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On the Banks of Plum Creek (Little House, #4)
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On the Banks of Plum Creek (Little House #4)

4.18  ·  Rating Details ·  77,682 Ratings  ·  1,100 Reviews
The adventures of Laura Ingalls and her family continue as they leave their little house on the prairie and travel in their covered wagon to Minnesota. Here they settle in a little house made of sod beside the banks of beautiful Plum Creek.

Soon Pa builds a wonderful new little house with real glass windows and a hinged door. Laura and her sister Mary go to school, help wi
216 pages
Published (first published 1937)
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Charlotte I think it might be cool to. But I would not let oxen on it.

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Good grief, as an adult and as a parent, have I grown too practical to read and completely enjoy these books?

When Ma and Pa packed up the kiddos and left the Big Woods because there were too many people, less land and game to go around, I thought a little bit to myself, Um...Pa, did we think through this completely? Are you sure? Are we safe? But Pa is supposed to be an example of Great American Spirit. So, fine, we let this happen. There were some bumps in the road, but oh boy, we have some ma
Deborah Markus
It's easy to get so stuck on the subject matter of the stories Wilder tells that we fail to notice her brilliant, deceptively quiet writing. Her descriptions of scenery are gorgeous, of course; but I love the tiny sentences that tell so much, like this one when eight-year-old Mary and seven-year-old Laura are confronted by a wild herd of cattle:

Mary was too scared to move. Laura was too scared to stand still.

Or similarly simple descriptions of the girls waiting for their mother to come home:

This place should be called "Hell Hole", not "Plum Creek". Grasshoppers and blizzards. Another crappy decision by Pa.
Jun 11, 2014 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was visiting relatives in Minnesota recently and was hit with a wave of nostalgia when I saw a sign for the Laura Ingalls Wilder museum in Walnut Grove. Somewhere in my mother's photo collection there is a picture of 8-year-old me, crouching by the grassy mound that was once the dugout home of Laura Ingalls and her family in the 1870s. Laura's stories from that period are told in the book, "On the Banks of Plum Creek." Coincidentally, Laura was also about 8 in the book.

I loved the Little House
Decided to re-read this preparatory to visiting Walnut Grove!

When I was 7 or 8 this was my favorite of the series and all I remembered about it was the creek and the school and Laura's rivalry with Nellie Oleson. Which is quite remarkable because that is only a couple of chapters, and the rest of the book - the BULK of the book - is the battle against poverty, drought, and mainly, GRASSHOPPERS. The descriptions of the grasshopper swarms are absolutely CHILLING. I literally had goosebumps every t
David Schaafsma
Listened with the family to the great Cherry Jones read this on cd and it is really (again) so surprisingly good. Listening in the car from Davenport, Iowa back to Chicago to finish it, I can't recall stretches of road (gulp). What I recall is Pa telling his story of snow blindness and falling into a ditch in a blizzard and sleeping in a bearskin coat for a couple days under six feet of snow and then, when the storm clears, seeing he was very close to his Plum Banks home and trudging in. Makes R ...more
I loved reading this book while camping. I wasn't exactly in a prairie, but it was great to read this outside lost in the nature. This book was so sweet and charming, and its simplicity was refreshing after some other heavier books I was reading. I loved following Laura and Mary around their underground house, picking up plums and playing in the creek. I loved feeling happy for them when they made a button garland for Carrie's Christmas, or when they got a new cow. And I could sympathize and fee ...more
V. Gingerich
This isn't my favorite Laura book but it contains two of the most impressive, and perhaps famous, scenes: Nellie Olson dancing about with leeches on her legs (the absolute best example of "what goes around, comes around" I've ever seen) and the coming of the grasshoppers (nightmare material, that.)

This is also the book where the doll Charlotte goes and comes back--in two favorite, love-hate scenes--and the book where Laura gets a fur muff. Oh, how I wanted a muff. There are more simple, beautif
Apr 07, 2013 Philip rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Eleanor and I are here to review the latest installment of the Little House series, so Eleanor, I'm going to move it to the "Read" shelf.

E: What color shelf is Gwen's?

Dad: Oh. It's not the color red. There are 3 shelves: read - meaning "I read it," currently reading, and I want to read it.

E: Oh. Maybe for the next book, we could sit on the computer bench and move the Silver Lake book to the "currently-reading" shelf.

