Louisa May Alcott never intended to write Little Women. She had dismissed her publisher’s pleas for such a novel. Written out of necessity to support her family, the book had an astounding success that changed her life, a life which turned out very differently from that of her beloved heroine Jo March. In Louisa May Alcott, Susan Cheever, the acclaimed author of American Bloomsbury, returns to Concord, Massachusetts, to explore the life of one of its most iconic residents. Based on extensive research, journals, and correspondence, Cheever’s biography chronicles all aspects of Alcott’s life, from the fateful meeting of her parents to her death, just two days after that of her father. Sh...
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography Louisa May Alcott is known universally. Yet during Louisa's youth, the famous Alcott was her father, Bronson—an eminent teacher and a friend of Emerson and Thoreau. He desired perfection, for the world and from his family. Louisa challenged him with her mercurial moods and yearnings for money and fame. The other prize she deeply coveted—her father's understanding—seemed hardest to win. This story of Bronson and Louisa's tense yet loving relationship adds dimensions to Louisa's life, her work, and the relationships of fathers and daughters.
Although the publication of Little Women in 1868 earned Louisa May Alcott tremendous popularity, for a long time she was thought of as a writer of children's stories and considered—at best—a minor figure in the American literary canon. Now, at the end of the twentieth century, Alcott's vast body of work is being celebrated alongside the greatest American writers, and this collection shows why. The Portable Louisa May Alcott samples the entire spectrum of Alcott's work: her novels, novellas, children's stories, sensationalist fiction, gothic tales, essays, letters, and journals. Presenting her more daring works, such as Moods and Behind a Mask (both reprinted in their entirety), alongside the familiar heroines of Little Women, this singular collection offers readers a rich and wide-ranging portrait of this talented, prolific, and influential writer.
The 19th-century author of LITTLE WOMEN, Louisa May Alcott kept copious journals. Like her fictional alter ego, Jo March, Alcott was a free spirit who longed for independence. In her journals are found hints of Alcott's surprisingly complex persona as well as clues to her double life as an author not only of "high" literature but also of serial thrillers and Gothic romances. 31 photos.