Monday, February 07, 2005

For wee folks

I'm reviewing a theatrical production of Little Women, and just now I popped over to St. Vinnie's, the thrift store around the corner, to see if there was a copy of the Louisa May Alcott novel. There was, sort of, but I left empty handed: the only versions there were abridged, condensed, or otherwise transformed for young readers. These books make me shudder; why mess with a classic? I don't think Alcott's prose is that difficult, except for the very youngest children, who can read other things until they're ready.

My favorite version was this one, a movie tie-in edition apropos of the 1994 film with Winona Ryder. St. Vinnie's had several copies. The front reads, "Adapted by Laurie Lawlor from a screenplay by Robin Swicord based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott." Now that's a mouthful. Do you suppose there's a videogame based on the novelization of the film of the novel?

Elsewhere in the children's section, I paused over a suspiciously slim edition of Moby-Dick, but I couldn't bring myself to look at it. Is that really a children's book?

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