Synopses & Reviews
Since its release nearly one hundred and fifty years ago, Louisa May Alcott's classic Little Women
has been a mainstay in American literature, while passionate Jo March and her calm, beloved "Marmee" have shaped generations of young women. Biographers have consistently credited her father, Bronson Alcott, for Louisa's professional success, assuming that this outspoken idealist was the source of her progressive thinking and remarkable independence.
But in this riveting dual biography, Eve LaPlante explodes those myths, drawing on unknown and unexplored letters and journals to show that Louisa's "Marmee," Abigail May Alcott, was in fact the intellectual and emotional center of her daughter's world. It was Abigail who urged Louisa to write, who inspired many of her stories, and who gave her the support and courage she needed to pursue her unconventional path. Abigail, long dismissed as a quiet, self-effacing companion to her famous husband and daughter, is revealed here as a politically active feminist firebrand, a fascinating thinker in her own right. Examining family papers, archival documents, and diaries thought to have been destroyed, LaPlante paints an exquisitely moving and utterly convincing portrait of a woman decades ahead of her time—and the fiercely independent daughter who was both inspired and restricted by her mother's dreams of freedom.
A story guaranteed to turn all previous scholarship on its head, Marmee and Louisa is a gorgeously written and deeply felt biography of two extraordinary women as well as a key to our understanding of Louisa May Alcott's life and work.
"A most original love story, taut and tender." ---Stacy Schiff, author of Cleopatra: A Life
Based on newly uncovered family papers, this groundbreaking and intensely moving portrait of Louisa May Alcott's relationship with her mother will completely transform our understanding of one of America's most beloved authors.
About the Author
Eve LaPlante is a great niece and a first cousin of Abigail and Louisa May Alcott. She is the author of Seized, American Jezebel, and Salem Witch Judge, the winner of the 2008 Massachusetts Book Award for Nonfiction. She is also the editor of a collection of Abigail May Alcott's private papers. She lives with her family in New England. Karen White has been narrating and directing audiobooks for more than a dozen years and has well over one hundred books to her credit. Honored to be included among AudioFile's Best Voices 2010 and 2011, she is also an Audie Award finalist and Best Audiobook of the Year winner and has earned multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards for narration and direction.Publishers Weekly says of Karen's narration of Nothing to Envy by Barbara Demick, "Karen White delivers a stunning reading, her character interpretations are confident and well-rounded, and she forges a strong bond with the audience."Speaking of Audiobooks says, "Karen is one of my auto-buy narrators-if I think a book may interest me, her narration will sway me to give it a try."