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A Wilder Rose: Rose Wilder Lane, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and Their Little Houses

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3.61  ·  Rating details ·  3,122 ratings  ·  558 reviews
From bestselling, award-winning author Susan Wittig Albert comes the true story of Rose Wilder Lane, who transformed her mother, Laura Ingalls Wilder, from a farmer’s wife and occasional writer into the world-famous author of the Little House books. A Wilder Rose is a novel about of two exceptional women: a mother who has a fascinating pioneer story to tell but lacks the s ...more
Hardcover, 302 pages
Published October 1st 2013 by Persevero Press (first published August 28th 2013)
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Jeannie My grandparents lost their farm in Texas in the dust bowl era .The dire conditions described in the book were very much like the stories I heard growi…moreMy grandparents lost their farm in Texas in the dust bowl era .The dire conditions described in the book were very much like the stories I heard growing up.(less)

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Margitte
A Wilder Rose
Rose Wilder Lane, Laura Ingalls Wilder and Their Little Houses - by Susan Wittig Albert.


The novel is based on the lives of Laura Ingalls Wilder and her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane and highlights the years between 1928 and 1939. A more compelling, fascinating blend of fact and fiction could not have been written by these two remarkable women behind "Little House on the Prairie" and the rest of the books in the Little House Series.

"Sometimes we need to use fiction to tell the truth. So
...more
Manybooks
Oh wow, but I do have to consider that Susan Wittig Albert’s historical fiction but according to the latter supposedly and strongly based on truth and reality novel A Wilder Rose is unfortunately yet another of these annoying and in my opinion not to be in any way taken seriously and considered viewpoints that Rose Wilder Lane was some poor, misunderstood and verbally/emotionally abused victim (of mostly her mother Laura Ingalls Wilder), that Laura Ingalls Wilder actually could not adequately a ...more
Wendy McClure
A Wilder Rose is a novel about the decade Rose Wilder Lane spent working with her mother, Laura Ingalls Wilder, on the manuscripts that became the Little House books—which were published under Wilder’s name, even though Lane did much to shape and improve them.

Those who’ve read extensively about the lives of these two women (especially William Holtz’s biography of Lane, The Ghost in the Little House) are already familiar with this story, but in A Wilder Rose, Susan Wittig Albert casts it as a no
...more
``Laurie Henderson
I'm a little sad and disappointed after reading this book. First off I did enjoy learning all about Rose Wilder Lane, the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder the author of the Little House Books.

The author's premise is that Rose did most of the writing of the Little House Books; while Laura just wrote down her memories with Rose editing and expanding upon them.
The author was not content with stopping there though and continues on to present Rose as the much put upon daughter of LIW who was portraye
...more
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Laura Ingalls Wilder, a name most of probably recognize, either becomes of her books, or the TV-series, or both. Ingalls Wilder is probably one of the most known children author thanks to her fictional retelling of her childhood. But, what not many people know is that without her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane is it a strong possibility that the never would have been any books.

Susan Wittig Albert has written a book about Rose Wilder Lane life and how it came to be that she ghostwrote the Laura Ingal
...more
Clif Hostetler
This book is a novelized biography of Rose Wilder Lane, the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder who is the credited author of the Little House on the Prairie series of children's books. Over time critics and historians have come to believe that Rose's involvement in helping her mother write the Little House series exceeded that of editor, that in reality Rose filled the role of what would generally be considered "ghostwriter." My interest of this controversy is what prompted me to read this boo ...more
Becky Harris
Mar 26, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was pretty awful. I read that Albert self-published because, in her words, "publishers were afraid fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder would be too upset by the book". (The book takes the stance that Rose Wilder Lane co-authored the Little House books). I think she had to self-publish because it is not well written. There is no character development and the book is a series of " I did this, and then I did that". None of the characters are fleshed out and there is no real plot. Lane is a fascinatin ...more
Mauoijenn
This was a nice book about how the Little House on the Prairie books came about. I remember my mother reading these to my sister and I when we were growing up. It was an interesting to learn Wilder's daughter really shaped the books into what they became. A very good read for fans of Wilder's books. ...more
Rachel Aranda
This was a disappointing read for me, and I'm glad I didn't buy this book like I was planning to. I'm a big fan of both Laura Ingalls Wilder's stories and Rose Wilder Lane's writings. If ghost writing happened at least it was all in the family. This book was just not as well-written as it could be; I can see why publishers didn't want to take her on as a client since it was all so negative. Pretty much all the characters were shown in their worst light. Honestly I wonder if Ms. Wittig Albert too ...more
Whitney
I loved Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House series growing up. Twenty years later, I still set aside time for Hallmark's Little House on the Prairie Marathons and am just as enraptured by her books as I was at age eight. It recently came out the Laura's daughter Rose may have been the steamroller behind the writing. Between my nostalgic love and curiosity by this new snippet of information the novel, A Wilder Rose grabbed my interest.

