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UnavailableThe Revelation of Louisa May (Sneak Preview)
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The Revelation of Louisa May (Sneak Preview)

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The Revelation of Louisa May (Sneak Preview)

ratings:
3/5 (25 ratings)
Length:
35 pages
26 minutes
Released:
Mar 10, 2015
ISBN:
9781452149363
Format:
Book

Description

Want a sneak peek? Download this free sample of The Revelation of Louisa May by Michaela MacColl. Louisa May Alcott can hardly believe her ears—her mother is leaving for the summer to earn money for the family and her father won't do anything to stop her. How is Louisa to find the time to write her stories if she has to add taking care of her father and sister to her list of chores? And why can't she escape the boredom of her small town to have an adventure of her own? Little does Louisa know just how interesting her small world is about to become. Before long she is juggling her stubborn father, a fugitive slave who is seeking safety along the Underground Railroad, and possibly even love where she least expects it. Add the mysterious murder of a slave catcher to the mix, and Louisa has her hands full. Michaela MacColl has once again intertwined the facts of a beloved author's real life with a suspenseful fictional tale that will not only have readers on the edges of their seats but also, like Louisa, debating right versus wrong, family versus independence, and duty versus love.

A Junior Library Guild selection
Released:
Mar 10, 2015
ISBN:
9781452149363
Format:
Book

About the author



Reviews

What people think about The Revelation of Louisa May (Sneak Preview)

