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Little House in the Big Woods (Little House #1)

4.14  ·  Rating Details  ·  143,868 Ratings  ·  3,333 Reviews
Laura Ingalls and her family live deep in the Big Woods of Wisconsin. Their log cabin is surrounded by miles of trees, and their closest neighbors are bears, wolves, and panthers. Daily chores keep Laura and her sister Mary busy, but they still find time to go exploring with their dog, Jack.
Paperback, 198 pages
Published January 1st 2007 by HarperTrophy (first published 1932)
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Autumn No. It is based on her life, but it's not 100% true. Even so, it's a great book. :)
Charlotte's Web by E.B. WhiteThe Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson BurnettThe Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. LewisAnne of Green Gables by L.M. MontgomeryLittle Women by Louisa May Alcott
Favorite books from my childhood
10th out of 3,387 books — 6,374 voters
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. RowlingLittle House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls WilderCharlotte's Web by E.B. WhiteThe Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. LewisTwilight by Stephenie Meyer
What Book Got You Hooked?
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Summer
I started rereading this series because of John Scieszka's bizarre hatred of Little House on the Prairie. In attempting the perfectly noble task of getting young boys to read more, Scieszka has continuously heaped scorn on that book, banishing it to the girl ghetto of the Sweet Valley High and American Girls series. Putting aside the unfair comparison to syndicate titles published for purely commercial reasons, his assesment of Little House as a book purely for girls is infuriating.

For one thing
...more
Laurel Wicke
Apr 10, 2008 Laurel Wicke rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-to-logan
Reading this to my daughter has helped me rediscover the joy of the Little House series all over again. Probably the best gift this little book has to offer is that of perspective. How blessed but complicated our lives seem now. How very different and yet the same. I loved sharing a slice of history with my child who has no concept of life before dvr's, minivans, and microwaves. That a child could be happy with a corncob doll was a unique thought. This series should be on the reading list for ev ...more
Brad
For a few years now, I've been interviewing my twins after they finish reading their books, posting those interviews on their own goodreads profile. My girl, Brontë, finished reading Little House in the Big Woods about a month ago, and I read it this week (I always read or reread the books they've read.) You can see that interview with me right here:

Brontë: So first ... did you like it? did you love it? or did you hate? did you think it was okay? or did you really like it?

Pa: I loved it. It was
...more
Prayudi Setiadharma
I found this book among my aunts' collections in my grandpa's house when i was living there for three-months back in 1987. Once I read it, I never stop to read over and over again.

Well, the life of the Ingalls is wonderful indeed. But what attracts me more is the fact that this book always makes me hungry all the time. You don't believe me, do you? Well, don't take my words for it, just try yourself...especially when you're reading through the "pouring hot maple syrup in the snow", "roasting th
...more
Kathleen
Aug 09, 2007 Kathleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Parents and teachers as a read-aloud book, young readers of all ages
I did a wonderful year-long read aloud with my kindergarten class last year, and it was a fantastic experience. They asked so many good questions, and it spawned so much good discussion, exciting writing and enthusiasm about the books. Kids talked, wrote and drew pictures about different episodes all year. I highly recommend it. I would have loved to integrate this with more study of one-room schoolhouses and our city so many years ago (maybe for 2nd grade?). Part of the reason this worked well ...more
D
Sep 26, 2007 D rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lovers of American lore
The first installment in the Little House series is, hands down, my favorite. Unlike later books, this window into a young Laura's first home, where for the only time in her life she's surrounded by extended family, their cultures, and their heritage, stands in contrast to the transience that marks her well into adulthood. Little House in the Big Woods takes comfort in housekeeping's simple pleasures, Pa's chilling stories told before a crackling fire in a snug log cabin, and family communion. T ...more
Duane
This is the first book in the Little House Series, and somewhat overlooked due to the popularity of the second book, Little House on the Prairie. I've read both and liked both; this volume being a wonderful introduction to Laura and the Ingalls familly. I didn't read this series as a child, but as an adult I've come to appreciate it's beauty, and it's importance in the canon of American Children's Literature. Some may say this is too simple for adults to appreciate, and starting out it seems tha ...more
Krista Wright
Oct 13, 2015 Krista Wright rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Such a sweet, simple book! I loved this series when I was a kid, and it's so fun to go back and read them all over again now.
Libby
Mar 22, 2008 Libby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This first installment in the Little House series has always been my favorite (although I love them all, and am letting this single review stand in for the series entire), probably because A. As the first Little House book I read, I hold a special affection for its magic (it was my entree into an amazing other world) and B. As other smart reviewers have pointed out, there's something sort of sad about the fact that it chronicles the only chapter in Laura's life in which she was surrounded by her ...more
Beth
Jan 06, 2016 Beth marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
I really cannot recall if I read the Little House series as a young girl. I have very vague memories of sometimes watching the television show.

