interested in the anime that would start 1 hour AFTER this one... and I wanted to give myself enough buffer time. So the end result was probably the same: in that I ende While most people may associate the four March sisters with the Celestial City or the Pilgrim's Progress, my initial thoughts tend to veer towards Amy's bawling face in the 1987 anime version's German opening sequence, pictured here for your convenience. Unlike some kids who'd hurry home from school to catch it on TV, I was more interested in the anime that would start 1 hour AFTER this one... and I wanted to give myself enough buffer time. So the end result was probably the same: in that I ended up watching each episode at least 3 times over the course of my middle school years. With the above in mind, I have to say that the narrative thread of the story definitely reminded me of several episodes, such as: - Mr. Lawrence's affection for Beth and her piano playing - the ball where Jo is trying to hide a burned spot on her dress behind her glove, while Meg has the time of her life - the girls spending all their pocket money on Christmas presents for their mother I do have to give the book credit, for giving the characters a slightly different "aura"... although that also ended up alienating about 80% of the cast. For example, in my recollection: - Meg has always been the wise older sister, stoically bearing the burden of responsibility. - Amy, a heavily spoiled, but ultimately just an adorable scamp getting into trouble. - and Laurie, though not exactly wise, but a rather more temperate presence in the girls' lives. Finding out that: - Meg was in fact exceedingly vain - Amy was quite shallow and obsessed with wealth - while Laurie's thoughtlessness in pranks could easily veer into dangerous territory ... was somewhat of a let down. Logically I realize that I may be looking at my childhood memories through rose-colored glasses, and that characters with both virtues and short comings, are definitely more real... I can't help the odd twinge of disappointment. Add to that the overly moralistic conclusion of each chapter, which just sealed the deal. Score: 2.4 /5 stars I wanted to like this story so much, and to a certain degree I did. Jo is just perfect in all her quick tempered and rash behavior. Beth, may have initially been channeling a certified saint, but in the end she also takes her fair share of flaws, which did ultimately endear her to me. This would have been a perfect book for my 11-12-year old self. I would've enjoyed all the references to the Celestial City and the Pilgrim's Progress. It may actually have even given me a sense of purpose... for a few days, at any rate. As it is, I first became aware of the novel's existence during my college years, by which time I figured I was too old (i.e. cynical) for such stories. As for now, I'm way too jaded and critical to enjoy it properly.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Noha Badawi

    This is officially my favorite classic of all times. I see myself in the future picking it up again and again and never getting bored. I saw the movie first (the 2019 version) and I was so giddy in the theatre , laughing, smiling, crying and feeling all warm and cozy. And as much as I feel in love with the movie; the book brought me more joy! Don’t get me wrong, the adaptation is uncanny and perfect. But what I loved is that book still made my imagination run wild, with more depth and details to the This is officially my favorite classic of all times. I see myself in the future picking it up again and again and never getting bored. I saw the movie first (the 2019 version) and I was so giddy in the theatre , laughing, smiling, crying and feeling all warm and cozy. And as much as I feel in love with the movie; the book brought me more joy! Don’t get me wrong, the adaptation is uncanny and perfect. But what I loved is that book still made my imagination run wild, with more depth and details to the drama that is the March family. I found myself relating to every single character on a certain level but most of all I found myself in Jo March’s passion and fire. I wanted more on the romance side but I do appreciate still how undeveloped it was. This is a book about strong women. A mother, unrelentingly raising and caring for her daughters while her husband is away. A young sister who’s so compassionate and calm and wants only to be with her family and play music. A elder sister who’s very content with her mundane dreams to fall in love and start a family. A sister who’s fire walking on earth, with passion that could fill up the entire world and a determination to prove herself. And lastly, the sister who loved silently and dreamed of being the best female artist the world has ever seen. I loved every single detail to pieces and I know that I’m going to pick this up again and watch the movie a million times over.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Layla

