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MonkeyNotes-Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
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Chapter 27: Literary Lessons

Summary

Jo tries her hand at a "mildly sensational" story and submits it to a newspaper in hopes of winning the 100 dollar prize. Although her father frowns at the type of story, Jo uses the money to send Marmee and Beth to the seaside to help Beth gain her health back. Jo continues to write and her stories find a market. Meanwhile she submits her novel, and on the fourth try, it is accepted on the condition that she cut it down by one third and omit many of her favorite parts. She has the family read it in order to give her advice, but none of them are of the same opinion. Beth’s only concern is that it be published "soon."

Jo finally takes everyone’s advice and revises her story with an effort to please all. The book is published and Jo is paid 300 dollars, but the reviews are so mixed that she scarcely knows whether she has written a good book or not.


Notes

This chapter foreshadows Beth’s death. Jo’s concern over whether the book was really good or not is in contrast with the motivations of LMA herself. LMA stated several times that she wrote only for money.

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