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Little women; or, Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy by…
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Little women; or, Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy (original 1868; edition 1939)

by Louisa May Alcott

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20,62430971 (4.07)1147
Member:ablachly
Title:Little women; or, Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy
Authors:Louisa May Alcott
Info:Boston, Little, Brown, 1939 [c1915] 397 p. illus. 22 cm.
Collections:Your library, Jasper's Books
Rating:
Tags:fiction, children's

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Little Women by Louisa May Alcott (1868)

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» See also 1147 mentions

English (295)  Spanish (5)  French (2)  Finnish (1)  German (1)  Italian (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Dutch (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (308)
Showing 1-5 of 295 (next | show all)
I know that I cannot exactly consider myself a "fan" of romances, but this book took me to the extremes of boredom. Not only because it is a romance completely free of conflict, but because the story is just... BORING, with completely bland characters, who have absolutely no differential elements in their personalities. The only thing that allows you to know who's who is by their age, eyes and hair color and maturity level (and I'm not exactly sure about the last one).

And speaking of boring story, it is about four sisters. Their father is fighting in the Civil War and in order to make life less gloomy, they try all sort of stuff to make like seem less tedious. And that's where the boredom begins, because the entire book's purpose seem to be giving life lessons for little children. I'm not saying that they should spend the whole time crying over the absence of a dear family member, but their father is pretty much of an excuse for them to find all kinds of "fun stuff", like outdoor entertainment, balls (interesting thing that they were poor, but still went to every single balls in town) and housekeeping.

When you think the story is going to improve with their lovely neighbor's apparition, the story gets even more... stupid. Laurie adds up an initial conflict with a great potential to make the plot slightly more appealing, but ends up adding even more sugar to the already sugarish story that this book has.

Also, there is a point that the story gets so tedious that Louisa Alcott herself gets bored and starts to put some stories that don't make any sense and add NOTHING useful to the book. Like the part where they write that "newspaper". Or the picnic chapter.

I definitely hated that book. There are so many better options other than this book. ( )
  aryadeschain | Aug 26, 2014 |
I know a lot of people who just rave over this book, but it was really a struggle for me to even get through it. The characters had no depth, the book was preachy, and the ideals it was preaching for the proper behavior of women were bile-inducing. I know, I know, it was written a long time ago, in a world with different ideals, etc. And yes, I know Alcott was a social reformer and a feminist. But my respect for her and what she did can't make me like this book any more...sorry.

I have to kind of agree with Jo's publisher, even though this statement was made as something we were supposed to disagree with in the course of the book...

"People want to be amused, not preached at, you know..." ( )
  sammii507 | Aug 19, 2014 |
One of my all-time favourite!! :) ( )
  ClarisaO | Aug 13, 2014 |
Listened to as part of Craftlit podcast.
  nordie | May 24, 2014 |
I enjoyed reading this yet again. We had a great group discussion at the Vintage Book Circle gathering. I think we were all surprised one way or another how the book had changed since our last reading. ( )
  njcur | May 23, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 295 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (127 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Louisa May Alcottprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
AlmineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Becker, May LambertonIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Burns, RebeccaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Danziger, PaulaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Elberts, G.W.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hughes, ShirleyIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jambor, LouisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
May Lamberton Beckersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Merlington, LauralNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Merrill, Frank T.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pitz, Henry C.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Van Stockum, HildaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vielhomme-Callais, PauletteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
Go then, my little Book, and show all that entertain, and bid thee welcome shall, what thou dost keep close shut up in thy breast; and wish that thou dost show them may be blest to them for good, may make them choose to be pilgrims better, by far, than thee or me.
Tell them of Mercy; she is one who early hath her pilgrimage begun. Yea, let young damsels learn of her to prize the world which is to come, and so be wise; for little tripping maids may follow God along the ways which saintly feet have trod. - adapted from John Bunyan
Dedication
First words
“Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents,” grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.
Quotations
...for love casts out fear, and gratitude can conquer pride. (p75)
You have a good many little gifts and virtues, but there is no need of parading them, for conceit spoils the finest genius. There is not much danger that real talent or goodness will be overlooked long; even if it is, the consciousness of possessing and using it well should satisfy one, and the great charm of all power is modesty. (p82)
Learn to know and value the praise which is worth having, and to excite the admiration of excellent people, by being modest as well as pretty. (p110)
Money is a needful and precious thing, - and, when well used, a noble thing, - but I never want you to think it is the first and only prize to strive for. (p111)
Between Meg and Marmee:

"He's away all day, and at night when I want to see him, he is continually going over to the Scotts'. It isn't fair that I should have the hardest work, and never any amusement. Men are very selfish, even the best of them."
"So are women. Don't blame John till you see where you are wrong yourself." (Chapter 38, Gutenberg.org edition)
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This is the main work for Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. Please do not combine with any adaptation, abridgement, omnibus containing additional works, etc.
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Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
This is a heart-warming story about the four lively March sisters; Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy. It tells of their adventures and struggles while growing up in the 19th century civil war era. This is a story of love, heart-ache, triumph and family. Although the four girls have very different personalities, they help each other grow as they experience life's challenges. 

I particularly like this book because of the close bond between the four sisters. They seem to balance each other out and the love they have for each other and their "Marmee" seems very genuine. This book has been a favorite of mine since I read it and acted in a play version of it as one of the main characters, Beth.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451529308, Mass Market Paperback)

In picturesque nineteenth-century New England, tomboyish Jo, beautiful Meg, fragile Beth, and romantic Amy come of age while their father is off to war.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:34:17 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Chronicles the joys and sorrows of the four March sisters as they grow into young ladies in nineteenth-century New England.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 55 descriptions

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44 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

Five editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0143105019, 0141321083, 0141331747, 0451532082, 0143106651

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