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Friday, September 7, 2018

Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder -- Mommy Time Review

Disclosure: Macmillan Publishing sent me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

I grew up reading Laura Ingalls Wilder books and watching Little House on the Prairie. Did you? I loved it. In fact I found the reruns on Hallmark Channel at one point and introduced Hazel to the show. Then we started reading the books together. Now I have seen many places the idea of how politically incorrect the books are, but to me they were wholesome and good and bring back memories of a simpler time (in my life). Well, now you can find out more about the Ingalls family then ever with Caroline Fraser's Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder

Caroline Fraser tells you how it was. She has researched the Ingalls family and the time period thoroughly and explains things. There is a look at where both Charles Ingalls and Caroline Lake Quiner Ingalls came from and their lives and how the families came to move around and why each move was probably made. She also delves into the climate of the country and was happening during their lives. She also points out some of Laura's own biases especially when it came to faults of her family. 

As Laura Ingalls Wilder filled my head (and the head of many) with a dream of a happy time to be alive, Fraser knocks it down and tells how life really was for many families including the Ingalls on the prairie. She also explains how some of the events that happened in Wilder's books and life have been explained with a look at history and science. Things such as the great prairie fire she saw from a distance may have been the Great Chicago Fire. 

Now I have read social issues brought up by the inaccuracy of history in Wilder's books, and how it is told in the view of white man. It does not share how the Ingalls were trespassing on Native American's land when they first moved from the Big Woods. However Fraser explains it all. She explains what the pioneers were hearing was going to happen and what was happening. She tells the story without prejudice. It is eye opening to read this book having grown up with Wilder's books and the television show. I truly enjoyed this book and hope you will check it out.