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Rose in Bloom (Puffin Classics) [Paperback]

Louisa May Alcott
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

30 Nov 1995 Puffin Classics
Six years before she wrote Little Women, and in financial straits, Louisa May Alcott entered "Pauline's Passion and Punishment, " a novelette, in a newspaper contest. Not only did it win the $100 prize, but, published anonymously, it marked the first of the series of "blood & thunder tales" that would provide her livelihood for years. For as she said, "They are easy to 'compoze' & are better paid than" The gruesome, passionate stories reveal a darker side of Alcott. Published anonymously or under the pseudonym of A. M. Barnard, they appeared in weeklies over a century ago. In their mastery of suspense and psychological drama, and in their embodiment of a startlingly intense - if oblique - feminism, they attest to the multifaceted genius of their creator. "Pauline's Passion and Punishment" features a woman who is scorned by her lover and left with her fury and her desire for revenge. The male hero of "The Mysterious Key" must unearth secrets hidden away in a family tomb if he is to realize true love. Mysterious pasts and all-too-present jealousies conflict for some surprising effects on the holiday mood in "The Abbot's Ghost." And "Behind a Mask" tells the chilling story of a woman thwarted by love, whose main motivation becomes her desire to dominate an entire family.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin Books; New edition edition (30 Nov 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140374515
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140374513
  • Product Dimensions: 20.1 x 12.6 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 695,458 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Louisa May Alcott was born in 1832 in Germantown, Pennsylvania, but grew up in Concord, Massachusetts. Educated by her father, the Transcendentalist thinker Bronson Alcott, she was influenced by the prominent men of his circle. Emerson, Hawthorne, Parker and Thoreau. The family was usually short of money, and she worked at various tasks from sewing to writing to help to support it. The Civil War broke out in 1861, and in 1862 she began to work as a volunteer army nurse in a Union Hospital. Out of this came her first book, Hospital Sketches (1863); she went on to write several Gothic romances and thrillers. With the publication of Little Women, her first full-length novel for girls, Alcott leapt from being an obscure, struggling New England writer to becoming the best-selling American author of the century. However, she suffered from ill health aggravated by early deprivation and overwork. Alcott died in Boston in 1888.

Product Description

About the Author

Louisa May Alcott (November 29, 1832 – March 6, 1888) was an American novelist best known as author of the novel Little Women and its sequels Little Men and Jo's Boys. Raised by her transcendentalist parents, Abigail May and Amos Bronson Alcott in New England, she grew up among many of the well-known intellectuals of the day such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau. Nevertheless, her family suffered severe financial difficulties and Alcott worked to help support the family from an early age. She began to receive critical success for her writing in the 1860s. Early in her career, she sometimes used the pen name A. M. Barnard. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't believe it was written over 130 years ago! 30 Aug 1999
By A Customer
The story of Rose and how she comes of age is certainly idealized, but don't we need more ideals these days? She is rich and rather sheltered, but she faces the same peer pressure, the same temptations with boys, the same problems with friends and romance. Even Charlie's struggle with drinking is as fresh and relevant today as it was then. She also promotes an independent, even feminist, attitude, but without losing sight of the importance of feminine talents and virtues. I didn't discover this book until I was in my 20s, even though I had been a Little Women fan since childhood, but since then I've read "Eight Cousins" and other Alcott classics, and I wouldn't be without them. My daughter is learning to read now, and I can't wait to introduce her to Rose!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Actually my favourite 31 Aug 2003
By A Customer
"Rose In Bloom" is definitely my favourite Alcott. Contrary to some opinions, I think it's better than its predecessor, "Eight Cousins". Rose is 18, having just returned from a round-the-world tour with Dr. Alec and Phebe. To her cousins, she declares her intention of going into philanthropy after three months in society.
She finds that "Prince" Charlie has a drinking problem, and has also fallen in love with her. Meanwhile, pressured to respond to his advances, she tries desperately to cure him of his habit.
On the other hand, Archie has fallen deeply in love with Phebe, and she with him. The majority of the Campbell family do not approve. (Rose, of course, supports them staunchly, as does Mac.)
Then, of course, Rose finds another of her cousins is in love with her, and she is not, to her distress, completely immune to him...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A worthy book at any age 16 July 1999
By A Customer
I love Louisa May Alcott, and I love this book. I have read every published piece of Alcott that I can find, and I am always awed by her literacy, fluency in storytelling, and purity of the characters portrayed in her writing. I love following Rose as she begins to grow up, and watching her struggle to maintain the high standards and principles that her wholesome upbringing has given her. While the grown-up world of Alcott is still pretty pure by today's standards, the essential elements are there: avarice, insincerity, and superficiality. This is a book I read and enjoyed when I was 10, and still love at 25. There are lessons to be learned about being true to oneself, and an illustration that life's ephemeral pleasures need not become lifetime distractions. If you don't give this to your child to read for all the reasons above, give it to him or her knowing that it may make them curious about some wonderful authors of the Enlightenment period - such as Emerson and Thoreau. When I was ten, I wanted to read Emerson's essays, like Heroism and Love, because Alcott introduced me to the literature in a way that piqued my curiousity. That in itself, is a wonderful reason to read this worthy book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Better than "Eight Cousins" 13 April 2009
I read "Eight Cousins" and "Rose In Bloom" back to back and can honestly say that though "Eight Cousins" is 4 stars, "Rose in Bloom" is a 5 star book within its genre. Well worth the read but must be read after the cousins or else will make no sense. I'm exploring more of Louisa May Alcott's books as they are a refreshing change from more modern books, lightweight but not meaningless!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as Eight Cousins but must be read! 9 Sep 2001
By A Customer
Yes no where near as good as the previous book but you have to read it to see what becomes of Rose, Charlie, Archie and Mac etc. Worth Reading!
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