Read Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott Online


When Rose Campbell, a shy orphan, arrives at "The Aunt Hill" to live with her six aunts and seven boisterous male cousins, she is quite overwhelmed. How could such a delicate young lady, used to the quiet hallways of a girls' boarding school, exist in such a spirited home? It is the arrival of Uncle Alec that changes everything. Much to the horror of her aunts, Rose's forwWhen Rose Campbell, a shy orphan, arrives at "The Aunt Hill" to live with her six aunts and seven boisterous male cousins, she is quite overwhelmed. How could such a delicate young lady, used to the quiet hallways of a girls' boarding school, exist in such a spirited home? It is the arrival of Uncle Alec that changes everything. Much to the horror of her aunts, Rose's forward-thinking uncle insists that the child get out of the parlor and into the sunshine. And with a little courage and lots of adventures with her mischievous but loving cousins, Rose begins to bloom.Written by the beloved author of Little Women, Eight Cousins is a masterpiece of children's literature. This endearing novel offers readers of all ages an inspiring story about growing up, making friends, and facing life with strength and kindness....

Title : Eight Cousins
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780486455594
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 224 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Eight Cousins Reviews

  • Saleh MoonWalker
    2019-04-06 20:04

    Onvan : Eight Cousins (Eight Cousins, #1) - Nevisande : Louisa May Alcott - ISBN : 486455599 - ISBN13 : 9780486455594 - Dar 224 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 1874

  • Julie
    2019-04-21 16:02

    This went from delightful to tedious in thirty pages. It's amazing to me that Jane Austen, who wrote some one hundred years before Alcott, could feel so incredibly modern and this novel so insufferably outdated.If you like regular lines such as "Oh, you little dear!" and scenes of the older man holding the chin of the thirteen-year-old girl and tenderly kissing her rose-bud lips and telling her to mind him and all of her dreams shall come true (did I mention it is her uncle--her dear, dear uncle?), then by all means, rip into this "classic," and, while you're at it, read Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, too!I actually couldn't even make it to the end, but I think she must marry the uncle. I honestly could not suffer through one more scene of the almost 14-year-old cuddling in dear uncle's lap.If someone misled you and you thought this was a brilliant classic. . . go read Anne of Green Gables or Jane Austen or anything Bronte instead.

  • June Geiger
    2019-04-13 16:59

    I had SUCH a crush on Uncle Alec, who rides in on his white charger bearing oatmeal and imported silk sashes and SAVES young Rose from well-meaning overbearing aunts and migraines and addictions--some heavy stuff even by today's kiddie lit standards. (If you haven't read it and think I'm kidding, I'm not.) And when I wasn't fantasizing about Uncle A, I imagined myself with my own gaggle of guy cousins to pal around with--one or two tapping at my heartstrings, of course. Five stars? How about eight :)

  • Catherine
    2019-04-11 22:03

    The latest book in my Louisa May Alcott kick...and I found it generally charming. I love the idea of "throwing out the window" the general practices at the time (wearing tight corsets and belts, taking strong coffees and cordials to improve health, teaching girls to act like 'ladies' instead of allowing them fresh air and exercise) and enjoyed watching young Rose become a picture of health and happiness. I also loved the idea that her uncle taught her to be a self-reliant woman (hence the emphasis on housekeeping, cooking, etc.) instead of relying on servants and maids. Some of the ideas were still a bit old-fashioned, but I didn't find it offensive and would definitely encourage my children (daughters and sons) to read this book.

