Chapter I. Playing Pilgrims

From the new Little Women 150 blog reflecting each week on a chapter in Alcott’s classic, here is chapter one:

Little Women 150

By Jan Turnquist

I love the opening lines of Little Women. “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents,” may not be on a list of “Best Opening Lines,” but it is on my personal list of favorites.  From the very start, this chapter offers a feeling of optimism and life even while introducing the four sisters in the midst of a difficult moment.   This first chapter, “Playing Pilgrims,” establishes the personalities of Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy as refreshingly real and imperfect.  They tease and squabble as siblings do. But they are also warm companions in a home that is a safe refuge from a cold and dangerous world set against the backdrop of the Civil War.  Right from the beginning the reader can experience that Little Women is a story based on love.

My experience at Orchard House has blended inexorably with my experience of the book itself.  Because

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