Daily Archives for: December 27th, 2014

Moods by Louisa May Alcott (1864)

Moods by Louisa May Alcott was this beloved American author’s first novel (that is, the first that she published under her own name). It came out in 1864 — four years before her breakout Little Women. 

The novel unconventionally presents a “little woman” a true-hearted abolitionist spinster, and a fallen Cuban beauty, their lives intersecting in Alcott’s first major depiction of the “woman problem.”

Sylvia Yule, the heroine of Moods, is a passionate tomboy (as was the author herself) who yearns for adventure. The novel opens as she embarks on a river camping trip with her brother and his two friends, both of whom fall in love with her. These rival suitors, close friends, are modeled on Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau.

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