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The Other Alcott: A Novel
By: Elise Hooper
List Price: $15.99
Your Price: $9.24
(as of: 11/23/17)
Manufacturer: William Morrow Paperbacks
ISBN: 0062645331
Publication Date: 2017-09-05
Release Date 2017-09-05
Availability: Usually ships in 24 hours


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Product Description:

A People Magazine and POPSUGAR pick!

“[May's] adventures illuminate the world of intrepid female artists in the late 1800s […] The Other Alcott comes alive in its development of the relationship between Louisa and May.”  --The New York Times

Elise Hooper’s debut novel conjures the fascinating, untold story of May Alcott—Louisa’s youngest sister and an artist in her own right.

We all know the story of the March sisters, heroines of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women. But while everyone cheers on Jo March, based on Louisa herself, Amy March is often the least favorite sister. Now, it’s time to learn the truth about the real “Amy”, Louisa’s sister, May.

Stylish, outgoing, creative, May Alcott grows up longing to experience the wide world beyond Concord, Massachusetts. While her sister Louisa crafts stories, May herself is a talented and dedicated artist, taking lessons in Boston, turning down a marriage proposal from a well-off suitor, and facing scorn for entering what is very much a man’s profession.

Life for the Alcott family has never been easy, so when Louisa’s Little Women is published, its success eases the financial burdens they’d faced for so many years. Everyone agrees the novel is charming, but May is struck to the core by the portrayal of selfish, spoiled “Amy March.” Is this what her beloved sister really thinks of her?

So May embarks on a quest to discover her own true identity, as an artist and a woman. From Boston to Rome, London, and Paris, this brave, talented, and determined woman forges an amazing life of her own, making her so much more than merely “The Other Alcott.”

“Elise Hooper’s thoroughly modern debut gives a fresh take on one of literature’s most beloved families. To read this book is to understand why the women behind Little Women continue to cast a long shadow on our imaginations and dreams. Hooper is a writer to watch!”—Elisabeth Egan, author of A Window Opens

 



Growing up in the shadow of a famous sibling is challenging, even if you have your own distinct talents. May Alcott, sister of author Louisa May Alcott, was a talented painter and artist in her own right, and even illustrated Little Women when it was originally published. Louisa Alcott supported her family with her writing, but May longed to strike out on her own, and after many struggles, May went to Europe to study in various artists’ studios and advance her own career.

Although she eventually became financially less dependent upon her sister, May had a strong, unbreakable connection with the formidable Louisa. Through poverty, illness and deaths of their sister, mother and other family members, Louisa and May remained close, despite geographic separation. May married and remained in France, giving birth to a daughter who would be brought up by Louisa and their other surviving sister, Anna.

The Other Alcott is a fictionalized account of the years after publication of Little Women, when the Alcott family, especially Louisa May, became famous not only in their community in Massachusetts, but throughout the world. May struggled with her identity as Louisa’s character, “Amy,” as well as May’s desire to be recognized for her own merit. The Other Alcott balances these divergent themes well, but does bog down a bit in describing artistic techniques and May’s day to day drawing experiences. Perfect for fans of Little Women, the Alcott family, or the life of a struggling artist during the latter part of the 19th century, The Other Alcott is a deep and satisfying piece of historical fiction, a fantastic first novel for author Elise Hooper.

 
By: Joyce Greenfield, ReaderToReader.com


 
     
 
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