Item description for Laura: The Life of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Donald Zochert...
Overview Draws on documented records and Mrs. Wilder's unpublished memoirs to picture the people, places, and events that informed her ninety years and inspired her well-beloved Little House books
Courage, Adventure, Steadfast Love
From a little house set deep in the Big Woods of Wisconsin, across Indian territory and into the Dakotas, Laura's family moved westward right along the frontier.
Their true-life saga, beloved by countless millions of TV viewers and readers of the bestselling Little House books, is one of spirit and devotion in the face of bitter-cold winters, wilderness trails, and heartbreaking personal tragedy.
Here, for the first time, and drawing on her own unpublished memoirs is the endlessly fascinating full account of Laura's life -- from her earliest years through her enduring marriage to Almanzo Wilder, the "farmer boy" of her stories.
Citations And Professional Reviews Laura: The Life of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Donald Zochert has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Wilson Senior High Core Col - 01/01/2011 page 759
Wilson Senior High Core Col - 01/01/1992 page 553
Wilson Senior High Core Col - 01/01/1997 page 519
Wilson Senior High Core Col - 01/01/2002 page 488
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 6.89" Width: 4.24" Height: 0.75" Weight: 0.3 lbs.
Release Date Dec 1, 1994
ISBN 0380016362 ISBN13 9780380016365
Reviews - What do customers think about Laura: The Life of Laura Ingalls Wilder?
Fascinating biography May 11, 2007
I have always been a fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder's books ~~ the books are so entrenched in my childhood memories that I cannot remember my childhood without her books in hand. When I saw this biography in a bookstore not too long ago, I just had to have it. I also just finished re-reading the entire series over the holidays, so everything was still fresh in my mind when I started reading this biography.
First off, this is a very poorly written book ~~ the writing style has made me cringe in several places especially since I had the feeling he was mimicking Laura's writing style which is irritating ~~ not just from a reader's point of view, but from a writer's point of view. It didn't flow together like other biographies do ~~ it just isn't written very well.
Secondly, I could imagine Pa and Ma as children or their families while they were growing up. I love that! I wish there were more on them and their families as well but the pieces that I did get to read were very interesting and made them more human. Thirdly, I just love this biography as it brought to life (and the travels) of Laura's childhood and youth. It makes her seem more human.
So she omitted several pieces of her life? Big deal. She doesn't have to share every single story of her life with everyone ~~ maybe they weren't as relevant to her as some of the other places were. Everyone has their own memories of their life which are not shared by others nor supported by facts, but over time, they are very important to that person. I imagine that is how it was for Laura. When I read her books, I know that it's from her memories. I have read her books since I was six years old and I am not scarred by the fact that her memories may not be as accurate as others wanted it to be. I just love her stories. They are stories of her youth and stories of a time that we cannot even begin to imagine today ~~ they are stories of our ancestors that have carved their way from the East Coast to the West Coast, enduring hardships, starvation, and everything else. It often makes me (and friends) wonder if we'd be able to survive today if we were in their shoes. Laura's stories are a more romantic view of that time period, but they do show how hard it is to live life in those times.
This biography reminded me that I did remember hearing of her little brother who died and I had suspected that she had another baby that died shortly after birth. This biography shared stories that I never knew about and found interesting. I knew that Manly suffered from dipitheria (from the book, "The Golden Years"), but not that he suffered from a stroke. And I just have to comment on a reviewer who says that Laura is a hyprocrite ~~ because she lived on credit, and how that ruined her views of the Little House books. If he/she had read a bit further, she/he would have realized that eventually they got themselves out of debt when they made Rocky Ridge prosperous and thriving. And anyone who wonders about that time ~~ ask yourself just what you would have done if you were young and trying to survive on a harsh and unforgiving land? Pa Ingalls is an unique character because he didn't want to be in debt. That doesn't mean that others weren't like that.
