Friday, November 1, 2013

Eight Cousins - Louisa May Alcott


For today's Book Beginnings on Friday and Friday 56 post, I'm featuring Eight Cousins. I haven't read the book yet, but at 99¢ for my Kindle, it's a bargain!

Here's the Book Beginning:

Chapter 1 - Two Girls
      Rose sat all alone in the big best parlor, with her little handkerchief laid ready to catch the first tear, for she was thinking of her troubles, and a shower was expected. She had retired to this room as a good place in which to be miserable; for it was dark and still, full of ancient furniture, sombre curtains, and hung all around with portraits of solemn old gentlemen in wigs, severe-nosed ladies in top-heavy caps, and staring children in little bob-tailed coats or short-waisted frocks. 

Louisa May paints a good picture of the room, but those two sentences are really long!
 Would an editor let us write that way today? I don't think so.

Here's the Friday 56 excerpt from my Kindle:

      Presently, Phebe appeared with a card. Rose read it, made a grimace, then laughed and said,
     "I'll see Miss Blish," and immediately put on her company face, pulled out her locket, and settled her curls.

Anyone can participate in Book Beginnings and Friday 56. 

   Click here to connect to other Book Beginnings posts 
   (sponsored by Rose City Reader.)

   Find other Friday 56 bloggers here 
   (sponsored by Freda's Voice). 


  1. I enjoyed this book when I was young...I wonder how it would seem now? A few years ago, I reread some LMA books. I still enjoyed Little Women, but Little Men...not so much. I didn't get around to Eight Cousins. I'm curious how you'll enjoy it.

    Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

  2. THANKS for stopping by my blog earlier, and thanks for your preview of this book.

    Have a great day.

    Silver's Reviews
    My Book Beginnings

  3. A blast from the past, great choice!

    Happy Movember and happy weekend!

  4. Hi Sandra,

    I too, read the stock LMA books, as a chld, however 'Eight Cousins' certainly didn't feature on that list.

    I see that you made the same observations about LMA's writing style, as you did about my own featured author this week, Robert Bartram.

    I have to be the worst person in the world for composing long sentences and I love really descriptive writing, so for me, your first lines were absolutely perfect and set the scene so well.

    I hope that you enjoy the book, although for the princely sum of $.99, it isn't the end of the world if you don't.

    Have a good weekend,


    1. I guess long sentences must be one of my (many) pet peeves! I do like the description, especially of the portraits lining the walls.

  5. What a great pick. It is so easy to forget books that were not written recently. Thanks for visiting..

  6. Interesting beginning and excerpt! You're probably right that most editors would frown upon such long sentences today! lol Thanks for sharing and for stopping by my post earlier!

    Wendy @ Escape Into Fiction

  7. I remember this book! Loved it. As to the complex sentences, you are right that an editor would chop the heck of it. But my question is, should they?

    1. Even though I prefer shorter sentences, I agree that longer, flowing sentences are appropriate for some genres. Actually, after I get into a book with long sentences, it doesn't seem to bother me so much if the story is good.

  8. Both of these excerpts are intriguing. Thanks for the visit to my blog.

  9. I love classic authors like Louisa May Alcott. Enjoy! Thanks for visiting my blog.

  10. I love long, shaggy opening sentences like those. A book that starts like that makes me want to settle in for a long comfy read.

  11. I wonder what was on the card.

    Thanks for stopping by!


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