    4.75 stars which means you can basically consider it a 5 star rating except I have one minor thing I need to talk about I want to start by saying that I really liked this book ,and compared to a lot of the classics I read, this one was one of the most enjoyable for these reasons: · The Characters: I loved them. Personally when I connect with characters than the book just gets so much better for me because I'm actually invested. Jo was my favorite out of the sisters as I related to her the most b 4.75 stars which means you can basically consider it a 5 star rating except I have one minor thing I need to talk about I want to start by saying that I really liked this book ,and compared to a lot of the classics I read, this one was one of the most enjoyable for these reasons: · The Characters: I loved them. Personally when I connect with characters than the book just gets so much better for me because I'm actually invested. Jo was my favorite out of the sisters as I related to her the most but I was fond of the others too. Beth is such a sweetie , Meg is caring, and Amy is artistic and I love them all. I feel like a mother even when all off them are fictional and they are all around my age. Laurie is so nice too, and I am sad he doesn't exist in real life. Where is my Laurie?😭His relationship with Jo is amazing and funny and has such a great potential for being friends to lovers(I know it's not gonna happen but I still ship it). · The Writing: This writing style is top tier. Not only does it have the charm of classics were its all proper, pretty, and elegant, but it also is easy to understand. It doesn't have a bunch of characters, the language it not difficult, and I always find myself immersed into it. I don't have to worry about understanding it and whether or not I have fully comprehended it fully and just enjoy the story itself. · It's not problematic: I have only started reading classics/older books this year and there is a reaccuring themes in some of these books where there are problematic aspects which makes me not like it as much as I feel I should. I know it's a different time period, but being racist, misogynistic or any other type of hatred or bigotry is still not excusable. Neither is adding an unhealthy relationship and passing it off as romantic.In this book I didn't find any of the sort. I am able to bask in it's charm, because there is nothing that rubs me the wrong way. · The Relationships: The friendship and sibling bond was *chefs kiss*. I don't see sibling relationships portrayed much in books, or at least accurately. Siblings have highs and lows and this book shows that. And the 4 girls all have such a sweet friendship and support system within their household and with their mother. Their friendship with the Laurences is also so great. Laurie is kind of like their brother, and Mr. Laurence is sort of their guardian and his fatherly relationship with Beth is so cute, and because these girls are living alone without their actual father who is away for the war and need good people to surround them. Now to be a downer and the quicky tell you the minor thing I didn't like: I didn't like reading all the aspects or parts of their life throughout the year we read. There is so much that happend and some stories and chapters and loved, and very few I found myself skimming. I'm pretty sure that is a me thing though because books that have this sort of format were there isn't a clear cut plot, I experience this feeling. Some books I've felt this with are Jane Austen books and Anne of Green Gables. ( Not that I didn't enjoy these books because I did😅) Final Thoughts: Please read this book if you haven't. It has life lessons , lighthearted fun, and it's especially a great start for if you want to jump into classics. side note: Little Women is a two part book that is usaully put into one book, but occasionally divide into two. Little Women and Good Wives. My copy of this book series does that so my assessment of this book is only on Part 1. I will be reading Part 2 soon as soon as I can. Also I finally finished my 2020 Goodreads goal of 70 books so yay! 🎉🎉

  12. 5 out of 5

    Cristina Argetoianu

    Rating: 4 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ This was very enjoyable, loved all the little women, they are so precious, even though each of them has their own flaws. I feel like this is such a Christmasy read.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Karschtl

