- Paperback: 432 pages
- Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (February 7, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062419692
- ISBN-13: 978-0062419699
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 67 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #307,235 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Selected Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder Paperback – February 7, 2017
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“A must for a new generation of readers of Wilder’s stories and for those who recall having enjoyed the “Little House” books as a child and wish to gain further insight into the life of the series’ author.” (Library Journal)
“Wilder fans will surely rejoice at this collection, which may also serve to introduce a new generation of readers to this important and much-loved American author.” (Booklist)
“[I]n her letters, just as in her books and in person, Laura Ingalls Wilder is effortlessly sunny good company...[R]eading these wonderfully human letters will make every reader hope for more.” (Christian Science Monitor)
From the Back Cover
Available for the first time and collected in one volume, the letters of one of America’s most beloved authors, The Selected Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder is a treasure trove that offers a new and unexpected understanding of her life and work. This wonderful book is a deeply personal portrait of the revered author, illuminating her thoughts, travels, philosophies, writing career, and dealings with family, friends, and fans as never before.
The Selected Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder compiles fascinating materials gathered from museums, archives, and personal collections. The letters span more than sixty years, and shed new light on Wilder’s day-to-day living. Through reflections on her beloved Little House books, letters with her legendary editor, Ursula Nordstrom, and her readers, we discover new facets to Wilder as a businesswoman and author. In deeply thoughtful correspondence, she shares her political opinions and reminisces of her frontier childhood. Also included are letters to her daughter, writer Rose Wilder Lane, who filled a silent role as editor and collaborator while the famous Little House books were being written.
Wilder biographer William Anderson collected and researched references throughout these letters, and the result is an invaluable historical collection, tracing Wilder’s life through the final days of covered wagon travel and her years of fame as the writer of the Little House books. The Selected Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder is a remarkable sequel to her beloved stories and a snapshot of twentieth-century living.
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Top customer reviews
All in all the book is a retread of material covered early and often.
Seriously. He admits it in the introduction
I don't mean to be so flip. There is some meat to this newest collection of Wilder letters, including some of the letters she and her daughter Rose Wilder Lane shared about the editing of the "Little House" books. Sadly, Rose burned most of the letters, especially all those from the 1940s, so we will never know the full editorial partnership she shared with her mother. There is a really good, impassioned letter of Laura's insisting that The Long Winter be confined to the Ingalls and Wilders with a few supporting characters rather than a full pallet of townspeople as Rose wanted in order to give full import of the isolation families faced during that hard winter of 1880-1881, which showed she did have the flair for storytelling that some literary scholars have denied her. But most of the letters are banal little responses to schoolchildren, with a few lovely gems.
The trouble is, I've read so many books about Wilder, including the recently published PIONEER GIRL, that I've already seen many of these "surprise bits" (like the fact that a young couple and their baby lived with the family during the long winter), so the revelations aren't. It's also sad to read Wilder's last letters with her longing for her late husband clear even in the few paragraphs, and it's also obvious that the sisters did not remain very close after Ma and Pa and Mary died.
I've been a Laura "junkie" since I first saw the television series and wanted to know "the real story," so I'm glad I picked this up, but if you have less of an attachment to her, I would invest in one of the biographies instead.