In her follow-up to Year of Wonders
, Geraldine Brooks has taken historical fiction to another dimension altogether. Using America's Civil War as her frame, she plants a famous (but deeply mysterious) literary figure at its center: Mr. March, the absent father in Louisa May Alcott's classic, Little Women
. The result is a wholly original novel, a rich re-imagining of the nation's political and literary foundations, and arguably Brooks's finest work to date.