5 Retellings of Little Women

Retellings of Little Women

Little Witches: Magic in Concord by Leigh Dragoon

In this historical fantasy, the March sisters are growing up in Civil War Concord–but they are also witches. Then Mr. Laurence and his grandson more in next door, and they just happen to be witch finders! A graphic novel retelling aimed at middle grade readers.

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Jo: A Graphic Novel by Kathleen Gros

In this contemporary retelling, Jo is a thirteen-year-old who anonymously runs a blog about her family and starts to discover more about herself as she develops feelings for the girl editor of her school newspaper, Freddie Baer.

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More to the Story by Hena Khan

More to the Story

Few retellings have come close to capturing the spirit of the Little Women like Hena Khan’s More to the Story. While it can be tempting to try to deliver the exact same plot line as Alcott, just updated with modern references, Khan goes beyond this to create an original work that is clearly inspired by Little Women, but does not try to be Little Women. And that is its magic. More to the Story emphasizes family relationships, friendship, and self-discovery to create a work that pays homage to Alcott with its depiction of modern girlhood, while still delivering its own compelling narrative.

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Littler Women: A Modern Retelling by Laura Schaefer

Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March receive a modern makeover in this retelling of Louisa May Alcott’s classic. They attend school dances, go to sleepovers, and have jobs babysitting. As they grow up, they hope to make their father, on active duty overseas as part of the National Guard, proud upon his return.

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Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy by Rey Terciero and Bre Indigo

Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy is a Little Women updated for a modern audience.  This means not only setting the story in modern-day New York City and featuring the Marches as a blended family, but also espousing contemporary values.  Where Louisa May Alcott’s original novel may be said to have promoted virtues such as humility, hard work, and cheerfulness, Rey Terciero’s re-imagining promotes values of inclusion, diversity, and feminism.  In many ways, this feels like the Little Women many readers have wanted all along. A graphic novel.

12 thoughts on “5 Retellings of Little Women

  1. Nancy says:

    I adored the original so I have mixed feelings about modern adaptations. How can you improve on the classic LMA version, yet nowadays it may be too dated for a modern audience.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mphtheatregirl says:

    Retellings make me so nervous to even attempt to read one. For a retelling to work, I want it to feel original while still having aspects of the original.

    What I loved about Spinning Silver is how original it felt= in basically everything. The characters, the world, and the story. A retelling of Rumplstlskin, which didn’t feel like the original story at all- I was able to see aspects of the original story in the book.

    Like

  3. booksandmate says:

    Great post, all of these sound amazing (especially the graphic novels). To add to this pile, the other day I saw the cover reveal for So Many Beginnings: A Little Women Remix by Bethany C. Morrow, it looks great

    Like

  4. Samantha D. says:

    Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy and More to the Story were both phenomenal. I’m going to be fair here and say that I have not actually read the original Little Women, but after reading those two adaptions, I craved more retellings of the story.

    Like

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