In her vivid, energetic account of the life of Louisa May Alcott, PBS and HBO television documentarian Harriet Reisen portrays a writer as worthy of interest in her own right as her most famous character, Jo March. Tracing her passion for the author to a marathon reading of Alcott's eight children's novels during a rainy spell one childhood summer, Reisen addresses all aspects of Alcott's life, from the effect of her father's self-indulgent utopian schemes, and her family's chronic economic difficulties and uprootings, to her experience as a nurse in the Civil War.
"Reisen's lifelong fascination with Little Women and the woman who wrote it has produced an absorbing narrative, in many ways the best ever, of Alcott's own life.... The utterly compelling force of Alcott's personality has never been better described. I found the book compulsively readable; I couldn't put it down."—Robert Richardson