One of Refinery29's Best Reads of September
In this novel authorized by the Little House Heritage Trust, 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.Read more...
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One of Refinery29's Best Reads of September
In this novel authorized by the Little House Heritage Trust, 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 eighty years, generations of readers 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.
- ISBN-13: 9780062685346
- ISBN-10: 0062685341
- Publisher: William Morrow & Company
- Publish Date: September 2017
- Page Count: 384
- Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.2 x 1.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
The lady of Little House
Readers who grew up cherishing the stories of Laura Ingalls Wilder will find much to savor in Caroline: Little House, Revisited, the third novel from Sarah Miller. Authorized by the Little House Heritage Trust and researched with letters, memoirs and other family records, Caroline recounts the events of the Little House on the Prairie series through the eyes of Caroline Ingalls, better known as “Ma.”
The story begins as the Ingalls family prepares to depart the “little house in the big woods” in Pepin, Wisconsin, to stake a claim in Kansas. Caroline, who has just discovered she is pregnant with a third child, is less enthusiastic than her husband, Charles, about leaving their extended family and taking their two small daughters—Mary, 5, and Laura, 3—into the region popularly known as “Indian Territory.” But she dutifully stitches and waxes the canvas wagon cover, packs her beloved china shepherdess into her trunk and completes the other myriad practical preparations for the long and difficult journey. When the family reaches their new home, more trials await that will test their bravery and skills.
One of the greatest charms of the Little House series—at least, for this reader—was the meticulous depiction of the chores, pleasures and challenges of everyday pioneer life (pig-bladder balloons!). Caroline follows in this tradition, as Miller explains everything from the intricacies of building a log house to the preparations for a new baby (Caroline carefully stitches a layer of waxed fabric to the inside of her bodice as a type of early brassiere). Life on the frontier had many dangers, and through Caroline’s eyes, the stakes of the story feel higher. In the original series, Laura’s fears could always be calmed by the right word from Ma or Pa. By contrast, Caroline knows that a lapse in judgment can have fatal consequences, and the reader feels this weight. Miller also introduces an adult element through the relationship between Caroline and Charles, which she depicts as a passionate and supportive partnership.
Full of lyrical descriptions of the wild beauty of the Kansas countryside, Caroline is a well-researched and thoughtful look at the inner life of one of America’s most famous frontier women.