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Book Review: Little Women

15 Nov

I read this book for the first time cover-to-cover in the 7th grade. It was instrumental in helping me deal with a menagerie of troublesome times. I hope everybody reading this has at least heard of this amazing book, if not read it. For those of you that have not had this memorable experience by Louisa May Alcott, I can outline briefly main points and some great things I think make this books one of ‘the greats.’

When the book starts, the oldest daughter is Meg, at 16 years old, and the youngest daughter is 12, Amy. The middle girls are Jo and Beth. The main character, or at least the one who gets into the most scrapes, is Jo, and she quickly makes the acquaintance of the young boy next door, Theodore Laurence, known to everybody but Jo as Laurie. Jo fondly calls him Teddy, but these two friends never become romantically involved, just grow and prosper as the best of friends. Jo is rambunctious and ‘boyish’ and is always getting into trouble for it. Meg becomes a domestic goddess in time, being the first to marry and lead a household, after many adventures in the social circles of those richer (yet poorer in values) than her. Beth leads a quiet life, helping those around her with their daily chores, and being a model girl in every way. She helps the poor, which eventually leads to her getting sick with scarlet fever after being around unfortunate persons afflicted with that illness. This decline of her health extends all throughout the book. The youngest, Amy, has dreams of being a great painter and of living in high society. She gets a chance to travel the world near the finish of the book.

But one of the most beloved caregivers, advice givers, and amazing character of the book is Mrs. March, the mother hen to this flock of geese. She helps everybody in the family with their small problems, and helps Jo especially with her temper. She is a symbol of what a mother should be, always speaking from her heart, and being impartial judge on all matters trivial and important.  “Touched to the heart, Mrs. March could only stretch out her arms, as if to gather children and grandchildren to herself, and say, with face and voice full of motherly love, gratitude, and humility–‘Oh, my girls, however long you may live, I never can wish you a greater happiness than this!'” Chapter 47, pg. 578

Stay tuned for other book reviews,
xoxo, ~ Harlow

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