Jo and Laurie

I’ve always secretly shipped Jo and Laurie, and this book delivered.

READ IF YOU…

  • Love Little Women
  • Root for a Jo-Laurie ship
  • Like character-driven books
  • Like retellings

Title: Jo & Laurie| Author: Margaret Stohl, Melissa de la CruzRating: 3.5/5

The retelling I didn’t know I needed right now, but it was oh-so-good. If you ever wanted a version of Little Women where Jo, and not Amy, ends up with Laurie, this is the book for you.

I did feel some things were a bit “off,” but it wasn’t too bad and didn’t distract much from the story. What I did like was there were two storylines converging:

  • Jo’s writing of Little Women and working with her publisher, who frustrates her at every turn
  • Jo’s life with her sisters, Laurie, and traveling to New York, going to a ball, and meeting with the wealthy

I loved the unique storylines who converged, with Jo’s writing of a sequel to Little Women blending with her “real life.” It gave a glimpse of Jo as a “real author,” as she was as Jo in Little Women, but it also gave an additional storyline as Jo, the “person.”

1869, Concord, Massachusetts: After the publication of her first novel, Jo March is shocked to discover her book of scribbles has become a bestseller, and her publisher and fans demand a sequel. While pressured into coming up with a story, she goes to New York with her dear friend Laurie for a week of inspiration—museums, operas, and even a once-in-a-lifetime reading by Charles Dickens himself!

It seems a bunch of people have issues with the book being a Jo-Laurie fanfic, and I can see why, but I don’t think it diminished the story at all. It was the love story I always wanted, where Jo and Laurie admit their love to each other and marry. It was all my 10-year-old self would have wanted, and frankly, all my older self wants in a Little Women retelling.

But Laurie has romance on his mind, and despite her growing feelings, Jo’s desire to remain independent leads her to turn down his heartfelt marriage proposal and sends the poor boy off to college heartbroken. When Laurie returns to Concord with a sophisticated new girlfriend, will Jo finally communicate her true heart’s desire or lose the love of her life forever?

A great read that I stumbled across, and a beautiful Little Women retelling. Well worth the read for any Jo March (and Laurie Laurence) fan. The book reminded me of how much I loved Little Women growing up, and how loving Laurie was as a friend. It tugged at all my schoolgirl heartstrings in all the right ways.

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