  • Sarah
    2019-03-23 23:47

    Age Appropriate For: All AgesBest for Ages: 10-18Some of my favorite memories of my early teen years were the hours that I spent reading Little Women with my sisters. We read the whole book together over a few months, sitting outside in the woods, each with a different project. Alcott always makes me think of those happy times, and makes me feel nostalgic.My younger sisters have read many more Alcott books then I have, and I got to hear all about their favorites. The book I heard them gush the most about was Eight Cousins, so I decided to read it this year. I am so glad I did.While I think that this book can be enjoyed by all ages, it was written for the young. It is a wonderful adventure of a little girl and her cousins, they type of story I would have devoured as a child. There is no-romance, and there are good lessons and interesting characters.Rose was such an endearing character, and I loved how she saw her faults and worked hard to fight against them. I also loved how her Uncle worked so hard to do what was best for her, even if it was against the fashion.The setting, though it was written in the backdrop of the 1800’s, is not very hard to imagine it taking place in our own time. Alcott had a timeless way of writing and a way of capturing the troubles of the old and young alike in a way that makes it never feel old.I highly recommend this to girls who love old books, non-romantic stories, and books that feel real.

  • Jessica
    2019-03-29 21:00

    I love Little Women, I really do. Though I realize in retrospect that a lot of it is sort of . . . preaching the philosophies of the May/March parents. Which is fine, because wanting girls to be strong and self-sufficient is a wonderful thing.But if you thought Marmee was a little too full of wholesome advice, this is NOT the book for you. The entire book revolves around orphaned Rose, and how her Uncle Alec, a free-thinking doctor, rehabilitates her. The virtues of fresh air, exercise, wholesome food, and hard work are touted in every chapter. The evils of corsets, high fashion, earrings, coffee, and other frivolities are scorned! There is an entire chapter devoted to outfitting Rose for the winter, where one fashionable outfit is roundly excoriated, and cast aside in favor of a simple yet well cut frock over warm long underwear! I mean, it's cute and all, and Alcott has a simple, fun style of writing, and I can see that her ideas would have been revolutionary back in the day. But in this day and age, it's like, They really thought she was gonna die because she went ice skating with her male cousins?!The thing that really kept me from enjoying the book though, was the racism. There are a pair of Chinese men in the book who are not only described repeatedly as being beady-eyed and yellow-skinned, and having the "most queer customs and clothing" but are also heartily laughed at by the children for their accents and customs, and go out of their way to give the children gifts and amuse them with their foreign ways. YEEESH.Also, the classist way that Phebe the maid is treated horrified and fascinated me. Rose "adopts" her, which everyone thinks is the most noble and wonderful thing Rose or anyone has ever done. Yet as far as I can tell, this amounts to totally forgetting about her for months at a time, then remembering, feeling bad, being consoled by her uncle, and then giving her a present. Phebe wants to be educated, and Rose remembers this when she comes upon her trying to teach herself, pats her on the head (though Phebe is older) and sets up a play school because she is bored. There is no indication that this school is in session for more than a week. But everyone applauds Rose, and ignores Phebe, as long as she doesn't shirk her duties. Phebe is treated like a very small and backward child, rarely asked what she wants, and Rose is constantly feted for caring about her maid and giving her presents that mostly consist of books and clothes she doesn't want.In short, I can see why this one never became the classic that Little Women did.

  • Kristen
    2019-04-07 16:45

    If you've read any Louisa May Alcott, the general ideas and characters will be familiar. The characters are all very high-minded and very concerned with morality, building character, proper behavior, etc. Being written nearly 150 years ago, some of the ideas on health, class and race relations, and gender roles are very antiquated, and can even seem a bit bigoted. But you have to remember the time in which it was written. The way they describe a Chinese man is particularly interesting.The basic plot follows Rose, a girl of means, who is orphaned and goes to live on the "Aunt-Hill" with her many aunts, her seven boy cousins, and her devoted guardian, Uncle Alec. We see her grow, change and learn over the course of an experimental year, in which Uncle Alec has complete charge over her upbringing, with no interference from the aunts. At the end of the year, they are to decide whether it has been a success, and whether Rose should stay with Uncle Alec, or move in with one of her aunts. Does Rose have a good year? Does she stay with Uncle Alec? I'll never tell - you have to read it.Though older books can be a bit difficult to read, due to the different language and writing styles of more than a century ago, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and plan to read the sequel "A Rose in Bloom" as well.

