Saturday, June 13, 2015

140. Little Women

Little Women
Louisa May Alcott
Around 400 pages

I resent this novel, mostly because the plot did not go the way I wanted it to.  Yes, I realize that I am pouting.  But let me throw my tantrum; it has been a rough week.

The story follows the lives of the four March sisters.  Meg is a beauty who I suppose represents the domestic feminine ideal.  Jo is an aspiring writer and attracts the attentions of the next door neighbor, Laurie.  Beth is nauseatingly sweet and "good".  And Amy.  Well, Amy is kind of a bitch.  If you want a sappier synopsis, check out the trailer for the 1992 film at the bottom of the page.

My main grievances with this novel cannot be revealed without major spoilers, so I will refrain.  This is an important novel, though, since it at least suggests that a woman can have an identity outside of marriage and love.

So a little on the sappy side and it makes The Pickwick Papers sound like a much better novel than it actually was.  Still, worthy of its place on The List.

RATING: ***--

Interesting Facts:

There are two sequels: "Little Men" and "Jo's Boys".  I have read both; neither are that remarkable.

Considered a strong contribution to the feminist canon.

1994 Trailer:


  1. I think I'm the only person in the world who likes how the couples end up in Little Women! But the feminist thing confuses me - I read 'Good wives' (it's split into two books over here) for the first time this year and the Meg and John Brooks chapters make me rage. They're so... not feminist :/

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. I know what you mean. I think it is one of those cases of taking what we could get. And Jo had aspirations beyond marriage? But yeah Meg was pretty sickening.

  4. I know what you mean with your pouting. I read this when I was ten and I'm still holding the grudge.

  5. I loved this book and have read it many times. Of course, I love Jo with her independent ways and the way she stepped in to help the family financially. I never liked who she ended up with--I found him rather condescending. However, loved the books, loved all of the other books by Louisa May Alcott and was totally taken with her storytelling. I read this during a different time for children though, so perhaps if I was a child now reading them, I wouldn't like them.