Rummanah Aasi
  I found my next book while doing grocery shopping at Costco. I got easily distracted by their table of books displayed in the aisles while I was on my way to grab something. My eye caught a title that made me take a second look, open and read the exerpt, and then immediately put it on my list to read. The book I''m talking about is called The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott.

Description: Based on some facts from her journals and other works, author Kelly O'Connor McNess imagines Alcott's 1855 summer experience in which she falls in love in a small town in New Hampshire, but must choose between her heart and her ambition to become a writer in Boston.

Review:  I distinctly remember reading Little Women in 7th grade. My good friend Amelia had lent me her gorgeous illustrated, hardcover copy of the book. I loved the book, but was a bit frustrated about why Laurie and Jo didn't end of together. I didn't understand why Jo choose the German professor and why of all the characters Amy got to have Laurie. As you can see, I still fume about it. ;)
    McNess's debut novel asks what inspired Alcott to write Little Women and the relationship between Jo and Lawrence. I thoroughly enjoyed this bittersweet romance. I know the basic facts about Alcott's personal life such as how her family lived in poverty due to the fact that her father, Bronson, had strict philosophies. McNess does a great job in recreating the nineteenth-century milieu. I was easily transported back in time and could vividly picture Alcott's world. Louisa's character is easily likeable: ambitious, assertive, and passionate about wanting independence. Her struggle to fulfill her dream job as a writer and be financially independent really struck a chord with me. Louisa's father is portrayed complexly in the story. I couldn't figure out if I disliked him for what he put his family through or admire him by staying true to his beliefs. Other characters from Alcott's neighborhood such as Joseph Singer and Louisa's characters are models for the characters in Little Women. When I read this book, I thought of how similar it is in themes and characters with the movie Becoming Jane, which I really enjoyed too. Overall, I thought the book was well written and fans of Little Women will surely enjoy it.   

Rating: 4 stars

Words of Caution: There is an allusion to sex, which happens in the background and can be inferred. This book is a pretty tamed romance that I wouldn't be hesitate to recommend to teens.

If you like this book try: Romancing Miss Bronte by Juliet Gael
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