As an adult I have a harder time reconciling Almanzo as a good man who fought his way through the blizzard to get grain for the starving townsfolks, but wouldn't share any of his personal grain with anyone. But he is human and no one is perfect. Same thing with Laura. She is an icon for all readers over the years, but she is human with human frailities. But she is a magician with words ~~ she brought to life a time that would have been forgotten if she hadn't taken the time to write these things down. For that, I am grateful. For Laura has given me a glimpse into my ancestors' pasts and an idea of where I came from.
If you're a Laura Ingalls Wilder fan, you'll love this book. If you would like to read more about her and her travels, this book is for you. It is thoroughly researched and the pictures are a great bonus. Enjoy traveling down the path of a time that sings sweetly over the prairie grass.
Good Subject-Easy Read Apr 12, 2007
As most who have read this book I was raised on LHOTP and still watch it today. I will admit it was hard to imagine the real Ingalls' family instead of the TV version in my head. In that vein the pictures were a tremendous help. I did learn alot, but, the author seemed to get stuck on one subject matter and would wring it dry before he finally moved on. Seems things I wanted to know more about only got a few lines, ie; Mary's illness that led to her stroke, the mouse in Pa's hair. Maybe it's me but I just could'nt get excited reading page after page about mud ! Also, it seems to have been written for an under 13 audience, which in my opinion is good, if it will get them reading. All and all a good read for a lazy afternoon or a stint in the hospital after surgery ( where I read it because one doesn't need tons of concentration lol).
re:Acute Observer Aug 2, 2006
The best review of this book to date. Seems Laura Ingalls Wilder was a bit of a hypocrite. She valued self-sufficiency, yet her family lived on credit. Maybe she was in denial when she wrote her books, but the real Laura has spoiled the Little House books for me.
The writing is poor as well.
A INTERESTING READ Mar 20, 2006
I am giving this one five stars simply because of the information I was able to glean from it. This of course was one of the first attempts at a full biography of Wilder, and lacking though it may be in many areas, it is still packed with wonderful tidbits and the pictures and great. Being a "Laura" fan for years, I found the subject of Wilder's life fascinating. The author could have left out any mention of the T.V. Series, which was certainly good, don't get me wrong, but actually had little to do with the Wilder story or her work. The author's technique and style, of this biography, is not my cup of tea, but he was able to get enough facts in to make it well worth the read. Like other reviewers here, I had to wonder "what were the publishers thinking," when they chose the cover for this book. I do not feel I have ever gazed upon such a hideous piece of work. Overall, recommed.
A Journey Through Life Jan 17, 2006
Take a trip down memory lane, and experience the life of Laura Ingalls Wilder in the biography, Laura: The Life Of Laura Ingalls Wilder, written by Donald Zochert. This book that is filled flashbacks, excellent word choices, and interesting facts is not part of any series. Mr. Zochert really poured his heart into this story to make it interesting, and it shows immensely.
Laura and her family, the Ingalls, endure hardships that will test their courage and strength of their faith, family, and love. They experience money problems, deaths, sickness, and crop failure causing them to move around. Along with hardships there are happy times. Things such as meeting new neighbors that help each other, introducing new family members, and Laura starting a family of her own with her husband, Almanzo, will fill your heart with happiness. Laura Ingalls Wilder is truly an extraordinary woman that makes the best of every situation and helps so many people. Throughout the book you constantly wonder when the hard times will be over and happy times will begin. In the end you will have experienced numerous amounts of emotions, but it is well worth them.
I enjoyed learning about numerous details of Laura, and I learned many new things. It made me think of how lucky I am that I did not have to encounter some of the things she did at my age. This book took about two weeks to read, but I wish I would not have had to put it down.
Do you enjoy learning about history? If you do I would recommend this book to you. Also if you are someone who enjoys reading the Little House books wrote by Laura Ingalls Wilder it would spark your interests. After reading about Laura you will truly realize how easy your life is.