    I once did a short presentation on this book, the following text was part of it. Louisa May Alcott was born in Germantown, which is now a part of Philadelphia, in 1832. But soon she moved with her family to the Boston-area, where she and her three sisters Anna, Elizabeth and May grew up. The four girls were educated by their father Bronson Alcott, who was a member of the New England Transcendentalists. Through him Louisa met other Transcendentalists like Theodore Parker, Henry David Thoreau and R I once did a short presentation on this book, the following text was part of it. Louisa May Alcott was born in Germantown, which is now a part of Philadelphia, in 1832. But soon she moved with her family to the Boston-area, where she and her three sisters Anna, Elizabeth and May grew up. The four girls were educated by their father Bronson Alcott, who was a member of the New England Transcendentalists. Through him Louisa met other Transcendentalists like Theodore Parker, Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Influenced by these great writers it is not surprising that Lousias greatest passion was writing. She had a rich imagination and often made up stories that she and her sisters act out for their parents or friends. She started her career as a serious author partly because she needed to earn some money to support the family who was not always wealthy. In the beginning, Louisa wrote poetry and short stories, later on the novels. At the age of 35 her publisher asked her to write a novel for children. That’s how she wrote „Little Women“ where she describes the four March sisters coming of age in New England at the time of the Civil War. The father serves as a preacher in the war, the girls are left alone with their loving mother. The five women live in poverty but try to make the best of it. The story is very autobiographical. Lousia resembles Jo, who is a tomboy only interested in literature. The eldest sister Anna was the model for Meg, who is pretty and rather vain about that. Elizabeth is portrayed as the gentle Beth, she is the quiet and shy one who enjoys playing the piano. The equivalent of the youngest sister May is Amy, the little girl that often wants to be the center of the attraction. You can see the similarities even in the names: Elizabeth and Beth; May and Amy. „Little Women“ was followed by several other novels about the March family, such as: Good Wives, Little Men and Jo’s Boys. Especially children books always have a moral (or even more than one). Here for example in the second chapter, where the sisters give their Christmas breakfast to a hungry family and content themselves with bread and milk. They were really looking forward to this breakfast, because they are not rich and don't get all those good things regularly. But they saw that this other family was suffering a lot more. They are rewarded for this altruistic act on the same evening with a delicious dinner, donated by their neighbour who has heard of their generous gift. Only who gives something, gets something in return.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Constantine

    Rating: Very Good Genre: Classic I'm usually not a big fan when the main characters in the story are children or teenagers but this classic is very well written by Louisa May Alcott. It's a beautiful story of the poor March family with four little girls, Meg, Jo, Amy, and Beth. The author has given these girls or little women as their father calls them some very unique and distinctive characteristics. Each of them felt very real to me with their flaws and vulnerabilities. One thing I want to stres Rating: Very Good Genre: Classic I'm usually not a big fan when the main characters in the story are children or teenagers but this classic is very well written by Louisa May Alcott. It's a beautiful story of the poor March family with four little girls, Meg, Jo, Amy, and Beth. The author has given these girls or little women as their father calls them some very unique and distinctive characteristics. Each of them felt very real to me with their flaws and vulnerabilities. One thing I want to stress on is the moral lessons that this story gives. There is a lot of kindness in this tale, lots of goodness. It's beautiful to see in literature when the parents build this kind of lessons in their children, nurture them to grow on being kind and respectful towards the others. There is this sense of friendship between the girls and between the girls and their mother. I was a bit hesitant getting into this classic but I am glad that I did. I liked it a lot.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ghizlan

    The rating is actually 3.5. I seriously considered giving more but some parts of this classic book were just too boring i must say! But everything else was sooo good: the sisterhood, the ambiance of the 19th century and the joyful moments that they shared. Everybody talked about which one is their favorite sister, but for me my favorite of all the family members is the mother Mrs.March,such a loving and caring women that made me think of my own. So excited to go watch the new adaptation of the mo The rating is actually 3.5. I seriously considered giving more but some parts of this classic book were just too boring i must say! But everything else was sooo good: the sisterhood, the ambiance of the 19th century and the joyful moments that they shared. Everybody talked about which one is their favorite sister, but for me my favorite of all the family members is the mother Mrs.March,such a loving and caring women that made me think of my own. So excited to go watch the new adaptation of the movie that i will surely love!!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Janani(ஜனனி)⁷

    the only person who could convince me to read a classic is Emma Watson. boy, am i glad.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)

