I highly admire anyone who was actually able to read this whole thing as a child. Heck, I feel like I deserve a gold star for finishing, and I’m 23!
This was one lonnnnggggg, drawn-out lecture about how to be proper “little women”. Get it? Ha ha. Be charitable, work hard, modesty, frugality, kindness, self-respect, etc… these are all very good things, but subtlety was not Alcott’s strong suit. She beat those lessons into your head like there was no tomorrow.
OK, so despite my complaining it’s not terrible – it just moved incredibly slowly for me. There is very, very little in the way of an actual plot. The summary on the back of my book says that it’s about 4 little girls growing up without their Dad during the Civil War – but the dad and the war played extremely minor parts in the book. She probably could’ve left out any mention of the dad and the war and nothing but the smallest details would have changed. There’s no real mystery, no big climax of the book… the girls get older, and normal life stuff happens to them. Yay…
Anywho, the few good points about this book is that Alcott is a talented writer, at least description-wise (it was her characters and plot that needed work). I definitely caught the pleasant wholesome vibe that I think I was supposed to. And Jo was an okay character – independent and not so silly, at least. And uhhhh… Alcott’s middle name is May. We have something in common! So kudos for that.
I don’t know how she could have meant this to be anything other than a how-to guide to raising proper, perfect little girls. And that made it a really tedious read for me.