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Publisher's Summary

In this novel authorized by the Little House estate, Sarah Miller vividly recreates the beauty, hardship, and joys of the frontier in a dazzling work of historical fiction, a captivating story that illuminates one courageous, resilient, and loving pioneer woman as never before - Caroline Ingalls, Ma in Laura Ingalls Wilder's beloved Little House books.

In the frigid days of February 1870, Caroline Ingalls and her family leave the familiar comforts of the Big Woods of Wisconsin and the warm bosom of her family for a new life in Kansas Indian Territory. Packing what they can carry in their wagon, Caroline, her husband, Charles, and their little girls, Mary and Laura, head west to settle in a beautiful, unpredictable land full of promise and peril.

The pioneer life is a hard one, especially for a pregnant woman with no friends or kin to turn to for comfort or help. The burden of work must be shouldered alone, sickness tended without the aid of doctors, and babies birthed without the accustomed hands of mothers or sisters. But Caroline's new world is also full of tender joys. In adapting to this strange new place and transforming a rough log house built by Charles' hands into a home, Caroline must draw on untapped wells of strength she does not know she possesses.

For more than 80 years, generations have been enchanted by the adventures of the American frontier's most famous child, Laura Ingalls Wilder, in the Little House books. Now that familiar story is retold in this captivating tale of family, fidelity, hardship, love, and survival that vividly reimagines our past.

©2017 Sarah Miller and Little House Heritage Trust (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

My childhood has been ruined

I was really looking forward to this book. When I read the other reviews my thought was “how could they say it’s awful? “Well, it is.

It begins just fine. I enjoyed hearing the minute details of how she lived in the 1870s. I enjoyed the stories of linseed oil on diapers, how she made water potable, And the other tiny little details of how life used to be. And then Charles spoke. It was horrible. Someone should have told this Narrator That Pa Wasn’t a gravelly voiced creep. Other male voices in this book could easily have been his. When I first read the review about the performance I thought it couldn’t be that bad. It was. And then it got worse

Not only did the voice ruin things for me, but the steamy sex scenes between the two were unnecessary and really grossed me out. I assume that the majority of people reading this book read them as children. The innocence is definitely lost in this book. I now have the image of Charles his tent stuck in my minds eye and it sickens me. I secretly enjoy steamy trash novels on vacation, but there is a time and a place for them ....and it isn’t on the Prairie.

34 of 36 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Obviously, I didn't like it

Where to start ? Others have reviewed this positively; I can not. I loved the Little House books, but this retelling of "Little House on the Prarie" was boring, dreary, and charmless. I hated Charles for his selfishness ( putting his wife through the hardship of a 700 mile trip by wagon while pregnant, no regard for the hardships and hazards to her or the two young children). Caroline's inner dialogue was endless and tedious. If you love the Little House books, this will change your view of them. And the narrator ! Ugh ! Her singing was abysmal and her voice for Charles, terrible. Re-read the Little House books but skip this.

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Arduous

A huge fan of the Laura Ingalls Wilder series of books along with the television show Little House on the Prairie I was anticipating being taken back to joyful entertainment. This book is like reading a poorly written, in the sense of entertainment, term paper. Spare yourself and don't be tempted. This is a dud.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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unnecessary and graphic sex scenes

The sex scenes were shocking and completely unnecessary! It ruined the whole book for me. Someone had told me to watch out for those parts, but I assumed they would be mild. I was wrong. They were graphic and distasteful. It made me lose my taste for the book entirely. I am so disappointed.
I can’t imagine how horrified Ma and Pa Ingalls would be to know the intimate parts of their marriage would be so graphically written about.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Annoying

As other reviewers mentioned, being in Caroline’s head and listening to the complaining gets old fast. Really didn’t enjoy this book much.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Not good...

I really didn't enjoy this book. It was a slog even even I kicked the playback speed up to 3.0. Additionally, the narrator's singing voice grated on my nerves. I will not be recommending this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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5 stars all around

I loved the rich story & the narration was stellar as well. As a repeat reader of all things Little House, I was intrigued by getting Ma's perspective and I was not disappointed as her perspective was fascinating and beautifully written.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A new point of view!

I grew up with the Little House Series and I will never forget the stories and life lessons that are gifted to the reader from Laura’s words. This is a retelling of The Little House on the Prarie from Caroline Ingalls’s point of view. I actually find it quite refreshing to hear it all from an adult perspective rather than the innocence of a child. Laura told us of the day to day monotony of travel and struggle as a child would see it. Endless days of open skies, camping outdoors, wanting to play or walk rather than ride, fear during a river crossing, missing a beloved pet who was believed drowned, and the excitement once a new home was found.

In Caroline’s point of view we see the melancholy of leaving friends and family, the trepidation of moving from an established home, the travails of pregnancy, the desire of wanting to protect two little ones on the open road, wanting to please her husband, inner dialogue, guilt, and thoughts that many a pioneer woman no doubt wrestled with, and the struggles of creating a home where once there was none. It is the same beloved stories that we are all familiar with. It is just from a different point of view.

The fact that Ms Miller received permission and approval from the Wilder estate gives reassurance that the novel she has written holds fast to the truth and spirit of the original work. I’d like to see more of the beloved stories retold from Ma’s point of view or even Pa’s! A new perspective is always a refreshing change! 10/10!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Very good read!

After reading the reviews I was somewhat apprehensive about reading this book. However, I enjoyed it very much. It is well written and interesting and I also liked the narrators performance. I’m a little house fan (books and show) and felt this book is good at giving insight into Caroline the person and really everyday life for women back then. I read so many reviews complaining about the one sex scene toward the end. It was not graphic or inappropriate. It was well written and I felt it was a natural part of the story between this loving husband and wife and therefore no big deal for adult readers. My single complaint would be her continued talk and descriptions of nursing, breast feeding, leaking, milk production, sore breasts etc.... It went on and on through several chapters and frankly was too much. Other than that minor annoyance, I loved the book.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Pulls you in

Great narration. Good story. Something about it left me unsettled, though. Can’t put my finger on it. Maybe it was how little Caroline actually said. I admire the fine details of mannerisms, language, and culture of the time/place.