The Other Alcott by Elise Hooper


Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott, is a solid piece of classic American literature. Those of us who read the book or even just loved the movie (movies), basically fell in love with strong-willed Josephine (Jo) March and her passel of sisters-Amy, Meg, and Beth. Josephine was a tomboy and a nonconformist. Meg was the eldest and sensible to a fault. Beth had the biggest, purest heart. And Amy…. Well, Amy was adorable and a very comical character.

Amy wore a clothes pin on her nose because she was terribly vain. At one point, Amy throws Josephine’s manuscript into the fire in a fit of jealousy. The sisters were polar opposites and Amy was portrayed as a superficial ninny who was favored by her Aunt and frustrated the heroine to no end.

Many people are aware Little Women was based upon Louisa May Alcott’s life growing up in Massachusetts with her sisters. The Other Alcott, by Elise Hooper, delves into an aspect that many haven’t considered.  Was May Alcott so much like Amy March in real life? What were her real aspirations? What was it like growing up in the shadow of a sister who was a literary celebrity?

Meanwhile, May was trying desperately to carve out her own destiny as an artist. She traveled artistic circles during a time when art was changing drastically. She had a husband, a circle of friends, and her own life.

If you loved Little Women, you would probably enjoy The Other Alcott, by Elise Hooper, which is an adventure in perspective and a thrilling journey through the art world of the time-and also a journey into the ever-so-complicated world of sisterhood.

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