Friday, April 1, 2016

The Selected Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder by William Anderson

Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote children's books.  She also wrote lots of letters.  Some were to family, some were to friends, some were business, and some were for her fans.  She had a lot of readers who wrote to her.  Her personal style shows through the letters.  She was a kind gracious lady for the most part.  But she was willing to fight for a decent price on her books!

HarperCollins sent me an ARC of this book for review (thank you).  It has been published, so you can get a copy now.

My favorite part of the book is the early letters while she reminisces about her days as a child.  My own grandparents immigrated and their early days were not so very different from the tale of her parents.  They had to work the farm hard to stay alive but work it they did.

What I found odd was how similar Laura's struggles were to what is going on today.  She had to edit one story because she said there were no people there, just Indians.  It was pointed out that Indians were people, too.  She didn't mean to offend anyone but she should have said there no other white people when they arrived.

She and her daughter were upset about Franklin D Roosevelt's New Deal.  Politics were controversial in the early 1900's too.  I can imagine what she'd think of politics today!

You also learn a lot about publishing books.  She uses an agent and she and the publicist take turns nagging each other but she keeps writing books.

These letters talk about life and death, her daughter and her husband, and offer uplifting words to the students reading her books.  She had a large impact for a single woman and her daughter followed in her steps.

This was a good read about exceptional people who come to life as you read their letters.

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