    Loved this book when I was younger, re read it many times and enjoyed it each time. Lovely story line, family values and great character descriptions, at times very emotional.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Brierly

    Little Women ticks so many boxes for me -- 19th century lit, American lit, women's lit, and semi-autobiographical. I do enjoy how Alcott repurposes people from her own family as the March sisters, but even more so I love the allegorical implications of the four young women. Each woman represents a different approach to life for 19th century American women. To marry and raise a family (Meg), to care for one's parents (Beth), to focus on art/pleasure (Amy), and to pursue a balanced life (Jo, based Little Women ticks so many boxes for me -- 19th century lit, American lit, women's lit, and semi-autobiographical. I do enjoy how Alcott repurposes people from her own family as the March sisters, but even more so I love the allegorical implications of the four young women. Each woman represents a different approach to life for 19th century American women. To marry and raise a family (Meg), to care for one's parents (Beth), to focus on art/pleasure (Amy), and to pursue a balanced life (Jo, based on Alcott herself). Meg/Beth are conforming characters, while Amy/Jo are certainly not (at first). As a whole, gender is fascinating in Little Women, especially in regards to Jo (masculine name, masculine traits, female) and Laurie (feminine name, feminine traits, male). Though, I was a bit surprised at (view spoiler)[how quickly Jo transitions from precocious tomboy to a more traditional wife (hide spoiler)] . Little Women is largely an instructional guidebook for young women in America during this time period. There is quite a bit of emphasis on keeping busy with housework while Father is away fighting in the Civil War. I don't read this as particularly sexist, rather, invested in the Puritan work ideals of New England. I expected this book to be rather dry, but it has a lot of dimension. Definitely a few sections worth skimming, as this is long and somewhat episodic. This book is a historical document rather than a riveting read, but it highlights so many of my historical interests.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Nika

    I'm too old for this book🙈 I'm too old for this book🙈

  20. 4 out of 5

    Christy

    This is considered a classic for a reason. Aside from the occasional moralizing (or more than occasional), and from the "little women" domestic speak, this book is a gem of characters in miniature: vain Meg, slangy Jo, angelic (boring) Beth, temperamental Amy, not forgetting the rich and handsome "Laurence" boy. I still have not reconciled myself to the fact that Jo turns Laurie down, and although Jo's eventual mate, Prof Bhaer is dear and says "Prut!", I find refuge in the fact that he is old a This is considered a classic for a reason. Aside from the occasional moralizing (or more than occasional), and from the "little women" domestic speak, this book is a gem of characters in miniature: vain Meg, slangy Jo, angelic (boring) Beth, temperamental Amy, not forgetting the rich and handsome "Laurence" boy. I still have not reconciled myself to the fact that Jo turns Laurie down, and although Jo's eventual mate, Prof Bhaer is dear and says "Prut!", I find refuge in the fact that he is old and will collapse soon of an intellectual German disease, and Amy will die in childbirth, and then Laurie and Jo will realize that their love could indeed stand the test of time and that their souls are truly connected.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ygraine

    i know i'm not the only lesbian in the world to have grown up w strange & intense feelings about this book, an affinity, a confused, confounded identification, a sharp & still-achey betrayal. i think i love it more for what my heart made of it then than for what it is, although what it is is warm & well-intended & generous; re-reading it, the story, the characters are comfortable & familiar, but the things that stir in me are the same unfinished, unsettled feelings i felt when i was eight years i know i'm not the only lesbian in the world to have grown up w strange & intense feelings about this book, an affinity, a confused, confounded identification, a sharp & still-achey betrayal. i think i love it more for what my heart made of it then than for what it is, although what it is is warm & well-intended & generous; re-reading it, the story, the characters are comfortable & familiar, but the things that stir in me are the same unfinished, unsettled feelings i felt when i was eight years old.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Steppingthroughstories

