I absolutely cannot read this again or it will be ruined from my 10-year-old remembrance of it. I really don't want that to happen. You need to be a bit naive yourself to truly appreciate the nunnish thoughts and adventures of 4 perfectly innocent preteens and teenagers of the 1860s. I remember reading it and wishing that I had sisters to perform plays with and write newspapers with and that I had a next door neighbor to fall in love with. But trying to read the book again when I'm in my 30s, I can't help but roll my eyes at the naive little women in this book.
I just read March
, a modern writer's tale of the "little women's" father during his time in the civil war. There's a reason that their father writes nicey nice letters home that don't tell of the atrocities of war. There's a reason that he doesn't want to come home when he's injured. And that reason is that the innocent virginal world of the the March family back in Connecticut seems like a silly dream world in comparison to the realities of war and slavery that he's dealt with.
I need to keep the silly dream world of the March family alive as a favorite in my mind. I want to still feel a connection to Jo, the sister who wished she had been born a boy and who loved to write. I want to still cherish shy Beth and look up to grown-up Meg. And I don't want to dislike Amy's snobbishness anymore than I already did. I want to not wonder how a "poor family" can afford a maid. So I think I'll not go beyond page 100 in my re-read of Little Women
. Instead, I'll save it for a daughter I might have one day and hope that she's not too sophisticated to read it before her innocence is lost to the materialistic world we live in.