3.1
25 ratings / 14 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (3/5)
    I received this book from Early Reviewers. I enjoyed the book and was interested to learn about the Alcott family's involvement in the Underground Railroad. Louisa's playing sleuth was a good twist. Some of the dialogue felt stilted and some of the characters were not well developed. I'm not sure who this novel is targeted to. It seem far too mature for Little Women readers.
  • (3/5)
    I have mixed feelings about this book. I have read Little Women and enjoyed it immensely so I liked that this was based on the Alcott family and many of the characters are actual people or based on people from Louisa's life. I am not sure that this book will hold the attention of young readers. (Unless, perhaps, they have read Little Women). I am thrilled that the novel covers the underground railroad and the fact the Alcott's actually aided in this. I enjoyed Louisa's character and thought she was well written. I also enjoyed Bronson, her father. Emerson, Thoreau, and Walden's Pond are also a great addition to the story. I was not aware of their part in Louisa's actual life. As for the other characters, there just was not a lot there. When I read the synopsis for this book on Early Reviewers I was excited to get it and thought I would use it in my annual book talk. Now, since reading it I am torn. While the actual history of the Alcott's and their life is interesting, I am not sure the story will hold the readers attention.
  • (5/5)
    Being a huge fan of Louisa May Alcott and Little Women, The Revelation of Louisa May was so much fun to read. MacColl did a great job shaping truth into fun fiction. I particularly love when books carry on a story based on a classic. This was a quick and simple read but thoroughly enjoyable.
  • (5/5)
    I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Part truth with a heaping of fiction, the author spins a tale of the Alcott family and their friends, Waldo Emerson and Henry Thoreau. There is a lot of Jo March in Louisa, a 15 year old who is wise beyond her years. When a slave catcher is murdered, Louisa feels she must solve the murder to clear her father's name. I had a hard time putting the book down, especially near the end. I would love to see a sequel and I am looking forward to reading more books by this author. Her characters jump off the page and gives the reader the opportunity to be a part of the story. I feel as if I know the Alcott family, Mr. Emerson and Mr. Thoreau personally.
  • (2/5)
    Little Women is a childhood favorite, so I like to read books about Louisa May Alcott. I really enjoyed The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott, so when I saw this book come up in the Early Reviewers list, I thought it was right up my alley. Unfortunately, nothing in that description warned me that this is a YA novel.I've read and enjoyed several YA novels, so it wasn't just that this was a YA re-imagining of Louisa May Alcott's life. I just didn't find the story compelling or even that well-written. The plot was shallow and the characters one-dimensional. In the story, Louisa is 15 years old, and taking over the running of the household in her mother's absence. To complicate matters, a slave has just arrived at their house as a stop on the Underground Railroad, so it's up to Louisa to make sure he stays safe until it's time to move on. Throw in a half-hearted love interest (of course), and a "mystery" to solve.I found Louisa to be a little bratty, and acting way beyond her years. The plot was full of contrived events, and convenient happenings. While this was a quick read, I constantly found my mind wandering, as the plot could not hold my interest during the couple hours it took to read this.This might be a fine book for tween to teen YA readers (except for the allusions to adultery on the part of Ralph Waldo Emerson's wife), but I found it entirely bland, and cannot recommend it.
  • (4/5)
    I loved this book. I thought that overall it was well written and I felt like the book allowed me to slip into the Alcott's lives for a few hours. It takes place over a few weeks in the life of Louisa May Alcott. Here she's just 15 years old but the would later grow up to be the writer of classic "Little Women." The story starts when her mother goes off to earn money for the family as her father, Bronson, refuses to "work for anyone." Louisa is put in charge of running the household for the summer which includes taking on her mother's role in harboring an escaped slave, George, on the Underground Railroad and thwarting the slave catcher, Finch, who comes to Concord to find him. What I liked about it was that Louisa acted of the time period and didn't act as if she knows she's going to be famous someday. She's also not perfect by any means. She's a bit judgmental, has issues with her father and at times appears as if she's trying to make those around her feel sorry for her. Still, she's easy to root for and I loved that there's a murder mystery and several love stories thrown in for good measure.It's easy to learn facts about people like Henry David Thoreau, Emerson and the Alcotts but it's another for an author to skillfully turn them into people and not just remnants of the past.I highly recommend this for YA, mystery and Alcott fans.
  • (4/5)
    I received a free copy of this book from LibraryThing in exchange for an honest review. I was happy to review this book as it is one I have been looking forward to reading since I heard about it. I loved Little Women when I was growing up, and knew Alcott included some bits from her own life in her novels. I was hoping this book would show a different angle on her life, and was relieved when it did, as I did not want this book to compete with Little Women. I thought it was an interesting way to tell young readers about the life of Louisa May Alcott. Although parts of the book are fiction, there is a fair bit that is from the Alcott's life. I particularly liked that the story included the Underground Railroad, her difficult relationship with her father, and the family's relationships with Transcendentalists like Emerson and Thoreau. I did not like the murder mystery portion of the book as much. This is definitely a book written for a young adult audience. While adults might still enjoy it, I think that readers should be clear about the target audience. It was an easy to read book with history, mystery, and a bit of romance. It is a great way to learn more about a well loved author. It was a pleasant and quick read.If you like Louisa May Alcott's books or young adult books I recommend reading this book.
  • (5/5)
