Generations of people - young and old, male and female - have fallen in love with the March sisters of Louisa May Alcott's most popular and enduring novel, Little Women. Talented tomboy and author-to-be Jo, tragically frail Beth, beautiful Meg, and romantic, spoiled Amy remain united in their devotion to each other and their struggles to survive in New England during the Civil War.
It is no secret that Alcott based Little Women on her own early life. While her father, the free-thinking reformer and abolitionist Bronson Alcott, hobnobbed with such eminent male authors as Emerson, Thoreau, and Hawthorne, Louisa supported herself and her sisters with "woman's work," including sewing, doing laundry, and acting as a domestic servant. But she soon discovered she could make more money writing. Little Women brought her lasting fame and fortune, and far from being the "girl's book" her publisher requested, it explores such timeless themes as love and death, war and peace, the conflict between personal ambition and family responsibilities, and the clash of cultures between Europe and America.
Public Domain (P)2010 Tantor Media
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For a review of this classic book itself, I think most people would seek a review from a number of other sites. So instead of commenting on the novel Little Women, my comment is about the quality of the audiobook: very good!! There were around 10 different copies to chose from within the unabridged audiobooks of Little Women. I really like this one because the narrator's voice adds interest to the text, but is not overly expressive, like other versions. The pace is also great. Listening to this reader sounds more like you're listening to friend chat, and not like you are listening to someone carefully reading each distinct word. Great job!
"I thourght I knew this story."
I thought I knew this tale I was completely wrong it's more than I ever knew ,Genius dose in deed burn and very brightly ,I loved every minute of this story a great drama about love ,sister ,family and friendship. If you like me thought the movie's sufficed you are wrong do your self a favor and lose yourself in a truly brilliant novel . And for all you tom boys out there Jo is still the queen.
"A Pleasant Surprise"
You'd think I wouldn't be surprised by enjoying this classic, but I was. I apparently read an abridged book, probably the one given to my daughter, and thought that the story ended at the end of part one in the audible format. When I saw the musical last year I thought they'd made up the second half of the play. I was wrong and things were wound up beautifully in the second part of the book. This book was my grandmother's favorite. When I asked her why she simply said, "I've read the book so often that the characters feel more like old friends." The characters do just come to life and feel so real. If you are in the mood for a gentle, moral tale and would like to make new "friends" you might to check this out. I will definitely listen to it again.
"A Wonderful Tale Ruined by an Actor"
A totally different narrator would have been a massive plus to this recording. I'm certain that someone must like her reading, but the simpering performance takes the strong women in the story and turn them into caricatures of themselves.
I cant think of very few highlights. From the very beginning, the actor's reading voice is so off putting that it takes away from the story.
As well-spoken as the narrator is, and she clearly goes into this with the best of intentions, both her general narration and the voices she assigns to the characters are so similar, it's difficult to discern when characters are actually speaking.
Additionally, the very purpose of Little Women is the growth the characters experience as they go through their trials; the narrator, however, maintains the same voices for the characters throughout the book. From the beginning, her characterization of these young women is so simpering and poorly "faux period," that it's difficult to even begin to enjoy listening to the book.
The book is a classic; why should I play editor? It stands alone without my tampering.
Although I appreciate the amount of work that went into recording this version, I simply cannot recommend it. The narrator truly does ruin a book that has stood the test of time, for me.
"A primer on how to be proper little madams"
I knew this book only from hearsay and the Winona Ryder movie and I was feeling in a classic sort of mood when I bought it but not wanting to work too hard to listen to it. Its not Trollope although its amusing, its not Henry James but it has an American in Europe, it doesn't have the polish of Edith Wharton but it is a lovely book for all that.
It has some indications of feminism in it but most of all it is a book that can be seen as a guide for adolescent girls wanting to do the right thing in early womanhood.
Its a hark back to the past but some of the lessons learnt still have value today. A most enjoyable listen but relieved both to be a male and that its the 21st century!
"Ruined by narrator"
The narrator sounds like one of those cheesy 1950's infomercials. She is absolutely painful to listen to.
Jo! I've always admired how Jo followed her dreams, even though writing was not considered a proper choice for a woman at the time.
By hiring a different actor. Not to be flip, but this woman needs to find a new career. Truly dreadful.
I don't see any scene as extraneous. Every bit adds to the fabric of the characters and their world.
"Boring Narrator and Boring Story"
I do like reading and listening to classical literature, but this story is extremely uninteresting and boring. The narrator just made it worse. I stopped listening after the first 45 minutes because I was falling asleep and cared nothing for the characters.
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