An Old Fashioned Girl

I can’t think of too many works of fiction that I’ll read at all, let alone read again; but I am continually inspired and encouraged by almost every book I’ve read by Louisa May Alcott.

Thanks to a site I discovered a few years ago that offers a variety of LMA books for online reading, I was finally able to read Little Women in its entirety.  And how I laughed and cried as I did!  Then I got my own copy and read it again and again — always finding treasures for my own life tucked into the pages.

Little Women read, I turned curiously to some of the other books listed under Louisa Alcott’s name.  But while I am thankful for the vast amount of reading material available with a few key strokes in the great world wide web, I am not fond of reading books online, and only skimmed enough to know that I wanted to read more.  I finally was able to complete another real book with pages and covers — Louisa May Alcott’s An Old Fashioned Girl — and once again was moved by the depth and simple beauty of the story that it told.

Polly, like the March girls of Little Women, is a real life girl, with real life struggles.  The challenges that she faces in the pages of the book aren’t so different from the ones that a girl today might face — that I might face.  That is one of the things that makes these stories the treasures they are: how they show imperfections, strengths and weaknesses — and how the striving, struggling, winning and losing molded the life that was lived, just as it does ours today.

As for Polly, she is the sort of friend that every one should have; she had strengths that are the kinds of things I want to be my strengths. She possesses cheerfulness — even in hardship — resourcefulness, consistency, faithfulness, and a sweet, unselfish love that often conquered the weaknesses she had, and kept her from mistakes that she could have made.  I found her life, with its challenges and victories,  inspiring in a very encouraging sort of way.  Tucked into the story, along with the blossoming of love with womanhood, I again found so many beautiful principles of balance and wisdom that are valuable to learn and to practice.

Next year, perhaps I’ll have yet another favorite read and added to my shelf of treasures to share about — and I am already looking forward to it!

But for now, I’ll have fondly tucked my copy of An Old Fashioned Girl on the shelf next to my copy of Little Women.  And I know that, too, will be read again, savored and pondered in the days to come.  It is one that I hope that you’ll read or re-read, looking for the gold tucked into the pages, hidden amongst the story.  And then I hope you’ll live the lessons you glean, just like I hope that I will.

P.S: Speaking of beautiful, old books and of Lousia May Alcott, I’ve seen some treasures slip through the bookshop of our own dear Lanier. If I’m not mistaken, you may find it near impossible to pull yourself away from the long lines of beautiful titles, so many of which seem to be clamoring to find a place in your home.  I can assure you it is well worth the time to look, even if you manage to resist a purchase (by pure necessity — it is the only way that one could resist these books, I must admit), just because it is wonderful to imagine so many amazing books all in one place. So indulge in a leisurely stroll through the titles, just because you really must!

Chantel

Chantel

Social Media Manager at Virtual Assistant
A born and raised country girl who is lucky to be married to her best friend. Mommy to our sweet baby Charlotte. Blogger. Virtual Assistant. Writer and Social Media Manager for @kindredgrace & Adornabelle
Chantel

@cbrankshire

country girl married to my cowboy sweetheart. Blogger. Virtual Assistant. Writer and Social Media Manager for @kindredgrace.
A week gone wrong http://t.co/SSW9dAMYho - 1 month ago
Chantel
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conversations between sisters in Christ

  1. Terra says

    I love Rose in Bloom too, Sarah! It’s my favorite book! I have probably read it 10 times – I love it so much. Give me Mack over Mr. Darcy any day. :) I hope you marry someone like him, he’s the best.

  2. Marcia says

    I know this is late, but I love LMA’s books, when I was in 6th grade I did a research paper on her, and i have loved her ever since. “An Old fashioned Girl” is one of her best. I also love “Little Women II: Good Wives”
    And if you have read the book “Eight Cousins” than you must read “A Rose in Bloom”. It is an awesome book.

  3. ~AnneGirl~ says

    I’m a fan of L. M. Alcott, but I have yet to read this book of hers. Thanks for doing this whole “March of Books” blog thing. I LOVE reading and can hardly bear to throw a book away. Ever.

  4. says

    I’m not surprised to see so many comments on this book! I used to keep track of how many times I’d read it in my teen years– I think it was around ten!! :o I just might go for an eleventh time now after reading your review… :)

  5. edith says

    oh, i am really glad that you mentioned this book. i have often wondered why it has been so often overlooked. I think this book is a very charming work! I definetly recommend it!
    Two thumbs up!

  6. says

    You made me want to read An Old Fashioned Girl again! It’s been so long. I’ll have to put it on my list for the summer when school is out and I have no more music theory hanging over my head!

    My personal LMA favorite is Rose In Bloom. I love the allegory of each petal of a girls life unfolding one at a time. I get chills every time I read the last chapter where the hero looks at his Rose and knows she has bloomed.

  7. Kaitlyn says

    I absolutely love Little Women! Louisa May Alcott is a terrific author. I’ll have to add An Old Fashioned Girl to my current reading list. :)

  8. says

    “The gold tucked into the pages, hidden amongst the story.” This is exactly how I feel about Little Women! I’ll be sure to give “An Old-Fashioned Girl” a look.

  9. says

    How funny, I have been reading “Little Men” lately. Indeed, many of her books are available online, and I believe I downloaded “Little Men” to my Kindle for free. I guess I’ll have to write about something else for “March of Books.” ;) Thanks for the tip about “An Old Fashioned Girl”!

      • says

        Amen! I guess we should have mentioned that somewhere–it’s perfectly okay to review a book on your blog that has already been reviewed here at YLCF or that you know a friend is going to review on her blog. :) The more the merrier!

  10. says

    I love An Old Fashioned Girl! It has been my favourite book since I was a child and it is the book that I go to when I need cheering up. It is one of my favourite classics ever.

    I have quite a few Victorian fiction books and adore them as they have such good meanings behind them and there is generally a moral lesson to them.

    • says

      I love vintage books, too! It is a weakness my husband and I both share, which can be dangerous and is why we keep away from book stores unless we have money to spend. :) Hope you find yourself a treasure! :)

      • says

        How fun that you have a weakness for vintage books. I didn’t know that! Me too. My next letter may be full of them now! :D They ARE lovely, aren’t they?

        And I enjoyed your review – especially because “An Old Fashioned Girl” was my favourite, read-when-happy and read-when-sad book from the age of 10 to 17! It still has a special place in my heart.

  11. Jaclynn says

    It has been many years since I have read An Old Fashioned Girl, but you made me want to search out a copy for my own (yes, I don’t have this one yet on my shelf!) and re-read it all over again.

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