During a rewrite of By the Shores of Silver Lake Rose takes th
...more
Ann
Jun 21, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A must-read for anyone who, like many of my generation, was obsessed with the Little House series before it became a TV juggernaut. Just as the books are a fictionalized account of Laura's childhood, this is a fictionalized account of how the LH books very likely came to be. Is the story true? I can't judge, but after reading Susan Wittig Albert's imagined account, I find myself wanting to read Rose's books, if only to see how they compare the books "written" by her mother. ...more
Alicia Bayer
I read this book with interest since our family lives by Walnut Grove and we are rather immersed in the real history of Laura Ingalls Wilder. The book is a fictionalized account of Rose Wilder (Laura's daughter), mostly during the 1920's and 30's as she came home to her parents' Missouri home and supported them with her writing, eventually helping her mother write the Little House books.

I am not one of those fans who's going to say that Rose didn't do the bulk of the writing of those books, as
...more
Kathleen
Jun 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Susan Wittig Albert has done a masterful work with the two subjects of her book, Laura Ingalls Wilder and her daughter Rose Wilder Lane. It is a novel, but a novel with facts. In her very fine readers companion to A Wilder Rose, Albert says " Writing novels about real people can be a tricky business"

What can be so tricky about it, you might well ask? Laura Ingalls Wilder's stories about a time gone by are now a fabric of our society, part legend and part of our childhood. Let me let Laura hersel
...more
Katherine L
Aug 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Brings William Holtz's academic biography of Rose Wilder Lane to vivid fictional life, telling the story of two strong women who collaborated to develop the "Little House" books.

Like many, I read and re-read the "Little House" books, and believed that they were memoir, not fiction. As I grew older, I happened on bits of debate about the extent to which the stories were exaggerated for dramatic effect, but never seriously questioned the fundamental truth of the stories. I also learned that that L
...more
Sherry Sharpnack
Mar 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this NOVEL about the writing of the “Little House” books, Ms. Albert gives a glossy version of the complicated truth about the actual authorship from Rose Wilder Lane’s viewpoint. Ms. Lane tells this story to an admirer of hers, an aspiring journalist, who helps Ms Lane w/ daily activities at her house in Connecticut in 1939, the eve of the outbreak of WWII. I feel that the jumping back-and-forth from the 1939 interaction to the actual story interrupts the flow of the actual story.

What is the
...more
Kressel Housman
In the Team Laura vs. Team Rose debate, author Susan Wittig Albert is decidedly on Team Rose. Based on William Holtz’s biography The Ghost in the Little House as well as Rose’s journals, she has fictionalized the years in which Rose lived on Rocky Ridge Farm with her aging parents and worked on her mother’s novels. I’d read the Holtz biography, but not the journals, so while the novel seemed accurate based on what I know, much of it seemed like speculation that only the journals can corrobor ...more
Peggy
As a lifelong Little House fan, I found this fascinating, although it paints both Rose and her mother as somewhat unsympathetic. I'm not sure about the extent of the collaboration between Laura and Rose; since this book depicts Rose doing most of the writing, I'm now reading Pamela Smith Hill's LIW biography to sort of balance things out. ...more
Dawn
Feb 15, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of the Little House on the Prairie books.
Recommended to Dawn by: I've always been interested in anything to do with Laura & the Little House books.
An interesting look into Rose Wilder Lane's years living back at Rocky Ridge and her role in helping her mother write the Little House on the Prairie books. I learned some interesting facts about the interesting life that Rose led, her political beliefs and the many articles and books she wrote. This book did show Laura Ingalls Wilder in a different light than I imagined her to be. I did have to keep reminding myself that the Laura portrayed in the beloved tv show, as the rest of the show & its ...more
Sue
Dec 30, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: booksiveread
What did I think? It was an interesting novel about 10 years in Rose Wilder Lane's life, the years that she moved her parents into a house that she built for them so she could take over the family farm house, where she could write and entertain her female friends. There is an air of mystery around Rose's relationship with her friend Troub -- I kept thinking of the relationship between Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok. (Oh, wouldn't Rose the Roosevelt Hater love that comparison.)

