Little Women and Me

Little Women and Me

3.7 12
by Lauren Baratz-Logsted
     
 

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Emily is sick and tired of being a middle sister. So when she gets an assignment to describe what shed change about a classic novel, Emily pounces on Little Women. After all, if she cant change things in her own family, maybe she can bring a little justice to the March sisters. (Kill off Beth? Have cute Laurie wind up with Amy instead of Jo? What was Louisa May Alcott

Overview

Emily is sick and tired of being a middle sister. So when she gets an assignment to describe what shed change about a classic novel, Emily pounces on Little Women. After all, if she cant change things in her own family, maybe she can bring a little justice to the March sisters. (Kill off Beth? Have cute Laurie wind up with Amy instead of Jo? What was Louisa May Alcott thinking?!) But when Emily gets mysteriously transported into the 1860s world of the book, she discovers that righting fictional wrongs wont be easy. And after being immersed in a time and place so different from her own, it may be Emily-not the four March sisters-who undergoes the most surprising change of all. Lauren Baratz-Logsteds winning confection will appeal to fans of Little Women as well as anyone who enjoys a modern twist on an old favorite.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
An English assignment to find something to change in a well-loved novel becomes a catalyst for a trip into a fictional world. When insecure high school freshman Emily March isn’t obsessively trying to turn herself into someone boys will like better than her sisters, she enjoys reading. She knows exactly what she would change about her beloved Little Women: Beth would not die, and Jo, not Amy, would marry Laurie, the boy next door. Her idealizations of the March girls change, however, when she gets sucked into their world, becoming—once again—the middle March sister and competing with her sisters (especially her idol Jo) for a boy’s attention. As Emily adjusts to the lack of modern conveniences (“How I missed Facebook!”), she tries to discern her purpose for entering the novel. Baratz-Logsted (The Education of Bet) fully embraces the corniness of her fish-out-of-water premise (“Talk about being sucked into a book”; “alk about getting lost in a good book”), but those upset over the fates of certain characters in the original will find reason to rejoice in this retelling. Ages 12–up. (Nov.)
VOYA - Christina Fairman
Emily March is, in many ways, a typical high school student whose world revolves around boys, friends, and fashion. Ordinary life dissolves, however, when Emily picks up a copy of Little Women and inexplicably finds herself transported into the book as a fifth March daughter. Emily is wearing 1861 clothing, her hair is pinned up under a bonnet, and, most distressingly, everyone in the novel behaves as if she has always been there. As Emily navigates this altered reality, she discovers that she can only experience events as they occur in the original novel and apparently she cannot change what happens. The storyline parallels the plot of Little Women and features the same familiar list of characters, including Marmee, Jo, Meg, Amy, Beth, and Laurie. This delightful story will appeal primarily to younger teens. Familiarity with Little Women is not necessary, but some readers may be inspired to pick up the original after reading this version. This book does not contain potentially problematic language or subject matter. Its only weakness is the overuse of cultural expressions from 2011. Some, such as "whack" and "dude," seem contrived, while allusions to contemporary pop culture risk dating the book. That point is worth considering for libraries, where readers may pass up the book in a year or two if it contains too many outdated pop references. Nevertheless, teens of the moment will surely overlook those details to enjoy a smart, funny, and engaging novel. Reviewer: Christina Fairman
School Library Journal
Gr 7–9—High school freshman Emily March is sick of being constantly passed over as the middle sister. It was bad enough when it was just her family, but now that her crush is fawning over her sisters, it's too much. When she is assigned to pick a book and write about the one thing she would change in it, she chooses Little Women and she is literally sucked into the story. For the duration of the tale, she is part of the March family as the fifth and, of course, middle sister. Certainly fans of Alcott's work will enjoy the familiar scenes from a modern point of view, not to mention the adventures of an additional sister and the great twist at the end, and they're likely to want to go back and reread the original. Many readers will also applaud Emily's desperate attempts to save Beth from her fate and change Jo's and Laurie's marriage choices. However, for those who have not read the classic, this book gives away far too much and yet doesn't make kids realize how much they're missing. Still, there are definitely lessons to take away from Baratz-Logsted's message about finding your own voice. Overall, this is a well-done companion book for fans of the novel.—Kerry Roeder, Corlears School, New York City
Kirkus Reviews
This latest venture in literary repurposing—19th-century classic to teen chicklit—features an overlooked middle sister whose freshman English assignment propels her into Alcott's novel, where, as sister to Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy, she's overlooked again. Emily assumes she's been sent to change something about the March sisters' story—perhaps she'll save Beth?—yet at first the Marches barely register her presence. Life with the fictional Marches echoes Emily's real one. There, she'd tried and failed to attract a boy with a crush on her older sister. With her knowledge of Laurie's interest in Jo, Emily moves in to nab him first, only to scare him away. Plenty of teen heroines feel invisible, but Emily's indignant reaction and optimistic determination to be noticed set her apart. The story works best when delivering Emily's contemporary-teen take on the classic's more dated elements (Marmee's lectures, the family's preachy good intentions, Victorian gender relations), which haven't worn well. Contradictions abound though. How someone as vivid and feisty as Emily can be ignored in either world is unclear. The fantasy device feels awkward, and themes and plot elements don't quite coalesce. Set churlish quibbles aside, though, and what remains is a consistently entertaining read that delivers a genuinely original heroine and frequently hilarious satire. (Fantasy. 12 & up)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781599905907
Publisher:
Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
11/08/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
1,173,053
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

LAUREN BARATZ-LOGSTED is the author of more than a dozen books for adults and young readers, including The Twins Daughter, Crazy Beautiful, and the Sisters 8 series, which she cowrites with her husband and daughter.


