The Spring Girls
A Modern-Day Retelling of Little Women
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Four sisters desperately seeking the blueprints to life—the modern-day retelling of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women like only Anna Todd (After, Imagines) could do.
The Spring Girls—Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy—are a force of nature on the New Orleans military base where they live. As different as they are, with their father on tour in Iraq and their mother hiding something, their fears are very much the same. Struggling to build lives they can be proud of and that will lift them out of their humble station in life, one year will determine all that their futures can become.
The oldest, Meg, will be an officer’s wife and enter military society like so many of the women she admires. If her passion—and her reputation—don’t derail her.
Beth, the workhorse of the family, is afraid to leave the house, is afraid she’ll never figure out who she really is.
Jo just wants out. Wishing she could skip to graduation, she dreams of a life in New York City and a career in journalism where she can impact the world. Nothing can stop her—not even love.
And Amy, the youngest, is watching all her sisters, learning from how they handle themselves. For better or worse.
With plenty of sass, romance, and drama, The Spring Girls revisits Louisa May Alcott’s classic Little Women, and brings its themes of love, war, class, adolescence, and family into the language of the twenty-first century.
I haven't even read this book yet, but if Anna Todd is writing it, it's bound to be one heck of a story!
Modern Day Little Women
The Spring Girls is a modern-day version of the best selling classic, Little Women, by Louise May Alcott. The book focuses on four sisters, Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy Spring. They live in New Orleans, on a military base, with their emotionally, unavailable, mother. The girls desperately miss their father, who has been fighting in Iraq, for several months. The characters come alive as the author brings the reader deep into the hearts and minds of the Spring sisters.
The oldest Spring sibling, Meg, yearns to be a mother and marry well. She desperately wants to erase her past mistakes and ruined reputation. Having a wealthy and prestigious husband by her side, Meg feels, will do wonders for her self-esteem and social status. Jo, however, is just the opposite. She has no interest in finding love or getting married. She wants a successful career in NY as a journalist. Beth is the co-dependent workhorse of the family. It bothered me that Beth was allowed, and even expected, to pick up, clean and cook for the entire family. Beth was riddled with social anxiety, stayed in most of the time, and was homeschooled. Amy, the youngest sibling, was twelve and treated like a princess. All four girls would grieve their father’s absence differently, but the older three would face their demons and begin to emotionally grow and change.
I enjoyed reading The Spring Girls but found the pace slow. The writing is very good, however, and the storyline captivating.
Thank you, Gallery Books and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.
Anna Todd takes on Little Women
Little Women fans, here is the modern-day retelling that you didn't know you needed.
Anna Todd, whose After series fulfilled every Harry Styles' fan's fantasies, takes on the March sisters, here with the surname Spring. Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy are living in New Orleans with their mother Meredith while their father is stationed in the Middle East. Todd nails the sense of fear, uncertainty, and loneliness that the girls feel in the absence of their father. She also does a solid job of representing the personalities of the sisters.
Meg remains the confident oldest sister. In Anna Todd's world, this translates into all manner of outward confidence, including a certain sexual freedom. Of course, this masks Meg's insecurities, caused largely by her uncertainty as to her future. Does she get married young and become the perfect military wife? Or does she figure out what goals and dreams she has of her own?
The headstrong, defiant Jo March is the headstrong, defiant Jo Spring. She is every bit as un-self-conscious as her predecessor. Her friendship with Laurie is a bit different here. Let's just say that there is a romance with Laurie, but Todd takes it in a different direction. I appreciated that, by the way, although I'm sure Little Women purists will find a reason to complain. Instead of doing that, how about we commend Anna Todd for staying true to the natures of her characters?
We all know what happens to Beth in Louisa May Alcott's story. As with Laurie, Todd takes the character in a different direction. I liked this, too. Hints are dropped, such that the revelation may not stun, but it's a worthy way to cast this character in modern times.
Unfortunately, Amy remains every bit as annoying as she did in Alcott's original. Again, however, this seems fitting. The youngest of four sisters, Amy watches Meg, Jo, and Beth, decides which one she wants to emulate, and does so, not bothering to think about whether that sister deserves such honors.
I really enjoyed this book. I like the spins Anna Todd took on Alcott's beloved family, and I liked some of the unexpected directions she took.