Little Women by Louisa May Alcott was written in 1868-1869 but still hasn’t gone out of style! This classic novel is set in the Civil War period and is about the March sisters’ experience through all of the peaks and valleys of their lives.
Meg is the oldest of the sisters, and probably the wisest. She cares about her appearance very much, so being a little bit poor makes it difficult for her to be satisfied at first. But once she learns to be content, she realizes that she has everything she needs. Meg is very focused on the future, and does everything she can to be a good wife and mother later on.
Jo is the second oldest, and the most outgoing. She doesn’t like all of the “ladylike” customs and just wants to be comfortable and have fun without all of the rules. Jo is looked at by many as a feminist figure because she is ahead of her time in terms of what girls were supposed to be like. She is a bit of a hot head, and runs into a few quarrels with her sister Amy throughout the story, but eventually learns from her mistakes and matures over time. Jo is also a successful author, but it wasn’t easy.
Beth is a quiet soul, and doesn’t speak too much; but her music speaks louder than words for her. She is an amazing piano player and singer, and is very humble about it. She also loves to knit, sew, and help Marmee around the house. But when Beth contracts a horrible illness, her life is in danger. What will happen?
The youngest sister is Amy, but she is mature beyond her years. Amy is an aspiring artist who hopes to continue professionally. She is all about her presence and being perfectly graceful and “ladylike,” the opposite of Jo, which is why they tend to argue. When Amy finds love with an unexpected character, her life is changed for the better.
Each chapter focuses on one of the girls, so you get a deeper connection to each character and their lives. Little Women is a whopping 759 pages (depending on which version you read), but none of which will leave you bored!
“Little Women is an intriguing book,” says Rylie Fairchild, an 8th grader at Costa Mesa Middle School. “It brings you back to old school time and makes you think about what it would be like to live there.”
This historic book definitely does bring you back to the time period, not only by the story and plot, but how it’s written. This is a beautifully written piece of literature that may be a bit complex for young readers, but it’s perfect for middle and high schoolers!
“I love the relationship that the sisters have and how different they all are, and I like how the book takes place over a year so you can see their growth. I would recommend Little Women to others because it’s a classic and I think everyone should read it at least once in their life,” says India Howerton, another 8th grade student at Costa Mesa Middle School.
If you are searching for a heartwarming, emotional, and popular book to read, try Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, and get inserted into the lovable lives of the March sisters. Don’t like reading? There is also a Little Women film that was made in 2019, starring Emma Watson! It is available on Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and DVD.