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Elise Hooper Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Other Alcott (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Learning to See (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Even though author Elise Hooper is a New Englander by heart and by birth, she lives in Seattle, Washington with her two daughters and husband. Here, she teaches literature and history. Whenever she gets the chance, she teaches writing courses, as well.

When she is not writing, she enjoys dance parties with her daughters, reading, or playing tennis. She has been accused of playing way too much tennis, but she feels there is no such thing.

Here is something not a lot of people know about Elise: she has played on women’s tennis teams that made it to the USTA National Championships two times. The first time, they lost in the finals, but were able to win the whole thing second time. She feels that tennis is a lot like writing, perseverance is key.

Growing up, she was a bona fide bookworm. Her love of reading, paired with her overly active imagination, made her believe that she was born in the wrong time period. Instead of living during the 1980s, she felt she was supposed to chase fauns throughout Narnia, travel across the prairie in a covered wagon, or exploring, in puffed sleeves, Prince Edward Island.

What she did instead is cross town in a station wagon so she could chase field hockey balls around. She also wore Tretorns to go exploring the mall. All while she dreamed about leading a much more storied existence some place like Tara, Thornfield Hall, or Manderley.

Her main characters are typically based on real women’s lives who are frequently overlooked in the history books.

One of Elise’s favorite things to do is research, and enjoys every second she spends learning about odd things. She enjoys being able to put her vivid imagination to work on productive things. Instead of just worrying about all the crazy scenarios she is concocting inside her own head.

Her first novel was published in the year 2017, and was titled “The Other Alcott”. Her work is from the historical genre.

Elise grew up close to the Alcott family museum, and she went to a drama camp there when she was a little girl. Initially, she tried writing about Louisa. She abandoned this idea, as there is a lot that is explored about her life. Elise refocused her story on the sister that drew on her walls, and she found that she wanted to know more about her. She was able to find many of the major events that make up her biography, but there was still a ton of blank space and a chance for Elise to imagine her emotional journey and write a story.

“The Other Alcott” is the first stand alone novel, which was released in the year 2017. This is the untold and fascinating story of May Alcott; the youngest sister of Louisa and an artist of her own. May Alcott (who is creative, stylish, and outgoing) grows up with a longing to experience the world outside of Concord, Massachusetts. Louisa, May’s sister, crafts stories, while May is a dedicated and talented artist, who takes lessons in Boston, turns down a marriage from a well-off suitor, and facing scrutiny for getting into what is very much so a man’s profession.

Life for the Alcott clan has never been easy, so as Louisa’s book “Little Women” is published, the success lessens the financial burdens they had faced for quite a few years. Everybody agrees that the novel is charming. However, May is hit to her very core by the portrayal of spoiled and selfish “Amy Marsh”. Could this really be what her beloved sister truly thinks of her?

May goes on a quest to find her true identity, both as a woman and as an artist. From London to Paris and Rome to Boston, this determined, brave, and talented woman makes an amazing life all her own. It makes her a lot more than simply “The Other Alcott”.

Elise Hooper’s writing is engaging and her voices are entirely authentic of the time, and she clearly did her research of the period to bring all of this to life. This is simply a fascinating debut novel, as it gives insight on May Alcott and the entire unconventional family the Alcott family was. This is a totally engrossing read that makes you want to read it all again once you hit the end of the book, just to experience everything once more.

“Learning to See” is the second stand alone novel, which was released in the year 2019. The year is 1918. A fearless woman at the age of 22 gets to bohemian San Francisco coming from the Northeast. She brings with her the determination to make her way as an independent woman. She renames herself Dorothea Lange and is quickly the celebrated owner of the most stylish and prestigious portrait studio in the city. She is also Maynard Dixon’s wife, he is a volatile yet talented painter.

The economy in America collapses by the early 1930s, and her marriage begins to founder. Dorothea is left to support her young sons by herself. She is determined to expose the horrific conditions the nation’s poor are living in, and takes to the road, armed with her camera. The images she creates reform, inspire, and define the era. The nation enters World War II, Dorothea decides to confront one more injustice. Thousands of innocent Japanese Americans’ incarceration.

During a time when the women were supposed to make sure the home fires were kept burning, Dorothea, who created of the most iconic photographs of the twentieth century, dares to be unique. Her decisions came at a steep price, however.

The book is beautifully written, filled with historical details and engaging environments and characters. The entire thing is as vivid and real as the photographs that Dorothea took during her time. Even though this is a work of fiction, you can still get a feel for both Dorothea Lange and her contemporaries as well as for the period as a whole. It is great to learn more about Dorothea, and through this excellent book, it makes an enjoyable thing.

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