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Review of ‘Marmee & Louisa’

In one of the most disturbing scenes in Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, the saintly Marmee says to her daughter Jo, “I have been angry nearly every day of my life.” Eve LaPlante’s new biography of the “real” Marmee—Louisa’s mother, Abigail May Alcott—provides ample reason for her fictional counterpart’s daily rage.

LaPlante, herself a descendant…

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