Finished reading Little Men today. The copy I read was once my mother's, part of the illustrated Junior Deluxe Edition collection of classics that she owned as a child. Far from being distracting, I thought the illustrations well-done and a nice addition to the simple story. This was a re-read for me, as I've read it several times during my childhood.
Little Men is the story of Jo (March) Bhaer and her husband, Fritz Bhaer, whom she met in Little Women, and their school for boys, Plumfield. The story doesn't have much plot, but just describes the daily life at the school, all the little ins and outs of life with a bunch of boys.
I liked the simplicity of the story, the way that life seemed so much less complicated back then. But it was preachy. MUCH more preachy than Little Women. And it was sometimes distracting, even causing me to roll my eyes on occasion.
Overall, I'd give it four and a half out of five Whatevers, with half a point off for the preachiness. However, if you liked Little Women, you might want to read this sequel. I do plan to read the third book in the trilogy, Jo's Boys, at some point in the near future.