by Louisa May Alcott , Notes by Siobhan Kilfeather
Category: Fiction / General
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publication date: 26 January 1989
Number of pages: 544
Prizes: Runner-up for The BBC Big Read Top 100 2003.
Runner-up for The BBC Big Read Top 21 2003.
Shortlisted for BBC Big Read Top 100 2003.
Interest Age: from 12
This "Penguin Classics" edition of Louisa May Alcott's inspiring tale of sisterhood, "Little Women", is edited with an introduction by Elaine Showalter. The charming story of four 'little women' - Meg, Jo, Amy and Beth - and their wise and patient mother Marmee, was an instant success when first published in 1868. Enduring hardships and enjoying adventures in Civil War New England, the March sisters have been adored for generations. Readers have rooted for Laurie in his pursuit of Jo's hand, cried over little Beth's death, and dreamed of travelling through Europe with old Aunt March and Amy. Future writers have found inspiration in Jo's devotion to her writing. In this simple, enthralling tale, both parts of which are included here, Louisa May Alcott has created four of American literature's most beloved women. In her enlightening, thoughtful introduction, Elaine Showalter discusses Louisa May Alcott's influences, and her aspirations for "Little Women", as well as the impact the novel has had on such women writers as Joyce Carol Oates and Cynthia Ozick. This edition also includes notes on the text by Siobhan Kilfeather and Vinca Showalter. Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) grew up surrounded by American writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau. Drawing on her experience as a volunteer nurse in the Union Army during the American Civil War, she published "Hospital Sketches" in 1863, followed by gothic romances and lurid thrillers such as "A Modern Mephistopheles" and "A Long Fatal Love Chase". In 1868, she published "Little Women", which proved so popular that it was followed by two sequels. If you enjoyed "Little Women" you might like Elizabeth Gaskell's "Wives and Daughters", also available in "Penguin Classics".
What the papers say:
" The American female myth."
- Madelon Bedell
"From the Trade Paperback edition."
LOUSIA MAY ALCOTT was born in Pennsylvania, in 1832, the second of four daughters. After a period of serving as an army nurse, she published HOSPITAL SKETCHES in 1863, followed by Gothic Romances and lurid thrillers. In 1868-9 she published LITTLE WOMEN, which proved so popular that it was followed by two sequels and several other novels. She died in 1888.
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