  • Tweety
    2019-03-31 17:47

    Just as wonderful the third time round! :D

  • Kathryn
    2019-03-26 19:07

    Oh my goodness this was such a good book and I already have the next one in the series, so I am all set. Sweet, loving, charming, delightful.

  • Julia Reed
    2019-04-10 19:41

    Every so often I get the urge to travel down memory lane and read some of the books that I loved as a child. I went through a phase where I polished off all of the Anne of Green Gables series on my Kindle, and another where I did the Little House books, so I guess it was inevitable that when I next needed to scratch that "childhood period fiction" itch, I'd reach for one of my dearly beloved favorites, Louisa May Alcott. It's interesting to think that many of the authors of beloved children's fiction written in or about the 19th century lived themselves very depressing lives(Look up Lucy Maud Montgomery if you don't believe me)that were at odds with the general happiness of the characters they wrote about. LMA is no exception, except in that her characters often reflect some of the own poverty and hardship that she faced in her daily life. They always do so with goodwill and Christian courage, to the point where it gets a little tiresome, but the bits of good writing and humanity that peek through the preaching are delicious enough for me to keep coming back for more. Eight Cousins is one of the lesser read works of LMA, but a favorite of mine. It departs from the usual "poor children maintain good attitudes in the face of struggle" theme by dealing with wealthy children, who maintain good attitudes in the face of struggle. But I don't read it so much for the children as I do for the adults. I think one of the lesser appreciated things about LMA is that while her children might be a little too wholesome for modern audiences to stomach, there's very little wrong with the way she writes adult characters. Consider that the best parts of Little Women are the second half, when the girls are grown, and you'll see what I mean. Eight Cousins features some wonderful grown up characters, and plenty of squeaky clean kids to help me get my childhood fix. Even better I think is "Rose in Bloom" the Eight Cousins sequel where Rose and the boys finally grow up and are therefore permitted enough faults and foibles to make their more saccharine parts go down much easier.

  • Alisha
    2019-04-20 15:40

    When I was in my early teens, there was a trifecta of authors that I devoured: Jane Austen, L.M. Montgomery, and Louisa May Alcott. I even made an informational web page about them on Angelfire... those were the days...Anyway, revisiting a book like Eight Cousins reminds me exactly how I was influenced by these characters. A lot of my world view was shaped by this innocent wholesomeness, exemplified by Rose, the main character. Her ladylike presence automatically inspired people around her (namely, men) to be their best selves! So much gentility and respect! This impressed me mightily! I subconsciously stored this fascinating social education away, only to find that's not quite how it goes...But while it's a bit out of place in the modern age, and occasionally some would say naive, I'm glad it was part of my youth and wouldn't trade it for anything! In this book, orphaned Rose comes to live with her guardian uncle, and her neighbors are 7 boy cousins and a bunch of other corresponding aunts and uncles!She arrives a tired, droopy little thing who survives on strong coffee, is proud of her tightly cinched little waist, and is about as uneducated as most girls of her class... but Uncle Alec changes all that. By the end of the book she's well on her way to being a truly healthy young girl with high spirits and noble ambitions, who can also make her 7 cousins toe the line.There are some delightful episodes, such as the "freedom suit" her uncle orders for her (the opposite of a corset). And, pay particular attention to the development of Mac, her bookworm cousin... because there's more to come in the next book!!

  • Mela
    2019-04-08 23:40

    Let's face it, Louisa May Alcott wrote a beautiful books for young adult/children. It is a fact. Period. ;-)During reading I was thinking all the time that this book should be obligatory for children and also for parents (guardians). There are so many people who read guides for parents and so on. I think they should start with such books like this one. It is so full of wisdom that you can't miss it. And almost all of them are true today too. There weren't computer games or Internet in those times but both then and now children are essentially the same (despite what television or civilisation tell).Fathers and mothers are too absorbed in business and housekeeping to study their children, and cherish that sweet and natural confidence which is a child’s surest safeguard, and a parent’s subtlest power. So the young hearts hide trouble or temptation till the harm is done, and mutual regret comes too late. Happy the boys and girls who tell all things freely to father or mother, sure of pity, help, and pardon; and thrice happy the parents who, out of their own experience, and by their own virtues, can teach and uplift the souls for which they are responsibleAlso, I have had fun reading about plays they have. Of course, my next book will be a sequel: Rose in Bloom.

