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

Wendy McClure, Author
Wendy McClure, Riverhead, $25.95 (352p) ISBN 978-1-59448-780-4
Book - 978-1-4558-1345-2
Paperback - 336 pages - 978-1-59448-568-8
Open Ebook - 352 pages - 978-1-101-48653-5
Open Ebook - 352 pages - 978-1-101-48529-3
Hardcover - 430 pages - 978-1-61173-180-4
MP3 CD - 978-1-61106-942-6
MP3 CD - 978-1-61106-941-9
Compact Disc - 978-1-61106-940-2
Compact Disc - 978-1-61106-939-6
MP3 CD - 978-1-4558-5534-6
Compact Disc - 978-1-4558-5533-9
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Obsessed with Laura Ingalls Wilder and her Little House books about an 1880s pioneer family, children's book editor and memoirist McClure (I'm Not the New Me) attempts to recapture her childhood vision of "Laura World." Her wacky quest includes hand-grinding wheat for bread, buying an authentic churn, and traveling to sites where the Ingalls family attempted to wrest a living from the prairie. Discovering that butter she churned herself was "just butter," McClure admits she "felt like a genius and a complete idiot at the same time." Viewing a one-room dugout the Ingallses occupied that was "smaller than a freight elevator" prompted McClure to admit that "the actual past and the Little House world had different properties." McClure finally tells her boyfriend, "I'm home," after recognizing that her travels stemmed from her reaction to the recent death of her mother. Readers don't need to be Wilder fans to enjoy this funny and thoughtful guide to a romanticized version of the American expansion west. (Apr.)
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