Saturday, May 30, 2015

Little Women Read-Along: Learning to Forget (Ch. 41)

In which we abruptly leave the mourning March household and return to Europe, where Laurie gets over Jo faster than he'd intended or expected.  I like that he writes Jo and asks her one last time if she could marry him, and then accepts her negative answer as final.  

And without further ado, he falls in love with Amy instead.  I guess I don't mind, since "Amy felt that no one could comfort and sustain her so well as Laurie, and Laurie decided that Amy was the only woman in the world who could fill Jo's place and make him happy (p. 382).  I'm a leeeeetle put off by him still thinking of that as "Jo's place," but okay, whatever.  Not every match in fiction makes me happy, and I'm okay with that :-)  

Favorite Lines:

Jo wouldn't be put into the opera at any price (p. 376).

While waiting for an answer he did nothing, but he did it energetically, for he was in a fever of impatience (p. 378).

Possible Discussion Questions:

Laurie's proposal to Amy is unconventional and brief.  Do you think that suits them, or is it just Alcott refusing to give us what we expect?

IMPORTANT QUESTION!!!  Does anyone want to write a character sketch of Jo March?  I would need it fairly soon (sooner the better, really), but if no one volunteers to write one within the next few days, I'll probably write one myself later this week.

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT!!!  So that the end-of-read-along giveaway doesn't overlap my participation in the Great Book Giveaway Bonanza, I'm going to start the read-along giveaway this coming Friday, and will have it end on the 12th, after we've finished the read-along.  Got it?  Good!

10 comments:

  1. I think the proposal was short and sweet, and in a very romantic setting. ;) I liked it.

    ~Lydia~ <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lydia, I liked that it was simple and kind of original, and the boat did make it quite romantic :-)

      Delete
  2. I think all of this being packed into one chapter can make you overlook, if you don't stop to think about it, that it all takes a while. Laurie goes to Vienna, tries to write a requiem and an opera; he goes to Paris; he goes to Germany; he and Amy correspond for some time; and travel and letters took a bit longer back then—so it's not as if he makes a sudden switch from Jo to Amy in a couple of weeks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good point, Elisabeth! You're exactly right -- it reads quickly, so it feels fast, but it does take quite a bit of time.

      Delete
  3. Oh, I loved the proposal...very brief, but also very sweet... Just right for them.
    I think the proposal ties in with their whole relationship - it was never true love from the start, it just evolved until both silently admitted to themselves they couldn't live the rest of their lives without the other...

    Aww! This read-along is almost over? I can't believe it! What fun it has been reading other people's thoughts and views and I am going to miss chatting about this sweet story of the March sisters:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kelly-Anne, it does suit them, doesn't it?

      And yup, it's been a fun journey, but I think we'll be done by June 10th. Happily, the posts will be here for the foreseeable future, so we can always revisit them :-)

      Delete
  4. Yes, I agree that it suits them, because Amy was never really a sentimental kind of girl. She was very affectionate, but definitely reserved.

    Also, I personally happen to like brief-but-eloquent proposals where the people say all they need to say in a few short lines ;) Don't know why, but I do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jessica, that's a good point about Amy not being sentimental!

      I prefer brief proposals to loquacious ones myself. Mr. Darcy's first proposal, for instance, that kind of goes on and on...

      Delete
  5. I definitely think the proposal suits them. The proposal happened so naturally and it was sweet and simple, so I really loved it. :) I think the proposal was also perfect because it reflected the type of relationship Amy and Laurie had, which wasn't very normal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ekaterina, that so true! A not-exactly-typical love story needs a not-exactly-typical proposal.

      Delete

What do you think?

(Rudeness and vulgar language will not be tolerated.)