    Louisa is still a budding teen author working on The Inheritance. The times are very tough for the Alcott family with Bronson not working other than trying to publish a few articles. Anna is working and currently not living at home. Louisa’s mother (Marmee) accepts a job running a hotel which is in Waterford, 150 miles away from their home in Concord, MA. She takes eight-year-old May with her so that the responsibility that will fall to Louisa is a little lighter. She will only have her father and Beth, who is still rather sickly. Then, they get a ‘package’. ‘Package’ is code in the Underground Railroad for a fugitive slave. This man, George Freedman, needs to wait and be hidden by the Alcotts until a few more ‘packages’ arrive – his family.Marmee divulges a few secrets to Louisa now that she will be filling her footsteps while she is away. For one thing, she tells her about the money that neighbor Ralph Waldo Emerson leaves within their bookcase when he visits. He doesn’t outwardly support the Underground Railroad but does his best to support the Alcotts financially while they harbor runaway slaves. For another thing, Louisa had no idea that Marmee even knew Pryor, owner of the tavern. He is an Underground Railroad ‘Conductor’ and works to move the ‘packages’ along on their arduous path to freedom. Marmee introduces Louisa to him before she leaves. The arrival of a slave catcher makes hiding George even more complicated and stressful.I have to admit that I’ve not read Little Women, but from what I know about it, this author seems to have made a magnificent bridge to the continuance of the family. Per the author’s note, Louisa began writing as a teen; The Inheritance was her first unpublished novel. Per Amazon, the novel is recommended for ages 12 – 18 (Grade Level: 7 – 12) and I would agree. This is not just literary fiction. There is a nice added mystery as someone targets the slave catcher and kills him. Is it George? He certainly had the most to lose. Each chapter began with a short quote from Little Women, which was a nice addition. Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
  • (3/5)
    The idea of a book based on Louisa was interesting and all, but I felt like reading this book was such a chore at times. I admired her character, although the writing while good just didn't hold my interest that well.
  • (3/5)
    This was a lovely, quick read that I received via LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program. (I'm still a book behind in this free program, making my way through the biography of Nelson Rockefeller, but it's pretty dense, so it'll probably take me a while...) I initially requested The Revelation of Louisa May because I'm fascinated by this particular point in time and space, when so many of the great literary and philosophical thinkers were in one place: Emerson, Thoreau, Alcott, Hawthorne. There are a couple of instances like this throughout history, and it always makes me profoundly jealous. And also curious about what people in the future might say about the thinkers of my generation, and their interactions.I digress.In this book, we get a snapshot of Louisa May Alcott's life when she is a teenager in Concord. Louisa's father, Bronson, refuses to work for money, so Louisa's mother ("Marmee") has just announced that she is going to work for a hotel that is 150 miles away in order to help financially support the family. This leaves Louisa alone to care for her father, her younger sister Beth, and herself. Even bigger than that, Marmee is leaving Louisa to care for the runaway slaves who move through their home as a stop on the Underground Railroad. A lot of responsibility for a sixteen year old. The story spans only a few days, but we see Louisa's view of the philosophical giants around her shift, her family threatened, a slave hunter menace to the community.I generally enjoy what one might call "slice of life" narratives, that don't necessarily have particular suspense or purpose, but merely give you insight into a particular person's life. I would say that's what this book is, but it didn't quite grab me as I was hoping that it would. There are some great historical references; for example, all of the background, with Louisa's mother going to work for the family, and her father's personality, and the Underground Railroad connection. All of those snippets are true pieces of Alcott's life.Perhaps it was the fabricated murder mystery—the completely fictional aspect—that turned me off.Regardless, it was a quick and mostly entertaining read.
  • (5/5)
    This was the second book I have read by this author, and I am loving her historical fiction pieces on the lives of classic authors. (The first I read was Always Emily). This one is about Louisa May Alcott, and you can see in her the spunk of Jo March. There's also characters that remind me of the Beth, Amy, and Laurie characters in Little Women. I also didn't know that the Alcotts were contemporaries and friends of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. I liked the way the author melded bits of truth and history with the fiction of a murder mystery. This was a fun, quick read: one I'd encourage my girls to read, especially since we've read Little Women together. Would I recommend this to fellow book lovers? Absolutely!Would I recommend this to my teen daughter? Yes.
  • (4/5)
    It was a pleasant quick read. I was able to read almost the whole book while waiting for an urgent care appointment, while I liked learning more about the relationships between real historic figures, with a good dose of fiction, it was not memorable.
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed this book. As someone who works in a school library I can appreciate how easy it was to become engaged in the story and to also have many points of interest within it for further research. I like strong female protagonists, and I think that Louisa May fit the bill. There is room here, I think, for further character and plot development. I would certainly read more if it was forthcoming from this author about Louisa May, and her family.There is one thing however that I did find a little misleading. The book cover and title seem to be more appropriate for one of those corset-busting throbbing-member period romances, rather than a young adult adventure with some intrigue and a bit of romance.
  • (2/5)
    The story of Louisa May Alcott seems to be of interest to more than one novelist. This, however, is not a particularly compelling version. The story of a very self-centered Bronson Alcott and the heroism of his daughter (and wife) is told without much nuance. The book is a fast read, though, and the writing is decent.