I picked up The Wilder Life by Wendy McClure on my birthday. I, too, grew up reading and loving Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Little House books. Ms. McClure has decided to follow Laura and go to her various homesteads around the country. Who knew that this famous series of books would create a small cottage industry in tourism?
But the Wilder Life is more than just travel memoir, it is also social commentary on why we yearn for these simpler times. We meet fellow travelers who also share the fervor for Laura. Some of whom have some pretty creepy reasons for learning homesteading skills.
McClure also takes a great portion of the book to talk about her own love of Laura and why she so desires to be part of her world. Everywhere she goes, she lingers over artifacts and enjoys the sights and sounds that Laura and her family would have enjoyed.
I also loved the intellectual discussions of the fictional Laura versus the real Laura, and I learned a lot more about the role Rose Wilder had in bringing her mother's books to life. At the time, Rose Wilder was every bit as famous as her mother.
I found this book to be insightful and funny. I enjoyed Ms Mclure's travels and insights and sense of humor. Although I have not read those books in more than 30 years, it was fun to relive all the moments from the books that I could remember through the lens of a fellow Wilder fan and insightful writer. I think anyone who loved Laura Ingalls as a girl would enjoy this fun look at her and her writing.
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