Shawl-Straps: A Second Series of Aunt Jo's Scrap-Bag
Date: January 2015
Duration: 4 hours 27 minutes
Unlike the other volumes in this series, which are books of childrens' stories, Shawl-Straps is a novel. It is the story of Amanda, Matilda, and Lavinia, three sisters who are travelling in Europe. The book is based on Louisa May Alcott's own travels with her sister. She states in the preface:
"There is a sort of fate about writing books of travel which it is impossible to escape. It is vain to declare that no inducement will bribe one to do it, that there is nothing new to tell, and that nobody wants to read the worn-out story: sooner or later the deed is done, and not till the book is safely shelved does peace descend upon the victim of this mysterious doom. The only way in which this affliction may be lightened to a long-suffering public is to make the work as cheerful and as short as possible. With this hope the undersigned bore has abstained from giving the dimensions of any church, the population of any city, or description of famous places, as far as in her lay; but confined herself to the personal haps and mishaps, adventures and experiences, of her wanderers." - Louisa M. Alcott, November 1872.