Little Women: Book One

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Overview

The girls gave their hearts into their mother's keeping, their souls into their father's; and to both parents ... they gave a love that grew with their growth, and bound them tenderly together by the sweetest tie which blesses life and outlives death.

Pretty Meg, tomboy Jo, shy Beth, and vain Amy, the four March sisters, are as different as sisters can be, but more devoted and loyal sisters you'll never find. For though the March girls fight, tease, nag, and scold as all sisters...

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Little Women

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Overview

The girls gave their hearts into their mother's keeping, their souls into their father's; and to both parents ... they gave a love that grew with their growth, and bound them tenderly together by the sweetest tie which blesses life and outlives death.

Pretty Meg, tomboy Jo, shy Beth, and vain Amy, the four March sisters, are as different as sisters can be, but more devoted and loyal sisters you'll never find. For though the March girls fight, tease, nag, and scold as all sisters do, they do so with the knowledge that nothing is as precious as a sister's love. Discover the magic of family in the first part of this classic novel cherished by young girls everywhere.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060511807
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 12/24/2002
  • Series: Charming Classics Series
  • Edition description: Book and Charm
  • Pages: 384
  • Age range: 9 - 14 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 7.62 (h) x 0.76 (d)

Meet the Author

Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) is the author of the beloved Little Women, which was based on her own experiences growing up in New England with her parents and three sisters. More than a century after her death, Louisa May Alcott's stories continue to delight readers of all ages.

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First Chapter

Chapter One

Playing Pilgrims

"Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.

"It's so dreadful to be poor!" sighed Meg, looking down at her old dress.

"I don't think it's fair for some girls to have plenty of pretty things, and other girls nothing at all," added little Amy, with an injured sniff.

"We've got Father and Mother and each other," said Beth contentedly from her corner.

The four young faces on which the firelight shone brightened at the cheerful words, but darkened again as Jo said sadly, "We haven't got Father, and shall not have him for a long time." She didn't say "perhaps never," but each silently added it, thinking of Father far away, where the fighting was.

Nobody spoke for a minute. Then Meg said in an altered tone, "You know the reason Mother proposed not having any presents this Christmas was because it is going to be a hard winter for everyone, and she thinks we ought not to spend money for pleasure when our men are suffering so in the army. We can't do much, but we can make our little sacrifices, and ought to do it gladly. But I am afraid I don't." And Meg shook her head, as she thought regretfully of all the pretty things she wanted.

"But I don't think the little we should spend would do any good. We've each got a dollar, and the army wouldn't be much helped by our giving that. I agree not to expect anything from Mother or you, but I do want to buy Undine and Sintram for myself. I've wanted it so long," said Jo, who was a bookworm.

"I planned to spend mine in new music," said Beth, with a little sigh, which no one heard but the hearth brush andkettle holder.

"I shall get a nice box of Faber's drawing pencils. I really need them," said Amy decidedly.

"Mother didn't say anything about our money, and she won't wish us to give up everything. Let's each buy what we want, and have a little fun. I'm sure we work hard enough to earn it," cried Jo, examining the heels of her shoes in a gentlemanly manner.

"I know I do -- teaching those tiresome children nearlyall day, when I'm longing to enjoy myself at home," began Meg, in the complaining tone again.

"You don't have half such a hard time as I do," said Jo. "How would you like to be shut up for hours with anervous, fussy old lady, who keeps you trotting, is neversatisfied, and worries you till you're ready to fly out of the window or cry?"

"It's naughty to fret, but I do think washing dishes and keeping things tidy is the worst work in the world. It makes me cross, and my hands get so stiff, I can't practice well at all." And Beth looked at her rough hands with a sigh that anyone could hear that time.

"I don't believe any of you suffer as I do," cried Amy, "for you don't have to go to school with impertinent girls, who plague you if you don't know your lessons, and laugh at your dresses, and label your father if he isn't rich, and insult you when your nose isn't nice."

"If you mean libel, I'd say so, and not talk about labels, as if Papa was a pickle bottle," advised Jo, laughing.

"I know what I mean, and you needn't be statirical about it. It's proper to use good words, and improve your vocabilary," returned Amy, with dignity.

"Don't peck at one another, children. Do you wish we had the money Papa lost when we were little, Jo? Dear me! How happy and good we'd be, if we had no worries!" said Meg, who could remember better times.

"You said, the other day, you thought we were a deal happier than the King children, for they were fighting and fretting all the time, in spite of their money."