  • 2019-03-30 23:38

    This book and its sequel "Rose in Bloom" are my favorite books from childhood - even more so than Ms. Alcott's "Little Women." Rose it a wonderful role model, despite her flaws - and who wouldn't want an Uncle Alec? Her kindness and generosity are virtues that we could see more of in this world.

  • Mom
    2019-04-15 19:05

    I enjoyed this book so much. Good lessons on doing the right thing and being a good person. Fast and easy read.

  • Tracy
    2019-04-03 19:03

    I read this book more than once when I was between the ages of 8 and 12. My recent re-read came about when I realized I could download it for free onto my Kindle. If I were reading it for the first time as an adult, I would probably give it 3 stars, because the moral lessons can be a bit heavy-handed, and the word "pretty" is used 75 times, and the description of the Chinese character Fun See tiptoes too close to being racist, but my nostalgia for the book boosted it to 4 stars. I was amused to see that the chapter when they are in the mountains and play charades is just as boring to me now as it was when I was a kid! The book has some modern ideas for being written in the 1870s, but there are other ideas that are alarmingly sexist (reminding you that despite Uncle Alec's forward-thinking it was indeed written in the 1870s!). It is my favorite Alcott book by far, though. As a young reader, I was so completely smitten with the concept of a lonely orphaned girl moving into her Aunts' Boston mansion with seven boy cousins right there in the neighborhood to tease her and love her and admire her and vex her. Oh, how I longed for a clan of boy cousins just like the Campbells! Each boy has a distinct personality, delightful in their own ways, although the 12 year old twin boys, Geordie and Will, don't get much page time. Comments on the Kindle edition: lots of missing punctuation, which made some paragraphs a bit muddled. The character named Annabel Bliss in my print editions here is named Adriana Blish, and Debby the cook is Debby only in the first few chapters, when suddenly her name becomes Dolly for the rest of the story. Oh, and ancient old white-haired Aunt Peace, whom I always pictured as being at least 80 years old, is only 50!!!!!! Yikes!

  • Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
    2019-04-20 17:00

    I first ran across this book over forty years ago, when I was nine or ten. It was and still is one of my "magic carpets"--those books that take you to another time, another place, another situation. I know I'm not the only preadolescent girl who dreamed of a wise, adventuresome Uncle Alec who would turn up and take me away--take me out of school (loved learning, hated school), teach me to swim and ride and boat, shower me with presents, give me lovely comfortable clothes and my own room. As we read we discover that Rose is actually quite the heiress--she lives up on "the hill"--and that hill might just possibly be Beacon, though the name of the town is never given. Due to the illustrations in my book in those days, I thought Rose had black hair, but for once I can forgive a protagonist for being rich, pretty, sweet, AND blonde. My only similarity with Rose is that I too once got near-frostbite on my hands walking home from school in a blizzard with no gloves on a day that started out like spring, as blizzard days often do in the Midwest. My idiot mother, instead of rubbing my hands with snow to jump-start the circulation decided hot water would be better. I too cried out with pain, like Rose--repeatedly--though I didn't develop an interesting and life-threatening case of pneumonia to be nursed through. The boy-cousins who all worship the ground she walks on spoiled me for the guys I went to school with; the Campbell boys are all cute, nice, polite, rich AND intelligent!This is lovely escapist stuff, as much for its author as for its readership--we now know that Alcott's girlhood entailed not-very-warm clothes, "cold water, scant food, and enforced cheerfulness at meals." I always loved the chapter where they visit the Chinese ship best of all. Perhaps that was the seed that led to my fascination with things Asian in general.

