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Monday, November 3, 2008

Little Women - More thoughts

Greetings and Happy Monday.

I just had to stop to jaunt a passage from Little Women. While I am enjoying this book tremendously, I do pause to consider the writing. ( in a good way of course) When I selected this book for my annual September read for my book club, I had no idea that it was Young Adult. Of course, after thinking about it and going into my memory banks from my childhood, I recall seeing Little Women and Little Men in the shelves of the library section that I frequented most.

The first part of Little Women "read" as young adult for me. And the book continues to be suitable for young adult readers. It is warm, vibrant and charming in the story and characters. I was, and still continue to be captured by the innocence of this book.

Regarding the following passage, I am interested if most think that a young adult in this day and age would assimilate this type of writing and whether or not young people in your own life would opt to read this book. I am not expecting anyone to get the gist of the context of the reading but was curious about the words and the length of the paragraph. What do you think?

" It was a pictorial sheet, and Jo examined the work of art nearest her, idly wondering what unfortuitous concatenation of circumstances needed the melodramatic illustration of an Indian in full war costume, tumbling over a precipice with a wolf at his throat, while two infuriated young gentlemen, with unnaturally small feet and big eyes, were stabbing each other close by, and a disheveled female was flying away in the background with her mouth wide open."

I am curious... what do you think? I am curious as to this book, back in the day did young adults have much more of an attention span? That is quite a sentence for a young adult. Was the book made a classic from the story, from adults that had a deep appreciation for the outstanding writing? Who read this book to initially promote it to such a fantastic classic? Young adults or Adults? While it makes no difference to me how it was promoted because I do recognize the classic element of the book and love it, I still wonder.

I dug deep into my furthest memories and I recall checking out the book in 7th grade or so, drawn to it's voluminous size. I remember attempting to read it and never getting very far into the story. I opted out and read something else.

Anyway.... I am enjoying it now. Now is my time to appreciate this unique and eloquent novel.


Mr. Nauton said...

whoa -- "concentanation"???? Maybe that's why I've never picked that one up...
Different times, different vocabularies, and a much different expectation of young adult reading material

Toni said...

Hi JK...
That was my thought. I had a friend in a book club recently pointed out the lack of other things to do back "in the day." No tv, no video games, cell phones, texting, ect., maybe young adults were able to cipher through more complex sentences and vocabulary out of their own need for entertainment/adventure.

Needless to say I am enjoying reading it and savoring the writing. I surely know now why I was not able to get too far into the story when I was in 7th grade. I can admit that it was over my ability at that time.

Thanks for the comment.