"So I did, Beth. Well, I think we are. For though we do have to work, we make fun of ourselves, and are a pretty jolly set, as Jo would say."

"Jo does use such slang words!" observed Amy, with a reproving look at the long figure stretched on the rug.

Jo immediately sat up, put her hands in her pockets, and began to whistle.

"Don't, Jo. It's so boyish!"

"That's why I do it."

"I detest rude, unladylike girls!"

"I hate affected, niminy-piminy chits!"

"Birds in their little nests agree," sang Beth, the peacemaker, with such a funny face that both sharp voices softened to a laugh, and the "pecking" ended for that time.

"Really, girls, you are both to be blamed," said Meg, beginning to lecture in her elder-sisterly fashion. "You are old enough to leave off boyish tricks, and to behave better, Josephine. It didn't matter so much when you were a little girl, but now you are so tall, and turn up your hair, you should remember that you are a young lady."

"I'm not! And if turning up my hair makes me one, I'll wear it in two tails till I'm twenty," cried Jo, pulling off her net, and shaking down a chestnut mane. "I hate to think I've got to grow up, and be Miss March, and wear long gowns, and look as prim as a China aster! It's bad enoughto be a girl, anyway, when I like boys' games and work and manners! I can't get over my disappointment in not being a boy. And it's worse than ever now, for I'm dying to go and fight with Papa. And I can only stay home and knit, like a poky old woman!" And Jo shook the blue army sock till the needles rattled like castanets, and her ball bounded across the room.

Little Women Book and Charm. Copyright © by Louisa Alcott. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 483 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(311)

4 Star

(81)

3 Star

(35)

2 Star

(18)

1 Star

(38)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 408 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2012

    Good

    Good, classic novel. Never had to read it in school so decided to read it as an adult. Was pleasantly surprised. A little slow at some points but glad I read it since it is considered a classic.

    9 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 20, 2010

    Classic!!!

    What can I say, I love it, you can't ask for anything more than to have the book and the movie at the same time, is the perfect present for your little girl that likes to read. One of the classic novels of all times. Buy it!!! You wont regret it.

    8 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2012

    Nice read on a cold night!!

    Loved reading this book. Saw the movie years ago. Books are always better as you can get so caught up in the stories!

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2012

    Amazing! I loved it and I still love it even after I am do reading it!

    This is the best book ever! The auorther of this book should get an award for writing such a amazinly great book!

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2012

    Beutiful book

    So romantic wonderfullly written

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2012

    Beautiful

    A beautiful piece of literiture

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2011

    i hate this book!!

    this book was so boring, that i could not help but fall asleep during it. i would reccomend it to anyone who has trouble sleeping. it was a total waste of my money.

    4 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2013

    This is a fabulous book but

    Please don't get it on the nook. It takes a really long time to load and turn pages.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2012

    Wonderful

    I must have read this book 1000 times yet i love to turn the pages and read it agian & again

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2012

    THE GREATEST BOOK OF ALL TIME

    This book is very touching and how they showed kindness to each other. And yes it is a very long book but I think it is worth reading it. In my opinion this is a must read book during middle school to high school. But I as an adult think you shiuld read this bokk again when you are an adult because you might find some thing you never noticed when you are reading it. This book is a real historical fiction book af it shows love for each other and I am not ashamed to tell you tis but I cried at some parts of this story because it was soooooooo touching. Parents/gardian you have to tell your kids to read this book because it changed my life when I was 12 years old. And this was the first time I read this book and I am really happy that I read this book. I hope you are goin to read this book and HAPPY READING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2012

    Boring!!!!!!#!!!!!!!

    Boring!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2012

    Alicially

    This is a very good book and I think anyone who likes reading would enjoy it. Although it is taking me a while to read. It keeps on getting stuck when I try to read it and I can't find the page I'm onand that is really annoying but other then that i think this is a very good book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2011

    Wow wat a wastee

    My friemd and i were going to read but the book only gave her14 dayz to read it but she has dislexea so she cryed because of that!!!

    2 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 11, 2011

    ick

    sooo boreing

    2 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2012

    Dfgvfgghvjjhvf fbydhyfhtbjyc

    Rbghftgxthfivykvrdykggkddujgvb awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2012

    Anyn: part two of the story at burgur res six...