    What a beautiful little read . I fell in love and out of love with a few of the characters as the book went on. But by the end I didn’t want to have to leave the March sisters behind . My heart broke and was fixed again as the book went through their adventures and downfalls

  23. 5 out of 5

    zineti

    First 5 star read of the year. I absolutely loved the tale of little Meg, Jo, Amy and Beth. It was such a lovely story full of lessons in which everyone can see a small part of themselves reflected.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Giulia

    I loved this book when I was a child. I kept reading it and wishing I was one of the famous March sisters. I had a children edition and I don't know if there may be some strong differences from the adult one. I can say though that I would love reading it again in the non-children version. Let's just admire the gorgeous cover of this beautiful edition. This book follows the life of four incredible sisters, Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy, detailing their passage from childhood to womanhood. They, in fact, pa I loved this book when I was a child. I kept reading it and wishing I was one of the famous March sisters. I had a children edition and I don't know if there may be some strong differences from the adult one. I can say though that I would love reading it again in the non-children version. Let's just admire the gorgeous cover of this beautiful edition. This book follows the life of four incredible sisters, Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy, detailing their passage from childhood to womanhood. They, in fact, pass through a series of events which leave a mark on each of them. Illness, war, marriage, love, death, work, responsabilities and, of course, sisterhood. Jo has always been my favorite one of the group. I loved her strong character, the fact she adores literature, both reading and writing and that she isn't attracted by romance at all. “You are the gull, Jo, strong and wild, fond of the storm and the wind, flying far out to sea, and happy all alone.” She is the main character and the one who leads the narration and after a crucial event in their life we can see how her narration signals a successfully completed adolescence. And that's the passage to the second part of their life. “I want to do something splendid...something heroic or wonderful that won't be forgotten after I'm dead. I don't know what, but I'm on the watch for it and mean to astonish you all someday.” I was always fond of the atmosphere in this book. I could almost feel among the rest of them, it seemed I was there when they did something, I was feeling what they were feeling. I appreciated the historic background and I loved it was set in the late 1800. I could imagine the clothes, the ball, the neighborhood, etc. I have never seen the movie, but I would love to watch the 1994 edition, the one with Winona Ryder as Jo March. The cast looks wonderful and I literary can't wait to watch it. This book was for sure a childhood favorite.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Girl with her Head in a Book

