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The Land Remembers: A Story of a Farm and Its People Paperback – March 1, 2014


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Ben Logan is strikingly successful in recalling his own boyhood world, a lonely ridge farm in southwestern Wisconsin. . . . He reviews his growing-up years in the 1920s and 1930s less with nostalgia than with a naturalist’s eye for detail, wary of the distortions of memory and sentiment.”—Christian Science Monitor


“Reading Logan’s memoir is like a refreshing vacation from the demands and problems of modern life. A book to be cherished and remembered.”—Publishers Weekly


“This is a book that encourages the reader to listen to his own thoughts. . . . Some collective memory that says that this is all familiar, that we ourselves have experienced it.”—Time Magazine


“It’s not nostalgia for my own past [that] The Land Remembers makes me feel; it’s nostalgia for a world he makes me wish I’d known.”—New York Times

About the Author

Ben Logan traveled as a merchant seaman and worked many years as a novelist, producer and writer of films and television, and lecturer while living forty miles north of New York City. His roots remained in the southwestern driftless area of Wisconsin and he returned, in the mid-1980s, to his childhood farm where he has lived ever since.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 130 pages
  • Publisher: Itchy Cat Press; 1, With a new afterword edition (March 1, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0976145057
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976145059
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #878,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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See all 42 customer reviews
I grew up on a farm in Wisconsin and this book brought back many happy memories.
Kten Beth
It is particularly dear to me since I can feel, smell and breath the land he so believably relates as it can only be done by one who lived it.
HISTORYBUFF
It is so well written and I can't remember the last time I read a book that made me feel like I was there.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Linda Fletcher on January 26, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book is full of humor and spends wonderful time on how a farm is run, explaining the land, the chores, the wonder of living on a farm. Ben's antics with his brothers are delightful, and his account of his evenings with his family are memorable. I read this anytime I need a lift, and share its richness with anyone who will listen.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Mary & Bobby on January 16, 2000
Format: Paperback
One room school house, the changing of the seasons and the farm chores for each one...a memior of one man's boyhood experiences. I liked this book and my husband liked it even more than I did. He was born and raised in rural WI, picking rocks, milking, and going sledding with his brothers. This book is well written and reads like a time capsule...the people & chores on a family farm. I would have given it a perfect 5 stars, but there is too much about bees. Less bee watching and the author would have a classic here. Great that his story goes full circle. We learn what happens to the people we've read and cared about...which is always gratifying to us readers.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Nino Brown on July 30, 2009
Format: Paperback
Not long ago, the childhood of Ben Logan was a common experience across our nation. While the particulars differed, most Americans grew up in the countryside growing produce, raising animals, and experiencing the rhythms of the seasons in the place in which they lived. We knew the names of the plants that grew around us. We knew the nooks and crannies of a relatively large expanse of local landscape. And, perhaps most regrettably lost, we knew experientially how things in our portion of the world interacted.

Ben Logan spends little time ruing these losses. Instead, he simply describes the largely pre-mechanized days when he was a boy on a hilltop farm in West-Central Wisconsin. Organized around the seasons and their differing labors. In spring, the preparation of the fields - careful consideration given to needs of the soil. In summer, the long days are spent in long labor - bringing the quick growing hay and carefully tending the slower growing, but cash-providing corn. In fall, the main harvest occurs, both for the money crops and the crops that will sustain the farm through the winter. In winter, the cold and short days are spent maintaining the farm and planning for the next year.

Through it all, Logan depicts not only a lost lifestyle, but a family and a community that are probably not possible in our time. Certainly many care about that same issues that concerned the Logans, but, in many ways, our tangible connection to the issues of, for example, production, self-sufficiency and charity have become less tangible. Though Logan's nostalgia becomes clear through the book, there are few lectures, few explanations of the lessons to be learned. But somehow the fact that something important has been lost in our disconnection from the soil is quite clearly taught.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ty on August 26, 2006
Format: Paperback
Just ordered another gift copy of The Land Remembers. The author has a special ability to express the sacredness of the the Wisconsin homestead and poignancy of returning to family. A great read that sits at my bedside for those special quiet moments at the end of the day. If you enjoy this book you'll probably also enjoy Eleven Days in August, a memoir about a transplanted Wisconsite who returns each year from New York to join his family at their long-running Italian food concession at the Wisconsin State Fair.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By lanoitan on August 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is one of those books I will always remember. My children were young when I read it and I felt that it contained many lessons on how to be a good parent. And all in the context of very enjoyable reading. The story about learning to use the horse drawn cultivator shows how a parents help their child develop self-confidence, which is something I see so many people lacking. I can't say enough good things about this gem of a book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 17, 1998
Format: Paperback
After finishing this book, I added Gays Mill, WI to my list of places to visit. I could hardly put the book down once I got into it. The stories that Logan tells are thought provoking...some brought tears to my eyes while others filled me with laughter. All will warm your heart! Having grown up on a farm, I could relate to the events that happened as Logan was going up. Although we are years apart in age, there are some aspects of growing up on a farm that all can relate to.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By HISTORYBUFF on March 27, 2010
Format: Paperback
Yesterday, I re-read this book again. Talk about a walk through nostalgia for a time and place.

First reading was of the first edition when it came out. It is a book that sticks in my mind, especially since I, too, was born and raised on a subsistence farm in Wisconsin no different than the one on which Ben and his brothers grew up. Ours was a little further north in Wood County, a little colder but given to about the same kind of crops.

I talked to Ben yesterday on the phone; first time I ever did, and concluded I should have done it years ago.

This is a book that will never age.

It is particularly dear to me since I can feel, smell and breath the land he so believably relates as it can only be done by one who lived it.

We are both old fellers now. He is four years older. Sounds young on the phone though. We had a few laughs over what we can't do anymore, which is a heap. Nothing dead upstairs, however, in either case. (I am bragging in my own case.)

Ben has moved back to Wisconsin, donated the fabulous home place, which their hired man called "Seldom Seen" to the state for preservation, but he still plans to live there each summer. I hope we both make a hundred and become good friends.

My own book about being born and raised in Wisconsin, WHERE THE HEART WAS, undoubtedly owes a great deal of its inspiration to THE LAND REMEMBERS. But a reader will see I didn't pirate anything - or at least I don't think I did.

As a Big Stick in writing Ben was surpisingly approachable. Of course, it may have helped when I told him I'd been in the C.C.C. before WWII in a camp at Gays Mills, up in his neck of the woods. I loved every minute of it and it proved to me what a genius he is at presenting the fabulous Western Hill and Valley Region of Wisconsin to a T.

Read it. You won't regret it.
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