D: Ummm... Ok. We can do that. Or, I could I could move it to the "currently-rea
Sep 23, 2014 Lisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this is maria i am lisas daughter.i think the book was favrit part is when laura allmost drowns on the footbrige.the end was very exsiting whith the blizerds.i want to read the next book about this family.
Apr 30, 2016 Lynn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another wonderful installment in this enjoyable series. It never ceases to amuse me that Laura always mentions how "good" Mary is!! So cute! This book presented some more of the horrific dangers that awaited these pioneers! And it is so very different from our world. There was no forewarning of the grasshopper plague, the drought, or the blizzard. You had to have enough experience to just realize what was happening and how best to survive it. They have been lucky enough to always pull through on ...more
Ha! I couldn't even tell you what the cover illustration was on this one (although I'm sure it was the above) as it has been gone for so very long.
A few years ago, my Book Club read The Children's Blizzard, which talked about the settling of the Midwest by the mostly Scandinavian immigrants and how harsh the land was, and really unsuitable for homesteading. While at the time, I thought of The Long Winterthis book illustrates the point as well. When they first arrive, Mr. Nelson is heading west
Dawn Trlak-Donahue
Starting to really agree with a review I read of the Little House books. One woman wrote about how on top of things Alamonzo's family seemed in Farmer Boy. They had a permanent home, savings, etc. Whereas Papa Ingalls was a hot mess. He dragged the family away from their relatives in Wisconsin where they had a home, to Indian country. Along the way they were almost swept away down a river when he insisted they could cross it, wagon and all. (Jack, the dog, gets the short end of the stick overall ...more
I loved this book! I am currently rereading the entire Little House series, which I have not visited since I was a kid. I feel like the books just keep getting better. Since it had been such a long time since I read this, I had forgotten most of the plot and, consequently, it was almost like reading this for the first time.

I was left with a few unanswered questions. For example:(view spoiler)
Aside from Pa's failures to produce the promised wheat crops (he sure talks a helluva game about this in this book) and his need to "walk 300 miles" to find a job, this book features the Ingalls family staying in one place the entire book.

No worries, though. We know how irritating the Norwegians are, how the church folks can't sing in tune, and how the grasshoppers are the root of all evil. Also, Laura is a vindictive little bitch toward one of her classmates and it was kind of fantastic to rea
Dec 12, 2014 Penny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, childrens
Another read through of this, as a read-aloud to several children. This one is all about making the prairie into a home, being swamped with grasshoppers and surviving the winter.

I am finding that the re-reading of these as an adult reveals such a different picture. Charles and Caroline leave their hard won cabin on the prairie to move to a sod house cut into the banks of a creek. Imagine that in winter or flood. They finally build another house by borrowing money against their large wheat crop w
Apr 13, 2015 midnightfaerie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder is an exquisite set of books that I cherished growing up. Read until they were dog-eared, this series has to be one of my childhood favorites. A story about a young girl growing up on the frontier, it was so popular they made it into a T.V. series even though the series didn't do it justice. Stories as a young girl I could relate to, the mean girl in town, fights with my sisters, and just the struggles of everyday life of any family. The love M ...more
Mary Schumann
wow. As other reviewers have stated - the contrast between Pa & Almanzo's father could not be greater. Reading these as an adult is rather mind-blowing. Add "as a parent" and it takes on a whole new level of "holy crap!". I simply cannot fathom doing the things that they did, nor weathering the storms that they did - quite literally. Nor putting my children in the way of harm the way that was done then (as when Pa decides to leave the whole family alone for months on end or simply days on en ...more
Oct 10, 2008 Stephy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every child six and over
Recommended to Stephy by: My Father brought them home to me, one by one, as they came out.
My gosh, what didn't I learn about real history from these books. Laura Ingalls Wilder was a staple of my library most of my childhood. back then you could cite me a line and I knew which book it came from, who said it and in what circumstance! I learned that as my father, born in 1899, was fond of pointing out to us, we had life easy! People worked really HARD for a living back then, and lucky to have three sets of clothing, and hope you liked mush, 'cause you ate it a lot! Dresses down to the ...more
Aug 21, 2016 Laura rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, read-2016
This was easily my favorite book of the series so far. The chapter length was perfect for reading out loud to my kids and most chapters read like its own little adventure. I also enjoyed how this book didn't go into super lengthy detailed descriptions, unlike the previous books. Parts of the book made us laugh out loud. We all enjoyed the stories from a simpler time, a time when people didn't have so much stuff and a pair of shoes where cherished. There were several important life lessons that e ...more
Jun 04, 2015 Imani rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
OMG! I forgot I'd ever read this book! And it was one of my favorites as a kid! I read it over and over, and I KNOW I owned it. What the heck even happened to it? D: I think it got destroyed somehow which is so sacrilegious...but omg I'm so glad I found this on GR. It's such a classic and written so beautifully.
The whole time I was reading this book, I kept feeling like I had read it before. I mean, I have read it before, but years and years ago, as a kid and as a teen. I kept reading, and I kept telling myself what was going to happen next, and it finally dawned on me, I had recently re-read the book - I just didn't update goodreads with the info, or bother to write a review!

