From Hillside to Thoreau to Irish Immigrants

I just finished the section in Louisa May Alcott A Personal Biography by Susan Cheever about the 3-1/2 years the Alcott Family spent at Hillside (must make a point of touring Hillside, now known as the Wayside, next summer). Cheever spent a couple of pages on Thoreau and how Louisa felt about him and it …

DVD Giveaway Contest – Win by writing about your favorite Little Women character

As promised, and in honor of Louisa and Bronson's impending birthdays (November 29),  I am giving away a free DVD of the acclaimed documentary, Louisa May Alcott The Woman Behind Little Women thanks to the generosity of Nancy  Porter and Harriet Reisen. I've seen this documentary a few times and it is just wonderful seeing …

Motherhood, Marriage, and Keen Observations

Chapter 38 of Little Women, "On the Shelf" again showed me what a keen observer Louisa was.  She never married nor bore any children yet her description of Meg and John's adjustment to parenthood was dead on. I listened to the audio book with my mouth open just about the whole time, in awe at …

Louisa creates the perfect man for Jo (and herself?)

At least that's my take on Professor Bhaer. And what a sweetheart she's created! Kind, gentle, a lover of children . . . an intellectual who can challenge her mind and create stimulating conversation . . . a confidant . . . someone with the courage to be virtuous and defend it . . .  …

The plot thickens

It's become obvious to me that I need to better explore the back story of Little Women in order to fully appreciate it (and to be able to comment on it intelligently!). Plus, your comments keep me on my toes as you know so much more than I do! I found this article yesterday on …

Jo Meets Apollyon – what does that mean?

The other day I was trying to find the chapter in Little Women where Jo shares with Marmee her fears about her quick temper and couldn't find it. No wonder! Yesterday I listened to chapters 7 and 8 from the audio book and found out that "Jo Meets Apollyon" was what I was looking for. …

Reading “Little Women” on the fly

Ever wanted to read Little Women but you're short on time? Here's a free audio book you can download, found at http://librivox.org/little-women-by-louisa-may-alcott/ You can also subscribe to it on iTunes to play on your iPod. Just search for "Little Women" and you'll find it under Podcasts. I'm definitely a better listener than reader, wish all …

The first Realty Show family?

You may recall the Loud Family, the first family to be documented for TV which was shown on PBS in 1971. Known as The American Family, it documented the lives of Bill and Pat Loud and their children, literally through thick and thin. Even though this series was touted as the first reality series, I'd …

Finishing up May’s Memoir

I am getting close to the end of Caroline Ticknor's memoir on May and am beginning to dread the end. I think one of the things so captivated me about May's story was her tragic end. It just seemed so sudden, so random. She was so robust and healthy; her life was pretty much perfect …

More musings from May Alcott Nieriker’s memoir

I'm reading the chapter entitled "Marmee's Journal" from Caroline Ticknor's May Alcott A Memoir; this journal was written in the last year of Mrs. Alcott's life. There were several little things I noticed that I wanted to share. First, there was an excerpt from one of May's letters about an episode in her drawing class. …

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