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Louisa May Alcott

Two New Movies Prove Appeal of “Little Women”

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What can a 150-year-old novel still offer up to readers in the digitally enhanced 21st century? As proof of the timeless appeal of  Little Women (Bantam Classics), the new movie in theaters Sept. 28 is the 7th film version of the classic. It’s a modern retelling: Newbie director Clare Niederpruem brings Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy into the present day, with contemporary equivalents of 19th century teenage angst (and a father in some endless military conflict instead of the Civil War.)   Niederpruem previously directed Episode 1 of the television woman warrior fantasy series, “Outcast.” Her “Little Women” actors include Melanie Stone as Meg, Sarah Davenport as Jo, Allie Jennings as Beth, and Taylor Murphy as Amy. But wait: There’s more! Another…

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Early Bird Books: 8 Books for Fans of Little Women

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If you’re missing the March sisters, these books are for you. In 1868, author Louisa May Alcott gave us one of the most beloved novels of all time: Little Women. The book tells the story of the four March sisters: Beautiful and responsible Meg, headstrong and intelligent Jo, sweet Beth, and Amy—the baby. Set during the Civil War, the four teenage girls live with their mother Marmee, as their father is serving as a pastor in the war. Alcott loosely based Little Women on her own life, and went on to write two sequels: Little Men and Jo’s Boys. Throughout her life, the author wrote several other novels, but none were ever as popular as the family saga she wrote towards the beginning of her career. If…

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11 Unforgettable Female Friendships in Literature

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Celebrate the unsung heroine of books: friendship. Though Valentine’s Day typically evokes the idea of celebrating romantic relationships, it is slowly but surely evolving to include friendship as well, with the cheesy, yet appropriate, identifier: Galentine’s Day. Regardless of if you’ll be spending this year with a significant other, these literary female friendships will inspire you to be thankful for those devoted, trustworthy friends who always have your back. In literature, shared experiences—be it living under the same harsh conditions or experiencing love for the first time—form the foundation for female friendship. Whether the story takes place 200 years in the past or here in the 21st century, between mothers and daughters or college girlfriends, one thing remains true in…

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The Basic Bitch Exists in Books and We Have Five Favorites

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Fall is the season of basic bitches: pumpkin spice everything, infinity scarves, knee-high boots and scented candles that smell like “Autumn Wreath.” A basic bitch devours these things, or at least Instagrams herself with them on the regular: #lovingfall #pumpkins #uggsarewarm. If you’re unfamiliar with the term, let me educate you: a basic bitch is a girl with no real distinct personality, who loves anything that’s popular and paints her life as an endless stream of duck-face selfies while clutching a Starbucks latte. We all know a basic bitch—hell, sometimes we are basic bitches (pumpkin spice just tastes sooo good!). And basic bitches have been around a lot longer than you’d think: they’ve been cropping up in our books for…

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A Little Women Christmas beautifully illustrates the season’s good will

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I recently took a copy of A Little Women Christmas (Simon & Schuster, 2014) to read with my Reading Buddy, Heidi. Author Heather Vogel Frederick took the story of Mr. March’s surprise homecoming from Louisa Mae Alcott’s classic, Little Women, and adapted it for 4-7 year olds. Who better to review a book than someone it was written for? Heidi is in kindergarten, so we usually spend time working on learning letters and beginning sight words, but I asked Heidi if, that day, she would help me read a new book.  I pulled the book out of my bag and as I told Heidi a little about Little Women, I could see the girl at the table behind us listening,…

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