Monday, March 18, 2013

The Wilder Life: My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House on the Prairie by Wendy McClure

Remember how much you loved the Little House books when you were a kid? (You TV-show fans can shove off about now. It's not the same.) How you wanted to have Laura as a friend and lived the pioneer life vicariously through her adventures? I do, and McClure does too.

While indulging her Laura-obsession in ways such as purchasing a coffee grinder to make "The Long Winter" bread and travelling the Midwest visiting museum sites, McClure also does both personal soul searching and critical, academic analysis to figure out why the Little House meant so much to her (and many, many of us). Her insights on American Girl is enlightening, and her philosophy of "Laura World" made so, so much sense to me.

The book is both hilarious and thoughtful, and in the end you have to give major props to McClure's boyfriend Chris (to whom the book is dedicated) for his patience, sense of humor, and even enthusiasm about the whole project.

I cannot recommend this book too highly - especially if you were ever a child pioneer, living in a sod house through the illustrations of Garth Williams.

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