Farmer Boy (Little House, #3)
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Farmer Boy (Little House #3)

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  29,420 ratings  ·  1,005 reviews
While Laura Ingalls grows up in a little house on the western prairie, Almanzo Wilder is living on a big farm in New York State. Here Almanzo and his brother and sisters help with the summer planting and fall harvest. In winter there is wood to be chopped and great slabs of ice to be cut from the river and stored. Time for fun comes when the jolly tin peddler visits, or be...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published April 8th 2008 by HarperCollins (first published 1933)
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Community Reviews

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Wendy Darling
My annual re-read, this time with Heidi! :)

My favorite of the Little House books from start to finish, but especially the chapter where Ma and Pa go away for a week and the house falls into disarray as the children eat cake, slice watermelon, blacken the parlor wall, and most importantly, use up all the sugar making ice cream. Still no other author has ever captured the life of pioneers in quite this way, and the good eats will make your mouth water!
Upon finishing Little House on the Prairie the kids and I were dying to know where the Ingalls' adventures would take them next but discovered that the next in the series focuses on Almanzo Wilder, Laura's future husband. We were immediately taken in by the descriptions of late 1800's farm life in upper New York State. We were struck in particular by the richness Almanzo's family enjoyed in comparison with the Ingalls who seemed to be moving all the time. One of my favorite features of this book...more
I loved all the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, in particular "Little House in the Big Woods", "Little Town on the Prairie" and "These Happy Golden Years". They are books I can read and savor over and over again. But I just need to give a shout out to my absolute favorite Laura Ingalls Wilder book, and that is "Farmer Boy"--to me, Farmer Boy is the under-appreciated middle child of the Laura Ingalls collection. People forget about it just because it doesn't start with "Little" or end with "Prairie"....more
Before I hand the reviewing reigns over to Eleanor, I wanted to say a couple things I took out of this book. (Hopefully she doesn't get too impatient.)

There's a lot in the Laura Ingalls Wilder books written for adults as well as kids. The theme of self-reliance comes through loud and clear. The difference in child-rearing... wow. Hold on:

Me: Eleanor, what does it mean to "speak when spoken to?"


Me: Do you think we should make that a rule in our ho...more
I still didn't love it as well the first few books about Laura's childhood, perhaps because I know and love the Little House stories so well from my own childhood (I know my mom read me "Farmer Boy" but I don't really remember it). That said, I did quite enjoy and appreciate Almanzo's story this time and feel Laura deftly articulated his conundrums being on the cusp of boyhood and young-manhood, both his eagerness to do the more adult work on the farm with his father and older brother as well as...more
I loved these farm stories told from 9-year-old Almanzo's point of view. I don't think I read this book when I was young, but it was delightful to read it as an adult.

My father grew up on a farm, and I inherited his pride in what farmers have accomplished. I liked this quote, spoken by Almanzo's father:

"A farmer depends on himself, and the land and the weather. If you're a farmer, you raise what you eat, you raise what you wear, and you keep warm with wood out of your own timber. You work hard,...more
Book Concierge
Book on CD read by Cherry Jones

Considered Book # 3 in the Little House series, this book is about a young boy growing up on a farm in upstate New York. Almonzo Wilder will eventually find his way to Laura’s part of the country, but for now he is just starting school and eager to be allowed to work the horses. He’s certain that he would be gentle and never startle them, but Father won’t let him near the prize colts. In the meantime Almonzo learns to farm. The book covers about eighteen months in...more
Cheryl in CC NV
Probably my favorite - I loved all the descriptions of food, and of chores.

Reread to my teen son. I wouldn't try to inflict Laura's stories on him, but this one is basically a stand-alone. And my son says Almanzo is 'so cute' in his eagerness to be thought responsible enough to do real chores and to have a colt of his own.

I'd forgotten how strict his parents were, and how young he was. And how much explanation there was, for example of how to train calves and make a bobsled and use the new machi...more
#3 Farmer Boy - August 2011

I listened to Farmer Boy for the most part, only read a chapter or two in the middle on my own. I enjoy the book so much more read by Cherry Jones rather than my own voice in my brain. She makes me feel so cozy and I'm swept back in time. I don't think I ever read Farmer Boy when I was young, only the books starring Laura. I can't believe how hard Almanzo had to work at such a young age. And he enjoyed the work! And I really can't believe how much he ate! So much food!...more
Almanzo is so cute and lovable-- reading this book is like playing with an adorable loving puppy.

