Marmee & Louisa: The Untold Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Mother
Louisa May Alcott was one of the most successful and bestselling authors of her day, earning more than any of her male contemporaries. Her classic Little Women has been a mainstay of American literature since its release nearly 150 years ago, as Jo March and her calm, beloved “Marmee” have shaped and inspired generations of young women. Biographers have consistently attributed Louisa’s uncommon success to her father, Bronson Alcott, assuming that this outspoken idealist was the source of his daughter’s progressive thinking and remarkable independence.
But in this riveting dual biography, award-winning biographer Eve LaPlante explodes these myths, drawing from a trove of surprising new documents to show that it was Louisa’s actual “Marmee,” Abigail May Alcott, who formed the intellectual and emotional center of her world. Abigail, whose difficult life both inspired and served as a warning to her devoted daughters, pushed Louisa to excel at writing and to chase her unconventional dreams in a male-dominated world.
In Marmee & Louisa, LaPlante, Abigail’s great-niece and Louisa’s cousin, re-creates their shared story from diaries, letters, and personal papers, some recently discovered in a family attic and many others that were thought to have been destroyed. Here at last Abigail is revealed in her full complexity—long dismissed as a quiet, self-effacing background figure, she comes to life as a fascinating writer and thinker in her own right. A politically active feminist firebrand, she was a highly opinionated, passionate, ambitious woman who fought for universal civil rights, publicly advocating for abolition, women’s suffrage, and other defin-ing moral struggles of her era.
In this groundbreaking work, LaPlante paints an exquisitely moving and utterly convincing portrait of a woman decades ahead of her time, and the fiercely independent daughter whose life was deeply entwined with her mother’s dreams of freedom. This gorgeously written story of two extraordinary women is guaranteed to transform our view of one of America’s most beloved authors.
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Review: Marmee and Louisa: The Untold Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her MotherUser Review - Jennifer Locke - Goodreads
Fascinating dual biography of Louisa May Alcott and the person who most shaped her life and encouraged her writing: the real "Marmee." Wrapped up in their story are the stories of abolitionism, early ... Read full review
Review: Marmee and Louisa: The Untold Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her MotherUser Review - Robin Moore - Goodreads
Very surprised by this book. I had to read it for a class and thought it would be ho-hum. Instead I found it very interesting. Both Louisa May Alcott and her mother, Abigail May Alcott are very ... Read full review
Drawing Toward Some Ideal Friend
Sacrifices Must Be Made
This Sharp Sorrow
Looking to My Daughters Labors
To Drag Lifes Lengthening Chain
The Best Woman in the World
The Bitter Drop in This
From May to March
Welcome to My Fortune
Thou Excellest Them
Stay By Louie
Believe in Dreams