So this book, so far, is my favorite in the series. I love the imagery that Ingalls uses throughout the book to describe the sc
সালমান হক
লিটল হাউজ সিরিজের বই গুলোর মধযে অনয রকম একটা আকরষন আছে। পড়া শুরু করলে থামা যায় না। একদমই সহজ সরল সাদা মাটা জীবনের বরণনা । কিনতু লেখিকার লেখার হাত এমন যে মনে হয় সব কিছু চোখের সামনে ঘটছে। পুরো বই এর মাঝেই কেমন জানি কিউট কিউট একটা ভাব আছে। :) আমার ধারণা যে কোন বয়সের যে কেউ এটা পড়তে পারবে। ভালো না লাগার কোন কারণ নাই। আগে সেবার অনুবাদ টা পড়েছিলাম, কিনতু ওটা এতই ছোট যে অনেক কিছুই বাদ পড়ে গিয়েছিল। ...more
The events of this book pick up shortly after the events at the end of Little House on the Prairie. It depicts the differences of living in a dugout versus an actual house as well as the differences of living so close to town than living 5-10 miles away. The things that they had to make it through were very interesting, and I often wondered how communication happened with their Norwegian neighbors if the neighbors could not speak or understand English! I hated how abruptly the book ended, but it ...more
We are back to Laura's childhood and here is where they and the reader meet Nellie Oleson and other characters that form the basis for what would become a beloved television program. The Ingalls family are able to attend church, Sunday School and for the first time Laura and Mary are able to attend school. As always they are faced with many of the challenges of settling in a new territory and farming is not an easy way to live when nature prevails to take back the land. Yet there is love, laugh ...more
A welcome relief after the drudgery of "Farmer Boy". The girls and I raced through this one in comparison! They both were excited to read it daily, and we'd often do several chapters at a time. At the end of the book tonight, we realized the last chapter is the THIRD Christmas in the book! (Molly likes the second Christmas the best with all the unexpected presents, I like the third with no presents except Pa safe and sound, everyone warm at home through the winter storm and the prospect of wheat ...more
Mar 20, 2013 Darcy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
On the Banks of Plum Creek has always been one of my favorite Little House books. This story makes me want to run barefoot through tall prairie grasses, roll down haystacks, and wade through muddy creeks. It makes the idea of only getting a package of candy for Christmas seem extra-special and a dinner of “beautiful brown baked beans [and] golden corn-bread” sounds more appealing than steak and crème brulee. I don’t know how she does it, but Laura Ingalls Wilder weaves some sort of prairie magic ...more
May 25, 2010 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: personal-reading
This was one of my favorite Little House books as a kid because I thought it would be so fun to live in a dugout on Plum Creek! I also remember being appalled at the meanness of Nellie Olsen, and I still think she was mean! I thought I was making up the memory of the story about Laura leading Nellie into the leeches in the creek, but then, there it was, just as I remembered it! It really is fun to revisit some childhood favorites. As a kid I thought it would be fun to be Laura Ingalls Wilder, bu ...more
Apr 09, 2016 Whitney rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm going to read all of these.
Aug 05, 2016 Kailey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
This has never been my favorite of the Little House books, but it's still a very good one. The descriptions of the struggles and simple joys of pioneer life are so beautifully written that you can truly feel the piercing heat of a summer day or the paralyzing cold of a blizzard. Brilliant writing and a wonderful series that I have read and reread so many times since my girlhood that I've lost count!
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The Pleasant Pioneer: On the Banks of Plum Creek 4 4 Jul 20, 2016 11:05AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Shouldn't these be combined? 2 138 Jun 11, 2016 01:12PM  
Discussion #2 1 9 Feb 02, 2015 10:07PM  
  • Little Farm in the Ozarks (Little House: The Rocky Ridge Years, #2)
  • The Far Side of the Loch (Little House: The Martha Years, #2)
  • Little Town at the Crossroads (Little House: The Caroline Years, #2)
  • Betsy Was a Junior (Betsy-Tacy, #7)
  • Felicity Learns a Lesson: A School Story (American Girls: Felicity, #2)
  • Little City by the Lake (Little House: The Caroline Years, #6)
  • Henry and the Clubhouse (Henry, #5)
  • More All-of-a-Kind Family (All-of-a-Kind Family, #2)
Ingalls wrote a series of historical fiction books for children based on her childhood growing up in a pioneer family. She also wrote a regular newspaper column and kept a diary as an adult moving from South Dakota to Missouri, the latter of which has been published as a book.
More about Laura Ingalls Wilder...

Other Books in the Series

Little House (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Little House in the Big Woods (Little House, #1)
  • Little House on the Prairie (Little House, #2)
  • Farmer Boy (Little House, #3)
  • By the Shores of Silver Lake  (Little House, #5)
  • The Long Winter (Little House, #6)
  • Little Town on the Prairie  (Little House, #7)
  • These Happy Golden Years (Little House, #8)
  • The First Four Years  (Little House, #9)
  • On the Way Home: The Diary of a Trip from South Dakota to Mansfield, Missouri, in 1894  (Little House #10)
  • West from Home: Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder, San Francisco, 1915  (Little House #11)

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“She heard pa shouting,"Jiminy crickets!It's raining fish-hooks and hammer handles!” 33 likes
“Snow as fine and grainy as sugar covered the windows in and sifted off to the floor and did not melt.” 5 likes
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