     Oh, Little Women, how I love you.  My mother first read this to me when I was six.  Technically this is my second review of it as I also used it for my Book Report in Year 2.  I remember at the time that I kept being summoned out of class to show visitors to the school that I was reading Little Women - having worked as a primary school teacher, I now understand why the headmistress got so excited, it's a fair bit above the usual independent reading done by the average seven year-old.  In my Boo  Oh, Little Women, how I love you.  My mother first read this to me when I was six.  Technically this is my second review of it as I also used it for my Book Report in Year 2.  I remember at the time that I kept being summoned out of class to show visitors to the school that I was reading Little Women - having worked as a primary school teacher, I now understand why the headmistress got so excited, it's a fair bit above the usual independent reading done by the average seven year-old.  In my Book Report I advised people to read it because it had 'ups and downs just like real life' and that my favourite character was Beth.  It was around then that the 1994 film came out so a lot of my classmates were also aware of the story and in Year 4 some of them put on their own informal play of it which was highly interpretative - they assured the teacher that Pa March had died before the end and seemed strangely unappreciative when I pointed out indignantly that he hadn't.  Little Women has always been a Book that I Treasure. Still, after repeated readings, I actually hadn't looked at Little Women in about fifteen years.  I read How to be a Heroine recently though which had some rather disapproving insights into Alcott's most famous work.  According to Ellis, despite having loved it as a child, she found re-reading as an adult revealed Little Women as a mere conduct story, that the girls each had to be destroyed in their way in order to learn Valuable Lessons.  Thinking back, I could see what she meant - Jo's anger at Amy is punished by nearly losing her when Amy falls through the ice, Meg's vanity is rapped sharply at the ball, Amy's selfishness is caught by a humiliation at school and then Beth ... well.  Beth.  She is the Saintly Figure who is without sin and therefore naturally Doomed.  To be honest, I started re-reading it very much braced to hate it this time around.  But.  I didn't. The first chapter was not promising - we are introduced to each of the girls and they step on to the stage very much as cardboard cut-outs.  Meg is the lady-like one (being lady-like is a virtue which has really gone out of fashion in the twenty-first century), Jo is the tomboy, Beth is the sweet one and Amy is spoilt.  Each of the sisters speak in turn with Meg saying something lady-like, Jo speaking roughly about wanting to be a boy, Beth being sweet and Amy talking about Amy.  The 1994 adaptation takes a very feminist reading of Little Women and this in itself is an interpretative impression - Samantha Ellis is right that Louisa Alcott's book is at its heart a conduct story. Lizzie Alcott However.  It is important also to remember that a lot of this is based on Alcott's own experiences growing up as one of four sisters.  And this is most important of all when considering Beth March.  The Death of Beth is one of my early childhood traumas ... but it doesn't actually occur in Little Women contrary to popular belief but rather in the book's immediate sequel, Good Wives.  Still, it is signposted early on that she is one of those souls who nobody quite appreciates until they are gone - Alcott is talking about her own sister, Lizzie Alcott.  Lizzie.  Beth.  It's out in the open - Beth is Alcott's own adored sister who died young.  Then you realise that Beth is no mere stock Angel in the House character, she is a proxy for a flesh and blood young woman who was dearly loved and missed by her big sister who wrote a wonderful book that made millions of reader come to understand and share in her grief.  How many young girls have shed a tear over Beth's death?  It's actually a very beautiful thing to do - whether or not Lizzie really was as sweet-natured as Beth doesn't matter - she is being honoured by Louisa who really loved her and she has been brushed clean of any faults she might have had. A few years ago my mother's book group read Jane Eyre, one of my mother's very favourite books, and she was startled to encounter so much vitriol against Helen Burns, another saintly young Victorian girl who died young.  But again, Helen Burns is really just a proxy for Maria Bronte, adored elder sister to Charlotte who has also immortalised the first sister she lost by writing her for all the world to see.  It is a pure act of love.  In a more unsavoury manner, Dickens repeatedly used the memory of his unspoiled and virginal sister-in-law Mary Hogarth in various of his novels, most notably as Little Nell in The Old Curiousity Shop.  This was because he was grossed out by his own wife Catherine who had weight problems after giving birth to ten of his children but Mary died before she'd done anything yucky like have sex.  He used to publicly refer to the dead Mary as having been his ideal woman.  Dickens had issues.  He was a great writer but not so great with the women. Beth is smallest, Amy = Elizabeth Taylor Beth can be irritating and her adventures are less dramatic than those endured by the other March girls, as if Alcott is treating her gently.  The 1949 film (the Elizabeth Taylor one) casts Beth as the youngest March sister and it does make sense, she is the one who still likes dolls and rejects adulthood.  But in real life, Lizzie was the third Alcott sister and so she is in Little Women.  Beth's pure joy on receiving her piano and her thanks to Mr Laurence brought tears to my eyes - Alcott has made us all grieve for Lizzie and it feels churlish and unpleasant to have any other reaction to her character than sympathy.  Louisa Alcott, I am very sorry for your loss.  You clearly loved her very much. After the discussion in Chapter one about how they want to be good for their father while he is away being a chaplain in the Civil War, the girls wake up to find their mother has given them a book each for Christmas.  It is never quite clear whether this is a copy of Pilgrim's Progress or The Bible (or indeed a more metaphorical internal conscience?) but all the girls 'work' at their books throughout the year.  Jo tells her mother early on that she likes lessons that are not too 'preachy' and indeed Marmee March is very much the Voice Of God within the novel as she explains the moral of whatever has just occurred and then Jo provides a one-liner that drags the tone of the chapter back from direct sermonising. (c) End of March Jo's early lesson to control her temper is an interesting one to consider in our society today.  Amy's destruction of Jo's story is startlingly vicious particularly in contrast to the original offence and indeed Amy herself appears insensitive to the hurt she has caused.  In the twenty-first century we are told that we have 'freedom of speech', the internet allows people free rein to unleash their hatred.  Recently an internet troll who hounded the McCann family found herself unmasked and claimed that she was 'entitled' to exercise her views.  The internet has become a modern lynch mob - it turned on this particular woman and she herself committed suicide.  We are not taught to control our tempers any more.  We are not taught to consider whether our words are useful, kind or necessary.  I can see why a feminist reading might take this message to Jo as one intended to crush her independence but I don't actually think it is.  Amy is a little madam.  But Jo is the bigger person and she should not have let herself be dragged down to her level. It's no secret that I espouse feminism but I think that they give this book an unfair rap.  Many of its values are old-fashioned but they do not necessarily deserve to be forgotten.  Disregarding vanity for domesticity is not that bad a lesson, for men or for women.  We should not devalue the home but rather celebrate the choice and those who choose it just as we celebrate those who do not.  It is the same as Susan Walker of Swallows and Amazons - she is not boring and I would want her around if I was going camping.  We can play around as much as we like and try to avoid responsibility but at the end of the day we will still be children, the adult thing is to look and see where our responsibilities lie.  It is a fairly stark contrast to modern teen literature where the ultimate goal is to Get The Guy but this is really about becoming a person you can respect. For the rest of my review - https://girlwithherheadinabook.co.uk/...