    Letting out a sigh, he stepped inside the house. His aunt, most likely still on the stupid game, yelled at him,"Take of your dam shoes! You're making a racket with your footsteps you dunce!!" "My footsteps aren't even audible you 'dunce'!" He paused midstride and rolled his eyes. His aunt was nearly always wrong when it came to his outfit and the way he presented himself, but she always managed to remind him about things he should have done in the place of say "taking off his shoes", like removing his jacket and backpack. He chuckled to himself as he removed it and set it on a rack in the closet near the door. As he puts back his backpack on, he comes up to his aunt and sees headphones on her and a mirror reflecting the front door to her. He throws his hands up in exasperation,"Aunt, seriously!!? You can't even HEAR ME!!!" He shakes his head and made an effort of making huge steps to the stairs, stomping as loud as he could. He jumped up the flights of stairs to the third floor in wide strides. He walked down the hallway and hummed a lively tune. At his door, he paused and saw a note on the handle. It read "Clean your freakin rom yo brat!" He smiled as he saw the misspells. He ripped the note in quarters and stuffed it into his jean pocket. He turned the cold handle and entered into his room. It was clean, as always. What he didn't get was why his aunt thought a trashcan full of crumpled papers full of his sketches was a mess. He takes a deep breath and bups his head on the chandlier,"Oh. My gosh. I moved that stupid thing up three inches yesterday!" He yelled at the gothic light adornement. His aunt had most likely moved it down so the chain suspending it wasn't pulled up. He reached up and pushed the chandlier out of the way, only to have it crack back into his head when it swung back. He rubbed the back of his head in annoyance and a scrunched up face,"Whatever. Too much work for a day. I'm not fixing you until my brain cells fully heal." He says talking to the still swinging light. He turns around and surveys his bland room. A simple bed, a small desk, and a chair with a lamp. Why couldn't he do his drawings here, because of the camera that would be constantly watching him. He thought about his aunt. Why would she play video games when she had soooo many drawing untencils and the such? She wastes time on the pc when she could be making art. Real 'dunce' i am...he sat on his baed, rolling his eyes at the camera. It wasn't on, yet. It came on only when she was in bed, and it didn't stop rolling until she could stop it. He thought of moving to another room so she couldn't see. But when he did try, she put cams in all rooms. So no matter where he went, her stupid black, empty, and unfeeling eyeball would be following his every innocent move. She started this madness when her art went missing two years ago, when his mother died in a train wreck off of the nearest highway. His aunt was superstitious and thought her "evil sister" had been haunting the house. He lauged at the notion of ghosts and layed back in his bed. Still in his clothes, he sighed and watched the moon cascade down the horizon to the east. His eyes sparkle as he sits up and crosses his legs, watching the moon with more intensity. His vision began to blur and the flashbacks began anew. He smiled faintly as he remembered the nature walks,"Okay. Yeah step there, no no!! Now you're wet!" He remembered the laughing, they were rossing a river...the visions stopped and he slept.

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2012

    Worst book ever!!!!!!

    The only interesting thing is when beth dies

    1 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2012

    Boring

    I love to read and I have tried like 4 times to read this book knowing that its a classic but its just soooo boringgg!!!!! :(

    1 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2002

    Conflicts within Little Women

    Being poor doesn¿t make one any less; In ¿Little Women,¿ by Louisa May Alcott, a family rises above poverty to find joy in the riches of everyday life. The book is about a family that deals with the everyday struggles of money. They lack the social status that they once had when their father owned a school. Now these four girls and their mother try to look past all the hardships in their lives and find the happiness left within. The family consists of four girls and an supportive mother who are determined to make the best of each of their lives given the circumstances she has been dealt. Their father is away working as a Chaplain during the Civil War, so the mother is left empty-handed to support the four children. This story is based on following dreams, whether it be falling in love or discovering happiness in some other sort of passion. The primary conflict of the novel is the March family¿s struggles with money in an area where their neighbors seem to be more well-off. The girls find themselves trying to rise above the talk that goes on about them by focusing more on their inner beauty. They are teenage girls, and they are trying to overlook hardships that seem impossible, and each girl will learn that money does not buy everything. Amy says, ¿I don¿t think that it is fair for some girls to have plenty of pretty things and other girls nothing at all¿, showing their state but she is too young to know that happiness comes from the heart. Beth corrects her childish theory by stating, ¿We¿ve got a father and a mother and each other¿ to display that the prettiest thing is love, which they each hold for one another.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2000

    A Classic

    This was my favorite book as a young girl. Now that I have daughters I read it again to see if I still loved it in light of some of the current literature my 5th grader is reading. I still love it and can't wait for my daughter to read it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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