"No scholar of his generation has added more to our understanding of Louisa May Alcott than Daniel Shealy. In his brilliantly researched Little Women Abroad, he outdoes himself. Casual readers will be delighted to share in the humor and exuberance of two irrepressible sisters as they explore the wonders of western Europe side by side. Academicians will feast upon the rich archive he has placed before their eyes and will greatly benefit from his insightful commentary and meticulous annotations. Little Women Abroad warms the heart as it broadens the mind."
—John Matteson, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Eden's Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Father
By the time of the Alcott sisters’ sojourn, Louisa’s Little Women was already an international success, and her most recent work, An Old-Fashioned Girl, was selling briskly. Louisa was now a grand literary lioness on tour. She would compose Little Men while in Europe, and her European letters would form the basis of her travel book Shawl Straps. If Louisa’s letters reveal a writer’s eye, then May’s demonstrate an eye for color, detail, and composition. Although May had prior art training in Boston, she came into her own only during her studies with European masters. When at a loss for words, she took her drawing pen in hand.
These letters of two important American artists, one literary, the other visual, tell a vibrant story at the crossroads of European and American history and culture.
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