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Book Review: JO & LAURIE by Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz

Jo & Laurie, by Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz, was a fresh retelling of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, with a bit of an obvious twist. I absolutely love Little Women, so this book definitely satisfied my need for more things Little Women.

In this story, Jo just published her first book, Little Women, and is ready to start the next book in the story of the March sisters. With unexpected struggle, Jo has to figure out what she wants to write, and give her characters love interests. She also has to deal with the death of her youngest sister, Beth March. This novel was a sweet story of growth, love, and finding happiness.

Overall, this book was really good. I may be a bit biased because I will read anything that makes Jo and Laurie end up together. Their relationship in this book made me so happy, I squealed way too much when they had cute scenes together. I loved how the authors took the original characters, and kept them somewhat similar, but added moments that made me love them even more.

The only downside to this book is I really didn’t feel as if I was brought to the 1800s. The language still seemed a bit improper, or contemporary, from the original Little Women. But, do you really read Jo and Laurie for the world they live in? Not really. The characters are the golden ticket to why Little Women and this book are great.

I absolutely loved the relationship between the March girls in this book. Amy, a character I didn’t really love in the original story, was way better in this book. She’s still somewhat of a brat, but I see real potential in her in this book, and I loved it! But the sisters have such an interesting dynamic and the authors nailed it spot on.

Jo’s relationship with Laurie, I have to say, was golden. I really love these two as characters. In the original book, I was always the one who wanted them to end up together. So this book was like my saving grace. Their banter is just so impeccable and the Stohl and de la Cruz do a great job developing these two as the major characters and each other’s love interest.

I honestly have nothing but really good things to say about this book. Obviously I wish Beth never died, but they have to keep authenticity from the first one. But that aside, I felt dragged right back in with the March sisters, seeing them be their normal, fun, goofy selfs. Which I absolutely cherished. Jo and Laurie was a spectacular novel, that basically fixed the one thing I hated about Little Women. It gave me the ending I needed and wanted.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Official summary:

Bestselling authors Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz bring us a romantic retelling of¬†Little Women¬†starring Jo March and her best friend, the boy next door, Theodore “Laurie” Laurence.

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!

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?

Jo & Laurie is out now and you can order your copy through any of the links below:

Bookshop | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

By Brooke

Hey, I'm Brooke. I love some trashy YA books, and lots and lots of coffee. Reading is my passion and my only love!