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The Complete Little Women Series: Little Women, Good Wives, Little Men, Jo's Boys (4 books in one)

Written by: Louisa May Alcott
Narrated by: Catherine O'Brien
Series: Little Women, Book 1-4
Length: 37 hrs and 23 mins
3.5 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Little Women is a novel by American author Louisa May Alcott (1832–1888).

The book was written and set in the Alcott family home, Orchard House, in Concord, Massachusetts. It was published in two volumes in 1868 and 1869. The novel follows the lives of four sisters – Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March – and is loosely based on the author's childhood experiences with her three sisters. The first volume, Little Women, was an immediate commercial and critical success, prompting the composition of the book's second volume, entitled Good Wives, which was also successful. Both books were first published as a single volume entitled Little Women in 1880. Alcott followed Little Women with two sequels, also featuring the March sisters: Little Men (1871) and Jo's Boys (1886).

Little Women was a fiction novel for girls that veered from the normal writings for children, especially girls, at the time. Little Women has three major themes:” domesticity, work, and true love. All of them are interdependent and each is necessary to the achievement of a heroine's individual identity.

Little Women itself “has been read as a romance or as a quest, or both. It has been read as a family drama that validates virtue over wealth.” Little Women has been read “as a means of escaping that life by women who knew its gender constraints only too well.” Alcott “combines many conventions of the sentimental novel with crucial ingredients of Romantic children's fiction, creating a new form of which Little Women is a unique model.” Elbert argued that within Little Women can be found the first vision of the “American Girl” and that her multiple aspects are embodied in the differing March sisters.

Little Men, or Life at Plumfield with Jo's Boys is a novel by American author Louisa May Alcott, first published in 1871. The novel reprises characters from Little Women and is considered by some the second book of an unofficial Little Women trilogy, which is completed with Alcott's 1886 novel Jo's Boys, and How They Turned Out: A Sequel to "Little Men". Little Men tells the story of Jo Bhaer and the children at Plumfield Estate School. The book was inspired by the death of Alcott's brother-in-law, which reveals itself in one of the last chapters, when a beloved character from Little Women passes away.

©2014 MonkeyBone Publications (P)2014 MonkeyBone Publications

What listeners say about The Complete Little Women Series: Little Women, Good Wives, Little Men, Jo's Boys (4 books in one)

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

good story, good performance, bad editing

The story is Fantastic. The performance is good, the problem is that no one went through and edited it. When the performer stopped to re-read line or something instead of cutting out the pause or the last your words they left them in in fact towards the end of the book you start hearing a clicker go off every time the speaker got tongue-tied. All this book really needed was a editing of the recorded performance to be perfect.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Accent doesn't suit the story

Started listening to this, and couldn't get past the first chapter. Nothing against the narrator, but I don't understand why they have someone with a British accent reading this?? Little Women is set during the Civil War in the United States, the accent is very distracting and takes away from one the story. It would be like listening to Jayne Austen with an American accent. blech.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

needs some work.

I struggled. and could not finish. the editing is annoying. huge breaks of silence and repeated sentences throughout. she reads so slowly that I ended up adjusting the speed and that helped a little however it wasn't enough for me to be able to make a better review.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

lovely story, awkward narration

the narrator keeps pausing awkwardly, sometimes for a whole 10 seconds, in the middle of passages. weird mic sounds every once in a while as well. very distracting.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Richard
  • 2014-07-03

poorly edited recording

What did you love best about The Complete Little Women Series: Little Women, Good Wives, Little Men, Jo's Boys (4 books in one)?

It was nice to have the whole series together. Each book independent would lose much. Indeed, the end of Little Women would frustrate much more isolated from the rest of the series.

What did you like best about this story?

This was full of moral and practical instruction for life and parenting.

What three words best describe Catherine O'Brien’s performance?

unedited

Any additional comments?

Editing Problems:
- averages 1 repeated sentence per chapter.
- Several points where the editing was forgotten as you can here a clicking and restart of a sentence.
- a few jumped sentences as a result of the editing

It wasn't terrible, but it was not smooth.