  26. 4 out of 5

    Shannon (kitchandpages)

    Jo is such an honest voice. I love how refreshing this book feels after 150 years. The new full cast audible narration is great and I highly recommend! I enjoy the second part of the story more (Good Wives) so that’s why it’s 4 stars! The original books were two parts and the movie adapts both Little Women and Good Wives.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Peter

    This was bought for me by my youngest daughter on my last birthday. What can I say certainly the kind of book she enjoyed, for me, too sugary and very girly. A fun book that teaches morals and respect, so can't complain if it helps her to show more respect for her elders and help others where she can. This was bought for me by my youngest daughter on my last birthday. What can I say certainly the kind of book she enjoyed, for me, too sugary and very girly. A fun book that teaches morals and respect, so can't complain if it helps her to show more respect for her elders and help others where she can.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sophie Crane

    A beautiful edition of the book. good to carry around, it's also one of my favourite stories of its time A beautiful edition of the book. good to carry around, it's also one of my favourite stories of its time

  29. 5 out of 5

    ☆ sana ☆

    4.5 stars. JO MARCH <33

  30. 5 out of 5

    Mimi

    This was the second time I read this book to refresh my memory of this story while waiting for the movie to come out. I have a better appreciation of it this second time around but I don’t anticipate the movie to be as good as the book. PS: I would like to add an interesting fact about the book, for those who have read it: According to Standard E-books (SE), "Little Women almost wasn’t written: Alcott wanted to publish a collection of short stories instead, but her publisher and her father press This was the second time I read this book to refresh my memory of this story while waiting for the movie to come out. I have a better appreciation of it this second time around but I don’t anticipate the movie to be as good as the book. PS: I would like to add an interesting fact about the book, for those who have read it: According to Standard E-books (SE), "Little Women almost wasn’t written: Alcott wanted to publish a collection of short stories instead, but her publisher and her father pressed her to write a book that would appeal to a wide audience of young girls."..."By 1927 it had been acknowledged as one of the most widely-read novels of the era, and remains widely read today."

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