  • Debbie Phillips
    2019-04-14 17:06

    Loved it.This was the first time I have read this book, as far as I know.It was sweet.It was wonderful.It was full of growing girls and boys.The main character, Rose, such a sweet girl, grows and endures many trials and even helps her 7 male cousins to grow and mature as well.She is so giving.Just lovely.The Aunts... hysterical, endearing, lovely, funny, strange, Great.And Uncle Alec is the best. Anyone would love him to be their guardian. a quote and a wake up call for all us parents/guardians, this is one thing that homeschooling gives my husband and I a better chance at doing successfully... though we all have our moments and even days of not doing and being all we should for and to our children... "Fathers and mothers are too absorbed in business and housekeeping to study their children, and cherish that sweet and natural confidence which is a child's surest safeguard, and a parent's subtlest power. So the young hearts hide trouble or temptation till the harm is done, and mutual regret comes too late. Happy the boys and girls who tell all things freely to father or mother, sure of pity, help, and pardon; and thrice happy the parents who, out of their own experience, and by their own virtues, can teach and uplift the souls for which they are responsible." pg 224 My children talk to my husband and I. They, mostly, respect our opinions on things and come to us with troubles, large and small. It is a privilege and a great responsibility. I can't wait to read Rose in Bloom.I hope I like it as well as I did this one.

  • AngieA
    2019-03-30 23:04

    "Eight Cousins" by Lousia May Alcott is one of my all time favorite books and I try to read it every couple years. The story of an orphaned teen girl(Rose Campbell) who comes to live with her maiden aunts and bachelor uncle is overwhelmed by the presence of 7 male cousins who all live within walking distance. We follow them for a year as bachelor Uncle Alec raises Rose in a healthy, happy environment. Rose "adopts" the housemaid, Phoebe, who can sing like a lark. Rose also exerts her influence on her cousins. Alcott uses the characters in this story to gently put forth the educational and social agenda of her father and other social reformers of her time. Uncle Alec's chief complaint consisted of children growning up too fast and not being allowed to be children. Something we could learn from today. I think this book ranks classic status because of it's timeless values and interesting characters. Each of the eight cousins has a distinct personality and reacts in interesting ways. Each of the boys' mothers also is distinct and their parenting styles are taken to task. We all know moms like each of these aunts and recognize the children that spring from them. I always read "Eight Cousins and "Rose in Bloom" one after the other.

  • Airiz C
    2019-04-07 17:00

    Another delightful read from Louisa May Alcott—quite a breather from all the heavy readings I’m having lately! It’s not as good as her Little Women or Little Men, but it’s equally charming. Basically it’s about the sickly little girl Rose Campbell who must live with her numerous aunts in Aunt Hill and seven boy cousins after her father died. There’s nothing much to say when it comes to the plot, it’s just a series of slices-of-life zeroing in on one bud of a girl that was slowly growing into a fully-bloomed rose. There are also vignettes that focus on family relationships, particularly emphasizing that family members can sometimes argue with one another at some point yet maintain a sense of respect for everybody. The characters seem a tad too familiar to me, as I think they were created in the same mold as those in Little Women (in case of Rose) and Little Men (in case of the boy cousins). But I don’t have any gripes about that; I’m only aiming for a light read, and this I achieved after I read this.Short and Sweet, Eight Cousins is a book I’ll recommend to those who love Alcott’s previous books.

  • Laura Waxman
    2019-03-26 17:57

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Such a sweet story

  • Ruth
    2019-04-10 18:52

    I think I just read some brainwashing pamphlet trying to convince everyone that cigars and earrings are evil, all fashion is vanity, and that women were put on the earth to make everything 'comfortable',being too stupid to better themselves with any sort of an education besides the culinary arts and sewing. How did this happen? Did Louisa write this in her old age when she turned senile? Or maybe it was her first novel as a budding author? Either way, this book was a great disappointment--I have some recollection of the Little Women series being a tad preachy, but had high expectations for Eight Cousins. Sadly, my high esteem for Alcott has fallen. I still have fond memories of taking part in the lives of the March family and the lives of the young women as they grow up, but let's just say that the series was a one hit wonder.