Anyway. The Little House series popped back up on my radar when I read Dear Genius: The Letters of Ursula Nordstrom. Nordstrom was director of Harper Books for Boys and Girls (now simply known as HarperCollins Children’s Books) from 1940 – 1973. So it goes without saying that Nordstrom had a MAJOR role in publishing some pretty AMAZING children’s books th
...more
Kaeleigh Forsyth
Dec 26, 2012 Kaeleigh Forsyth rated it really liked it
I'm gonna read the series this week. I got the fanciest box set on sale at Strand, and the cashier goes, "wow you must be the greatest aunt in the world." naw bitch, these are mine. I didn't get my nephew shit.

Manny
Feb 18, 2009 Manny rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
I didn't usually like girly books when I was a kid, but this one was an exception. Her matter-of-fact descriptions of life in the Big Woods were just so fascinating! The fact that the main character was a girl seemed pretty irrelevant.

Beth Ann and I have several times discussed writing a modern-day sequel entitled Little House in the Valley. Laura gets up early every morning to sort the spam and check the website. Then she squeezes orange juice and makes two big lattes for Daddy and his boyfrien
...more
Wendy Darling
My annual re-read, this time with the lovely Heidi! :)
Sarah
Jul 21, 2011 Sarah rated it really liked it
3.5 stars from me, 5 from Owen.

His review:

I chose to have more than a zillion stars. It was about the author growing up when she was a kid. One of the most interesting part was about the [wheat] thrasher guys. They had this big machine that ran on horsepower called the separator. It separated wheat.

There was a dance in it at Grandpa's house. The author's Grandpa used maple trees to make maple syrup that they put on snow to make yummy candy.

It was all about the 1870s, when Laura Ingalls Wilder
...more
Ann
My mom read this series to me when I was young, and I've held a soft spot for them ever since. So, it was wonderful to read them again as an adult and find Laura Ingalls Wilder's writing just as intriguing, captivating, fascinating and beautifully sweet!

Laura is only about three years old here, and the story centers around one year in her life. In addition to Laura there is her older sister Mary, and Ma, Pa, and Baby Carrie.

The first thing that struck me upon rereading this was how "slow" it in
...more
Nabila Tabassum Chowdhury
কী সুনদর! :) সকালে উঠা, কিছু কাজ করম করা বা বাবা-মা কে করতে দেখা, এরপর বাবার গলপ আর গান শুনতে শুনতে ঘুমিয়ে যাওয়া এমন পরতিদিনকার বযাপার দিয়েও মুগধ করা যায়! এটা একমাতর তখনই সমভব যখন এটা একটি ছোটট বাচচার চোখে দেখা হয়। আমি ওর চোখ দিয়ে দেখে মযাপেলের গুড় তৈরিতে অবাক হই, ফসল মাড়াইয়ের যনতর আমার কাছে অবাক করা কিছু মনে হয়। কাঠের ছোটট দোকানে জিনিসপতরের রাজযে মনে হয় আমি হারিয়ে যাচছি। ফায়ার পলেস আর বাবার কোলের উষণতা ঘিরে ধরে আমাকে। বনের ধারে কাঠের গুড়ি দিয়ে গড়া সেই ঘরই যেন সবরগ, সবরগের এখানে কোনো পরয়োজন নেই। ...more
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
Second reading: 4/10/2011

I went nuts for this series beginning in 4th grade, so much so that I was convinced I'd been born in the wrong century. Given how crazy I was about these books, it's surprising I never went back to read them again before now. Thank you, Kressel, for the inspiration.

The two memories that stayed with me about this book down through all these years were the way Pa played the fiddle at night and the part where they poured the maple syrup on snow. Reading it again refreshed m
...more
Diane
May 18, 2013 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
They say you can't go home again, but if you're rereading a beloved children's book, I think you can. I have happy memories of reading the Laura Ingalls Wilder books with my mother, and revisiting these wonderful stories of Laura and Mary and Ma and Pa made me feel as cozy and loved as I did when I was a girl. I'm looking forward to rereading the entire series.
Shell The Belle
4.75 Excellent Heart Tugging stars!!

I watched this series as a youngster growing up, and now with three girls of my own I read this to the older two at bedtimes a few years back.

What struck me is the difference from the TV series; whilst Pa is still a strong character and is no doubt a good man and wonderful father, things surprised me, such as when he beat Laura with a stick after she had a fight with Mary.

Also, the way Laura talks about Mary, as in she appears to really resent her, doesn't com
...more
Jessica
May 31, 2015 Jessica rated it it was amazing
A million stars. This is probably my 6th time reading this book. It was read to me by my mom, read a few times by myself as a girl, read it to my older set of kids and now sharing with my younger ones as we prepare for a cross country road trip with plans to stop at a few Laura Ingalls Wilder homes.