And the food descriptions-- made me crave more food than any exercise or episode on the food network.
Kressel Housman
Mar 28, 2011 Kressel Housman rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: kids, boys, parents
I was a Little House fan as a girl, but since Farmer Boy is the story of Almanzo’s childhood and not Laura’s, I didn’t bother with it. Who wanted to read about boys? Then, I grew up, and it turned out Farmer Boy was my husband’s favorite of the entire series. And since G-d has blessed us with sons, my husband brought it in for them. Our eldest read it on his own, and I read it aloud to the younger ones, which turned out to be a real treat. The book is every bit as good as the rest of the series,...more
I haven't read this in 30 years. It was a treat. We chose it as our October Homeschool bookclub book. In general the parents liked it more than the kids, but many of the kids loved it. We were all struck by the dawn to dust work that the family did, including Almanzo and his siblings. I think many of the parents started thinking "Hmm, 9 year olds doing chores twice a day, what a great idea..." Our kids were wary of that gleam in our eyes.

But along with the useful skills Almanzo learned, and the...more
ஐ Briansgirl (Book Sale Queen)ஐ
Okay, I didn't really want to read this book in the series, because it's all about Almanzo's childhood (Laura's future husband). However, once I got started, it was a wonderful peek into how a farmer's life revolves around the seasons and how they did everything by hand. Here's a wonderful quote from page 370, from Almanzo's father... A farmer depends on himself, and the land and the weather. If you're a farmer, you raise what you eat, you raise what you wear, and you keep warm with wood out of...more
My six year old daughter is currently obsessed by these books (as was I as a child) and so we are reading them aloud together. I got a bit off in their proper order and mis-remembered Farmer Boy as #2 in the series (it is actually #3), but no harm done. As a child, this was actually my least favorite of the series if only because I simply loved Laura and Mary (probably because I related to them best). But as an adult, I found this installment of the series absolutely delightful. My daughter love...more
Taylor Brazil
This will be a great book for sixth grade and up to tenth grade. The reason is that it is about the age of the childs that are in the book.It also the genstation came compare there life to the book.
the plot of this book is on a farm . There are four kids. The children have to walk to there school every day but there is once in a will there stay home to help with course. The family goes to church every sunday . Now they don't have cars they have a team of horse and a sleigh. the family has to hav...more
Read this one with my 6 year old son and we are really enjoying it...this was a favorite when I was a girl...all of the "little House" books were...I am surprised at what huge plot details I forgot....for example, I didn't remember just how Mr. Corse, the seemingly milquetoast teacher, dealt with the big bad boys and was just as surprised as my son when the blacksnake whip came out...of course, by then I was committed, and my son was just as surprised, I think, that I had chosen a book with such...more
Duchess Nicole
Well, I read this with my three daughters and husband in the evenings before bedtime. While I loved getting the insight into Almanzo's life, the rest of the family definitely were more restless during reading time than they were with Laura's books. I suppose because Almanzo's book all took place in the same house, and everything that happened was fairly normal. There were a lot of pages of descriptions on how to make things around the farm and very detailed talk of farm life. Despite that, it wa...more
Once again my boys were enthralled by the vivid descriptions that Wilder created of life in the late 1800s. This book focuses on the early childhood of Laura's husband Almanzo who lived and worked on a family farm in New York state. Parents should be warned this book starts off really rocky. Wilder relates a tale of how some older boys had beat a teacher to death. Almanzo fears for the new teacher. The new teacher, Mr. Corse, fends off the attack by beating the students back with a bullwhip. It'...more
Of all the Little House books, this is the only one I have never reread. And I didn't want to. Until I read Shelf Discovery last year, which piqued my interest. Plus it's weird that I have reread a series dozens of times, except for one volume. So I resolved to reread it this year. And as usual I am glad I did.

I have no recollection of this book at all it turns out. While reading it, it felt all unfamiliar and new, not like a reread in the slightest. (I was probably six when my parents first rea...more
I came back to this old childhood favorite because I am spending this summer working on a small vegetable farm. These books are every bit as wonderful as they were when I first read them as a child, although I notice different things now.