  • Yair Ben-Zvi
    2019-03-24 19:54

    While admittedly a very dated text (I was honestly amazed at the racial and gender mores that Alcott described so lucidly) there is still much to appreciate. However, and in the interest of full disclosure, I probably would not have read this on my own (it's part of a Trade Literature class I'm currently a part of)but I'm glad that I did; the prose is fluid and even fecund in its descriptive powers, and while it could certainly be construed as saccharine or treacle, I feel that unlike a lot of pretender optimist texts of today, there's a sense of authenticity and earnestness that prevents this novel from sinking under its own sugary weight.

  • Lisa Vegan
    2019-04-03 17:37

    This is probably my second favorite Louisa May Alcott book (after Little Women.) At least it was when I was a kid. I remember envying Rose all those boy cousins; it seemed as though it would be so much fun to have so many built in boy playmates. And it’s yet another orphan story – I do have an “orphans” shelf on goodreads as I love books about orphans. I don’t remember this as a depressing or somber tale at all though.On another note: I pulled out my copy of the book, and I’m very excited as I must still have my mother’s copy: have one published the year (1927) she was twelve; I read this for the first time when I was a few years younger than that.

  • Melissa
    2019-04-05 16:07

    I liked Little Women, but I have always liked this and its sequel so much better. Uncle Alec is a feminist at heart, surrounded by well-meaning relatives wanting to put their oar in (but still offering some wisdom and useful teachings in their own way). If Mary from the Secret Garden had grown up in a loving family from the start, I think she would have turned out very much like Rose. Having had lots of boy cousins myself, I love reading their antics (although mine never doted on me half as much as they dote on her).

  • Jessica
    2019-03-31 00:05

    Louisa May Alcott's stories always have a way of making you feel warm&fuzzy. I love the manner of the time, though it is always amusing to see how women are "silly" and considered so much dumber than the men!

  • Mikayla
    2019-04-01 18:48

    What a charming book! Just like little woman! I can not wait to read the sequel!

  • Duane
    2019-04-02 16:51

    This is my favorite Alcott book outside of the March Family books. This is the 1st Rose book and is followed by Rose in Bloom. Not as good as Little Women but very good in its own right.

  • Michael Bafford
    2019-04-08 00:01

    This is the first book in the short series that ends with Rose in Bloom. I read the second book first, not wisely. I understood even while reading it that the first book was probably better, and I had no clue as to the characters and eccentricities of the different aunts and cousins.This book is better, if not as much so as I had hoped. And I did get more insight into the family. Roses Uncle Alec is the hero, taking Rose under his wing on the death of her parents and bringing her up according to his own methods which include plenty of exercise, eating good wholesome food, spending time outdoors, doing lessons which he devises and taking responsibility for her actions. Not much new there, it would seem, but the aunts generally have different ideas about what is good for a fragile young girl. After a few adventures and lessons - as much from life as from books, Rose turns out OK.One thing which surprised me was that aunt Clara, who was shallow and conceited in the second book was here an insightful mother doing her best to raise her son in the absence of his father. To now avail, alas!What I found to be most interesting was the everyday life of children in New England in the mid nineteenth century, the chores and trials, games and fun. All of families are well-to-do; but class-barriers, which do exist as we find more particularly in book two, are not nearly as rigid as, for example in Trollope's and Dickens's England. Hail the Republic!

  • Amy Kannel
    2019-04-01 00:05

    The characters were so lovable even if they did seem completely was charming and wholesome and enjoyable. I'm pretty sure it would have worked well as a read-aloud. I liked it enough to want to pick up Rose in Bloom.

  • Elena Mills
    2019-03-23 23:44

    Like I said, this book is ageless. I will never stop loving it. It is very traditional, having been published in 1875 but it is hard not to love the characters or Louisa May Alcott's marvelous writing style. This book is definitely a favorite!