www.laurenbaratzlogsted.com


LAUREN BARATZ-LOGSTED is the author of more than a dozen books for adults and young readers, including The Twins Daughter, Crazy Beautiful, and the Sisters 8 series, which she cowrites with her husband and daughter. www.laurenbaratzlogsted.com  

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Little Women and Me 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Only a talented writer can spin together a tale with such an amazing blend of modern sarcasm and a classic story like that of LITTLE WOMEN. This story includes a plot of twists and turns, a smart alec voice from sarcastic teen Emily, and a conflict throughout. During the tale, Emily matures and learns to defeat the envy that often hurts her. Few things bothered me about this story. When I read LITTLE WOMEN, I found myself in love with Jo's character, but in this book, she is made out to be an annoying show-off. I also disagree with the idea that Jo and Laurie should be together; personally, I love the romance between Professor Bhaer and Jo. Otherwise, I loved this book.
wordforteens More than 1 year ago
I love Lauren Baratz-Logsted. I love her writing style, and I love her plots, and the same goes for this book: I loved Little Women and Me's writing. I loved the plot. (Hell, I was NOT expecting the plot twist at the end.) However, I will warn you now: If you cannot stand boy obsessed characters, this is NOT the book for you. Don't get me wrong; on every other level, I liked Emily a lot. I liked that she has to discover herself and learn things and I like her sass and I like that she loves to write. But the thing that made me struggle so much through this book was her constant obsession with boys. I have a few friends who are like this and they make me want to strangle them when they find a new object for their affections; in a book character, I can't stand the trait at all. It's not like Emily doesn't redeem herself. [SPOILERS] In the last few chapters, she does stand up for herself and grow up and realize that she doesn't need a guy. (Though, I have to admit, the change is rather sudden.) But until that happens, she's absolutely insufferable. EVERYTHING is about changing the story so she can get Laurie, even as she is telling herself that Jo and Laurie should be together. [/SPOILERS] When that's all a character can think about, I just - gah. But besides that - and this a HUGE besides that, as I kept having to put this down for long periods of time to go strangle pillows - I did enjoy it. The plot was interesting and the other characters were portrayed wonderfully.
ckafouros More than 1 year ago
I did enjoy this book. It took awhile (towards the end of the book) for me to really like Emily, since she had some deep middle child issues (can we say pity party much?). I don't agree with the author on Jo and Laurie being together. Like another reviewer mentions earlier, Jo would have changed everything about herself to fit in Laurie's world. Maybe the author should have done some research on the 1800's, for women in particular, since a woman of status (which Jo would have been if she married Laurie) main goal in life was to produce heirs and be a perfect model on femininity. Jo would probably stopped writing, and hence become miserable, killing our beloved free spirited Jo, who wasn't afraid to survive without a husband. Although I did not agree with the authors opinion about Jo and Laurie. I did love watching the main character, Emily evolve in to an unselfish person, and I really found that I enjoyed her getting Laurie to call her "dude". I would recommend reading this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jen, I think I somewhat accidentally emailed you the review, but pretty much, it's definatley a girls only book for anyone who likes Little Women.
pagese More than 1 year ago
I was really excited to start this book. I liked the writing assignment. It sounded like something that I would have liked to have done in junior/high school. But, this story missed its overall mark with me for some reason. I actually liked Emily in present time. She really struggling with who she is. I imagine it's hard to be the middle sister (I have no idea). I also really enjoyed the comparisons she makes between her family and the sister in Little Women and also to the Bronte sisters. But I struggled with her after she's transported into the novel. Emily seems to adapt to world of Little Women a little to easily. The only trouble she seems to have is with key plot points. I think I would have more trouble with actually getting use to the differences. I also have to be honest in saying while I enjoyed reading Little Women, I can't say that it would be a book that I would read over and over. So, I was a little bored with basically reading the story again in this format. I did have fun with the very modern things that Emily did in the story. The way her sisters reacted to her was just great. I also like the twist with Amy and Father, it was unexpected. I also like Emily's reasoning in the end on what she would change in the story. It was a very sound judgement and I liked it. It also left me wondering who really does end up with Lauri (I could not remember for some reason lol).
Icecream18JA More than 1 year ago
Feeling ignored and upstaged by her older and younger sisters, middle child Emily March receives an assignment from her freshman English teacher. What one thing would she change about a favorite book to make it perfect? While she ponders whether preventing Beth¿s death or fixing Jo¿s romance would make Little Women perfect, Emily March finds herself pulled into the book. She finds herself sitting in the March living room listening to Jo bemoan the absence of presents at Christmas. Since she¿s joined the March family and there is only one boy in sight, Emily decides that Laurie will be her boyfriend. The author and Marmee point out that each of the sisters has one character flaw which needs correcting. Emily realizes that her flaw is jealousy. By admiring Jo and loving Beth,¿by trying to fix a problem in the story, Emily hopes to return to her own time and family. Her observations about life in 1860s America are both funny and touching. Anyone who loved reading Little Women will enjoy this book. Many of us absolutely agree with Emily about the changes she contemplates making to the original storyline.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jenscorner More than 1 year ago
Emily's English teacher gives her class an assignment: pick a book you love and list 3 things you like about it & 1 thing you would change. Emily picks Little Women and the next thing she knows, she's sucked into the story she was reading. Why was she sucked into the book? How does she get home? Is she the only character in the book who's been sucked into it? Can she alter the story and fix the wrong that was done? I lvoed every minute of this book. The author has a talent for writing an intriguing story you don't want to leave. I hope you love Little Women And Me as much as I did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Havent read it yet but sounds good i want to be a middle sister though
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Evry time i review it sayanonomus. And pl copy meh!! Ethier make a good review or not!!!