Little Women book review
Author: Louisa May Alcott
Genre: Young Adult
Age Range: 12+ (Grade 7+)
Reviewed by Cassandra Hsiao
Based on her own whimsical home life, Louisa May Alcott pens a well-loved story of the four poor but contented March sisters: sweet Meg, fragile Beth, lively Jo, and pampered Amy. It’s a coming-of-age story with transformations from naïve girls to beautiful young women. Filled with adventures, plays, pranks, letters, tragedies, and courtships, Part 1 chronicles the sisters’ lives together. Part 2 includes Meg’s marriage, Jo’s aspirations, and Amy’s surprising romance. Sometimes dramatic, sometimes comic, Little Women will certainly capture readers’ hearts from the famous opening line uttered by Jo, “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents.”
Alcott recreated her own family’s experiences through Little Women. One of her journal entries read, “[The book] reads better than I expected. Not a bit sensational, but simple and true, for we really lived most of it, and if it succeeds that will be the reason of it.” Little Women certainly has succeeded through American history. Not only did Alcott live the story, but we live most of it too. In the characters, readers will find parts of themselves hidden inside each sister—arrogance, anger, hopefulness and passion. What the book doesn’t have in terms of depth, it makes up in terms of arresting optimism. Readers will recognize the familiar struggles to conquer weaknesses and fortify strengths in Little Women. Thank you, March sisters for all that you’ve taught me.
First Published @http://www.colapublib.org/teens/reviews/