Does Laurie truly love Amy in Little Women?

Quick answer:

It is for the reader to decide if Laurie really loves Amy. However, the narrative suggests that, though he does not stop loving Jo, his feelings for Amy develop and become stronger over time. Laurie feels very strong affection for all four of the March girls, and he finally comes to see that Amy is a better match for him than her strong-willed sister Jo.

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In Chapter 39 of Little Women, entitled "Lazy Laurence," there is a long dialogue between Laurie and Amy. Laurie is living a dissolute and aimless lifestyle in Europe, heartbroken after Jo rejected his proposal of marriage. Amy is distressed to see him throwing his life away in this manner and tries to rally his spirits. She is eventually successful in doing this, and Laurie falls in love with her.

It is for the reader to decide how convincing Laurie's love for Amy is. Few readers, however, will come to a simple conclusion on this point. Amy's temperament is better suited to Laurie's than her sister's is, a point which Jo herself is quick to appreciate. It seems likely that, in the long term, Laurie will be happier with Amy than he would have been with Jo, though this does not necessarily mean that he loves her more. It is also clear that Laurie, who was lonely when he came to Concord, loves all the sisters, and that his feelings are at least partly a collective affection for all four sisters. The author's intention seems to be to show that, while Laurie does not stop loving Jo, he really does love Amy, and that after she becomes his wife, his love for her continues to grow stronger.

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