Also, O'Brien's character voices were difficult to differentiate quite often.

49 people found this helpful

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  • Pam
  • 2017-05-25

Disappointed

I used a credit to obtain this reading so I'm not technically out anything but, if I had spent the asking price on this book, I would have been livid. As it is, I'm seriously annoyed. This reading is rife with mistakes and editing errors. At least a couple of times per chapter, (and often many more,) a phrase will be edited without the removal of the original take so that you hear it repeated. Sometimes annoyed sounds from the reader are audible and/or equipment noises can be heard.
This sounds like someone recorded it in their living room with an old fashioned two track tape machine.
It is such poor quality that I wouldn't expect to pay more $.99 for it despite the fact that it includes four books but I recall that it was rather expensive. Please critically review this book yourselves and reassess it's value.

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Michelle
  • 2016-05-07

Very poor editing....

Unfortunately, there were quite a lot of technical errors and editing misses. Repeated sentences, hearing this annoying clicker when the narrator marked her mess up.

The narrator did a beautiful job of it! She's talented and her voice mellifluous. The only thing I wish I'd known before purchasing this was that she is British; I normally love an accented audible book! This, however, is a classic American story.... I don't want to sound negative about the narrator. She really has a splendid talent. It just made such a huge difference and I feel I can't overcome it. So next time I'll make sure to listen to the sample before buying.

Now, on to listen to it all again with an American accent =}

35 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2016-09-07

Terrible Recording

This needs to be re-edited. The narrator's throat-clearing and restarting of passages are still in there!!

There's also a very disconcerting clicking noise whenever she messes up and restarts, like a "hey, start here when you're cleaning it up" but nobody did!

I love the stories and so I persevered, but for what I pay for credits, I expect more quality listening than this.

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Bob
  • 2017-05-15

Unfinished

The story is great. The narrator does a good job. The issue I have is the poor editing. It's fine at the beginning, then you hear an occasional repeating of a sentence. At first I thought it was the player on my phone. By the end, the reading is full of mistakes, including the narrators clicks to alert the editor of a mistake.

Did nobody else listen to the file before publishing?

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Delana Marlene Elliott Morrison
  • 2019-10-16

Little Women series

Good story. Horrible narration. She kept having to clear her and turn the mike off.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • C. Morrow
  • 2015-05-11

Many recording mistakes

It sounds as if no one actually finished this recording. Every time the narrator made a mistake, you hear her stop the recorder and re-read the section. It's actually embarrassing. The stories themselves are very good. Very dear. The narrators voice is lovely and I would have liked the finished product, if I didn't have to hear her making mistakes and re-recording!!

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Libby Boghossian
  • 2019-08-17

Classic story, but lousy audio editing

This story is a wonderful classic, and the narrator does a good job with the reading and voices. HOWEVER, the audio editing is lousy. There are repeats, pauses, etc that should've been edited out before publishing the audiobook. Pretty distracting when it happens.

2 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • A LaPenta
  • 2018-07-22

Poor narration

This narration was not pleasing. There are many repeated lines, you hear the narrator clear her throat throughout, and there is an odd clicking noise. The narrator makes errors in the voices of the characters. I do not recommend this version of the stories.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Uncle Bud
  • 2014-05-05

My great-nieces LOVE listening to this

Where does The Complete Little Women Series: Little Women, Good Wives, Little Men, Jo's Boys (4 books in one) rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is truly a classic work for children and the fact that children love it today is a testament to Alcott.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Complete Little Women Series: Little Women, Good Wives, Little Men, Jo's Boys (4 books in one)?

My great-nieces prefer the 1st book over the other works whereas I enjoy "Little Men" and "Jo's Boys" better.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Client d'Amazon
  • 2020-01-18

Editing needed

The story though a classic was not something I enjoyed. What was problematic for me was the lack of audio editing. The reader often needed to repeat words, sentences, or paragraphs, but these duplicates or triplicates were left in the audio file.

1 person found this helpful