Rose in Bloom (Puffin Classics)

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9780140374513: Rose in Bloom (Puffin Classics)

Six years before she wrote Little Women, and in financial straits, Louisa May Alcott entered "Pauline's Passion and Punishment, " a novelette, in a newspaper contest. Not only did it win the $100 prize, but, published anonymously, it marked the first of the series of "blood & thunder tales" that would provide her livelihood for years. For as she said, "They are easy to 'compoze' & are better paid than moral...works." The gruesome, passionate stories reveal a darker side of Alcott. Published anonymously or under the pseudonym of A. M. Barnard, they appeared in weeklies over a century ago. In their mastery of suspense and psychological drama, and in their embodiment of a startlingly intense - if oblique - feminism, they attest to the multifaceted genius of their creator. "Pauline's Passion and Punishment" features a woman who is scorned by her lover and left with her fury and her desire for revenge. The male hero of "The Mysterious Key" must unearth secrets hidden away in a family tomb if he is to realize true love. Mysterious pasts and all-too-present jealousies conflict for some surprising effects on the holiday mood in "The Abbot's Ghost." And "Behind a Mask" tells the chilling story of a woman thwarted by love, whose main motivation becomes her desire to dominate an entire family.

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About the Author:

Louisa May Alcott (November 29, 1832 – March 6, 1888) was an American novelist best known as author of the novel Little Women and its sequels Little Men and Jo's Boys. Raised by her transcendentalist parents, Abigail May and Amos Bronson Alcott in New England, she grew up among many of the well-known intellectuals of the day such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau. Nevertheless, her family suffered severe financial difficulties and Alcott worked to help support the family from an early age. She began to receive critical success for her writing in the 1860s. Early in her career, she sometimes used the pen name A. M. Barnard.

About the Author:

Louisa May Alcott was both an abolitionist and a feminist. She is best known for Little Women (1868), a semiautobiographical account of her childhood years with her sisters in Concord, Massachusetts. Alcott, unlike Jo, never married: ''... because I have fallen in love with so many pretty girls and never once the least bit with any man.'' She was an advocate of women's suffrage and was the first woman to register to vote in Concord, Massachusetts.

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