My kids LOVED it. There's so much to learn about life 130 years ago...gives them an appreciation for hard work and self reliance. I love the happy family portrayed. We always have a good feeling in o
...more
Jamie
Jan 09, 2009 Jamie rated it it was amazing
Every child in America, boy or girl, should read these books or, better yet, have their parents read them to them. I have wonderful memories of sitting on my mom's lap in a rocking chair while she read to me of all the trails and adventures of the Ingalls family. It's reminds us of where we came from and how hard the pioneers worked for America to thrive.
Hannah
Jan 16, 2016 Hannah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-reads, own
June 13, 2015: Just as wonderful as the first three or four times I read it :D
Denee
Apr 18, 2008 Denee rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
I was at the library one day and searching in desperation for a book that my 6 year old wouldn't be able to finish in the short 3 minute drive from the library to home. Glancing around, I spied the shelf of Little House books. "Aha!" I thought. "The Little House in the Big Woods will keep her busy for at least 3 or 4 days. Plus, it's full of good manners and details of a life when you had to work as a family to be able to survive." I checked the book out and my daughter started reading it voraci ...more
Wendy
Aug 29, 2007 Wendy rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Kids and outdoorsy types
Shelves: recommended
Again a great book to read with your children. (Okay, I'm biased because my parents read the whole series to me.) Little House in the Big Woods is about the Ingalls family when they lived in the Wisconsin woods - hunting, trapping, and farming for a living. It has loads of details about every day life and the family and community life in such a secluded setting. There is danger from the animals in the woods - panthers, bears, badgers, bees, etc. It also talks about simultaneously loving the wood ...more
Becky
I loved these books when I was a little girl. I don't remember them individually, rather as a whole, so this re-read was part refresher and part new experience.

This is a sweet book, but it didn't really live up to my shining golden childhood memories. There wasn't really much story here - it was more a chronicling of pioneer life, and their simple joys and trials and the simple love and respect that they had for each other.

I'll admit that Pa wasn't as perfect as my shining golden childhood mem
...more
Emily
We just finished reading this aloud for bedtime story, and my boys loved it! They were fascinated to learn about how certain things were made long ago, like bullets and cheese and maple syrup. And they enjoyed comparing the Ingalls' Christmas celebration to ours - they were horrified that they each only got two or three presents! But they thought playing with a pig's bladder was really gross.

We're on to Little House on the Prairie next!

For more book reviews, come visit my blog, Build Enough Book
...more
Karina Petersen
Så blev vi færdige med, at læse om Familien, der bor ude i den store skov, der er fyldt med fakta, hårde livsvilkår, men fyldt med en hjertevarme, fortryllende fortællinger og masser af kærlighed,som varmede mit hjerte. Min datter og jeg har nydt og læse denne første bog om pigerne Laura og Mary, hvor vi har haft mange samtaler omkring handlingen i bogen, som jeg glæder mig til snart, at fortælle om på bloggen.
~~Poulomi Sylphrena Tonk$~~
May 16, 2015 ~~Poulomi Sylphrena Tonk$~~ rated it liked it
Recommended to ~~Poulomi Sylphrena Tonk$~~ by: Zaara
3 homely stars!

One word about this book- ADORABLE.
The warmth of a parent’s heart, the simplicity of childhood, the childish innocence that rests in those big eyes is what makes the book a lovely thing.

Liitle House In The Big Woods felt more like a prelude to an upcoming series. There was so proper plot as such; it’s a random meshwork of events that describe how being part of a family is a beautiful experience altogether.

These were the parts I loved the most:

*The Christmas celebration and the
...more
Alison
Jan 14, 2009 Alison rated it it was amazing
Little House in the Big Woods is a book I will never forget. Laura Ingalls Wilder is a wonderful author, she describes everything with beautiful description, like how the pie melts in her mouth and how the grass tickles her toes. She explains the hardships of living in the 18th century but also tells you about the fun times she had when she was a child. This is the first book in the series of her Little House books and it is all about when she was five and how she used to live and some significa ...more
midnightfaerie
Apr 09, 2015 midnightfaerie rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens, classics
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
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  • On the Other Side of the Hill (Little House: The Rocky Ridge Years, #4)
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  • Betsy-Tacy and Tib (Betsy-Tacy, #2)
  • Samantha Saves the Day: A Summer Story (American Girls: Samantha, #5)
  • Little House in Brookfield (Little House: The Caroline Years, #1)
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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...

Other Books in the Series

Little House (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Little House on the Prairie (Little House, #2)
  • Farmer Boy (Little House, #3)
  • On the Banks of Plum Creek  (Little House, #4)
  • 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 thought to herself, "This is now." She was glad that the cozy house, and Pa and Ma and the firelight and the music, were now. They could not be forgotten, she thought, because now is now. It can never be a long time ago.” 40 likes
“When the fiddle had stopped singing Laura called out softly, “What are days of auld lang syne, Pa?”

“They are the days of a long time ago, Laura,” Pa said. “Go to sleep, now.”

But Laura lay awake a little while, listening to Pa’s fiddle softly playing and to the lonely sound of the wind in the Big Woods. She looked at Pa sitting on the bench by the hearth, the firelight gleaming on his brown hair and beard and glistening on the honey-brown fiddle. She looked at Ma, gently rocking and knitting.

She thought to herself, “This is now.”

She was glad that the cosy house, and Pa and Ma and the firelight and the music, were now. They could not be forgotten, she thought, because now is now. It can never be a long time ago.”
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