This is certainly an idealized version of 19th-century American farming - the Wilder family farm is wonderfully prosperous and the main hardship of the story is that Almanzo's father does not think he is old enough to help train the horses. I suppose the fact th...more
At first the boys weren't at all sure if they liked this switch to Almanzo's life story; they kept wanting to know what Laura was up to. But they got in to it soon enough, right about when we got to the story of the schoolteacher whipping the big bullies with the blacksnake ox-whip. (I had forgotten that these boys had beaten their previous schoolteacher so badly that he later died of his injuries. It astounds me that the father of one of the boys was bragging about it and that no one was punish...more
This is new to me - Laura Ingalls wrote an account of her husband's childhood. Alfonzo grew up like Laura, working hard on the homestead of his parents. They come across as wealthier than the Ingalls but Alfonzo works very hard even at the age of 8. The children I read this to were astounded at how much work he had to do and how firm his parents were. As usual there is a lot of humour and a lot of information about life in those days. A great read.
I didn't read this one when I was a kid. Maybe I was stopped by the seemingly endless descriptions of farmwork...I can't quite remember.

However, now that I have read it, I did like it. It was comforting in an old-fashioned sense. You really got a feel for how the father was raising Almanzo to be independent. Today's world could take lessons from this book.
I thought this was an enjoyable, fast and easy read with many good lessons to learn from. It not only gives really good descriptions of farm life from the 19th century, but it also gives many examples of how these parents taught their children all sorts of lessons and life skills. It was recommended on the TJEd website as a book to read aloud with your family. My kids are a little too young to appreciate it right now, but I did read parts of it out loud anyway, just to be reading to them. This b...more
Lee Anne
This was always every little girl's least favorite in the series, but reading it now as an adult, I love the food porniness of it. Every chapter has at least one meal description.
if i had to rank all the lhop books this one is my favorite. i actually skipped this one in the order it was supposed to be read and was annoyed that it was even written, so i saved it for last. and it was my favorite.

maybe it was because someone pointed out that almanzo wilder was actually pretty cute in his picture on wikipedia.

it changed my perspective on farming. now i think farming is pretty cool and i also think almanzo wilder rocks! okay so maybe i thought he needed to be redeemed in som...more
Yeah this book mostly just made me really hungry. Also it made me feel like a lazy person, but I don't live on a farm! so I have a good excuse, right?
Mike Ogilvie
It was an enjoyable experience to ramble through the daily life of a 9-10 year old farmer boy from 100+ years ago. While I'm sure it was overall idealized for younger readers, as a fictional, slice-of-life memoir it seemed pretty spot-on. A more detailed version of someone's recollection of their youth.

Truth be told, it was intriguing to learn about some of the nuances of how farmers (probably) would have done things back then. The overall tone is pretty light hearted and non-serious, but somewh...more
Dutch Rhudy
I enjoyed reading the Little House books several times over the many years since they first published. Recently, I visited Laura Ingall Wilder's home in Mansfield, MO, over a July 4th vacation.
Toured the home where she wrote the Little House books. Visited the museum; and purchased the 9 volume set, and a few other items, from the Rocky Ridge Book Store.
This current reading, of the set, is the first time I read them in order. It was a treat to myself.
If you have never read the Little House serie...more
Continuing my re-read of the Little House books, I was shocked to discover that my copy of this one is also sans cover, as I really didn't have a memory of much that happened. I remembered Star and Bright, and Manley's siblings, but that was about it. It makes an interesting contrast between his upbringing and Laura's much poorer and much more Puritan background.
It's also a good reminder of how much hard farm work will allow you to eat :) I also appreciated that he wasn't good, good, good, and h...more
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Goodreads Librari...: series has an edition with wrong order numbering 3 171 Jan 05, 2013 10:44AM  
  • On the Other Side of the Hill (Little House: The Rocky Ridge Years, #4)
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  • Changes for Samantha: A Winter Story (American Girls: Samantha, #6)
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  • All-of-a-Kind Family Downtown (All-of-a-Kind Family, #2)
  • The Great Brain at the Academy (Great Brain #4)
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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...
Little House on the Prairie (Little House, #2) The Little House Collection (Little House, #1-9) Little House in the Big Woods (Little House, #1) On the Banks of Plum Creek  (Little House, #4) Little Town on the Prairie  (Little House, #7)

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“Never bet your money on another man's game.” 21 likes
“A farmer depends on himself, and the land and the weather. If you're a farmer, you raise what you eat, you raise what you wear, and you keep warm with wood out of your own timber. You work hard, but you work as you please, and no man can tell you to go or come. You'll be free and independent, son, on a farm.” 11 likes
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