The third work in Louisa May Alcott’s quartet of Little Women books, Little Men picks up the narrative after the end of Good Wives and follows Jo’s progress in life. After her marriage to Professor Friedrich Bhaer, Jo uses the money from her inheritance from Aunt March to set up a school at Plumfield. Their latest arrival is Nat Blake, a timid orphan boy whose life so far has been spent playing the violin to make money on the streets. Nat joins the ten other children at the school – a gang made up of neglected children, orphans and also Meg’s twin boy and girl. The touching friendship and camaraderie between the group is expertly described. The peaceful equilibrium of the school is troubled though when Nat introduces Dan to the mix; the latter then leads the boys into experimenting with drinking, smoking, fighting and playing cards. Moving and poignant, Little Men is far from saccharine and emotions run high throughout, particularly with the death of a prominent character towards the end of the tale.