This fascinating meme is hosted by The Introverted Reader and I'm very excited to participate in this! In this meme, you get to spotlight any literary character that you love.
Little Women is one of those books that I've read in every stage of my life since I was about 10 or 11. The reasons for liking it have seen some changes through the years, but there has been one constant : I have always loved its amazing heroine Josephine March. She was the first woman character about whom I remember saying 'Wow..I want to be like her'.
Perhaps it's got to do with her love for books, passion for writing and theatre, or her fiery, wild ways, but Jo is, to me, the most interesting of all the March sisters. She's not the most beautiful girl around, she has a horrid temper, she has to be with Aunt March, which is quite a pain for even the most patient person and in times of turmoil, Jo takes charge. I remember crying when she came home having cut her hair - her 'only beauty', to get some money for her family. That is one of the most powerful scenes from a book, etched in my memory and I was filled with awe and admiration for Jo. I also loved the tender relationship that the wild 'tomboy' Jo shared with her quiet sister Beth.
It is of course, pointless to talk about Jo March without talking about Laurie. I know so many people were disappointed that Laurie and Jo didn't get married. In fact, many readers sent letters to Louisa May Alcott to have them married. But she persisted on them remaining 'just friends'. I'm actually okay with it, because in a way, I see it as a lovely thing that Alcott showed that a man and woman can remain friends. This is what Jo predicts for herself:
"An old maid, that's what I'm to be. A literary spinster, with a pen for a spouse, a family of stories for children, and twenty years hence a morsel of fame, perhaps....'"
However, in the later books, Jo meets and marries Professor Friedrich Bhaer and becomes a famous writer. Jo is able to resist pressure of the society and does not get married very soon, but waits till she herself is sure that this is a right decision. She wants to go to college, she loves learning and I just could relate to her so much every time I reread the book. Little Women is a book that I heartily recommend for everyone and Jo March is a literary character who is hard to forget.
Winona Ryder plays Jo magnificently in the 1994 film version of Little Women and Christian Bale is a great Laurie. If you haven't watched the film yet, I strongly suggest that you do. It's one of those films you can watch together as a family and enjoy tremendously.