Little Women is a classic, first published in 1868 and chronicles the journey of four March Sisters; Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, from childhood to womanhood. Even though this book is 150 years old, parts of it still seem relevant in today’s context, reaffirming the age-old adage, “the more things change, the more they stay the same.”
The story itself is quite simple; four little sisters in a lower-middle-class family with high moral values learn what it means to grow up without much means, but with a kind and helpful soul, which reaches out to help less fortunate souls even at the cost of oneself.
Even though their upbringing is pretty much the same, each sister has a distinct attitude and expectation towards life. While the eldest, Meg is the sincerest of the lot and a little woman in the truest sense, the second in line, Jo is a tomboy with a knack for mischief and a strong willful soul, hell-bent on making a mark on the world through her writing. The third, Beth is the kindest of the lot and takes care of everyone, be it her family members, people around her, animals and even discarded dolls! Amy is the youngest and is the most worldly of the lot, though not exactly spoilt. She seems to know how the world works and even though has little means, aims to make her mark in the society and become rich through marriage and inheritance from her rich Aunt.
What follows is their trials and tribulations through life, written in such a captivating manner that you would find hard to let go of the book until the end. The writing although simple, has a certain finesse to it, making it a good resource for anyone hoping to improve their command of the English language.
Owing to the era it was written in, Louisa May Alcott goes to great lengths to ensure moral and life lessons are made available throughout the book for the little women and even men. Though in today’s world, at times it can seem out of place or a little too goody-goody.
Nonetheless, Little Women is an engaging read and is a must for anyone who loves classic literature and does not shy away from trivialities of life.