The focus of
...more
Lori
I read this book on my kindle. this is about Rose Wilder Lane and her famous mother, Laura Ingalls Wilder. it mostly follows the life of Rose wilder Lane. she was a known writer. who often was a ghost writer for famous celebrities and other authors. it has been rumored for years that Rose Lane helped write her mother Laura ingalls Wilder with her famous children' books about her life growing up as a pioneer girl. Laura was known to tell stories about her childhood and was encouraged to write abo ...more
Jacqie
Apr 27, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

And honestly? This is a book that felt like a very rough cut. I've read a bit of Susan Wittig Albert before, and while her mysteries aren't my cup of tea, I had no reason to doubt her writing ability. Like most women who grew up in my generation, I've got a bit of a soft spot for the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder ( or by Rose Wilder Lane?) and so I was interested to read some background about how the book
...more
Jeanette
Jul 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I never read the Little House books and barely watched the tv show growing up but of course, Laura Ingalls Wilder is an icon of children's literature. Who knew that her daughter was more of the driving force behind the books, which won an incredible number of awards? Albert has used in-depth research to tell a story steeped in historical facts. The relationship between Rose and Laura hit a little too close to home; mothers and daughters are often competitors. Rose's life had so many interesting ...more
Sarah
Jun 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like many a young girl, I treasured the classic historical novels of Laura Ingalls Wilder. I used to read the books over and over, captivated by the descriptions of American frontier life, the optimistic themes of family togetherness and survival amid challenging circumstances, and the appealing character of spunky Laura, the author’s younger self.

And, like many other children, I had read the final book, The First Four Years, with a sense of puzzlement. It lacked the sparkle of the others. The h
...more
Erin
Jun 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....

I was eight when I read the Little House books. My mother gave me a full set of hard covers and we read them aloud. From time to time I've revisited the material, picking up a biography I happened across or checking out one of the My First Little House Books for my own daughter. I love these stories but even so, I wasn't entirely sold on reading Susan Wittig Albert's A Wilder Rose.

I'd never read the author before so I knew t
...more
Umm
Aug 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I admit, I approached this book with some trepidation, being a diehard Laura Ingalls Wilder/Little House fan. Like millions of other girls, I wanted to be, if not Laura herself, then her best friend, sharing in her adventures as well as the many times of love and laughter she shared with her close knit family. That being said, though, it never bothered me overmuch when I read that she may not have written the books totally on her own. It was the spirit of the girl in the stories that I loved, an ...more
Beth
Oct 07, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-on-kindle
This book is about the writing and publishing of the "Little House on The Prairie" books that like so many other little girls, I read and loved. Supposedly written by Laura Ingalls Wilder, it turns out that the books were pretty much rewritten by her daughter Rose although this was not publically known at the time.

Although this aspect of the story was interesting, what I found much more interesting was the time period in which this book takes place - in the 1920s through the late 1930s. Rose Wil
...more
Melissa McCauley
Like so many American girls, I grew up a rabid fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books (despite the cheesy television series). Over the years, I read many books about Laura, and begged my long-suffering husband to detour on road-trips so that I could make pilgrimages to Laura’s houses. (You’re a saint, honey!) But I never knew much about Rose (and frankly wasn’t that interested… she didn’t bring in the whole woodpile during a blizzard)

I wondered why the literary style of “The First Four Years” was s
...more
Latisha Bramlett
Mar 23, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf, netgalley
I marked this as a DNF for several reasons. I never seemed to get into the story. I found the writing to be choppy and uninteresting. It didn't flow very well. Also, I just couldn't get behind Rose as a character. In just about everything I've read about her, she comes across as a spoiled brat. She talks about needing money, but she is always blowing it on more houses, clothes, or other things she does not need. She also acts like she is the one completing supporting her parents. She acts like t ...more
LeahBethany
I really wanted to like this book as I loved the "Little House" books growing up. I had a hard time engaging with the story from the beginning as the movement of the story felt contrived. Rose Wilder tells her story because a friend keeps asking about it. These breaks in the narrative to the "present" day to ask more questions did not add anything to the story; I wish the author had just stayed in the past. Also, I felt that there were a lot of repetitions in the book; or maybe it was just Rose ...more
Diann
Aug 18, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, own, dnf_17
I found the premise of the book to be fascinating. However, I could not finish this book. I found it laborious and confusing to read. Disappointingly, there was nothing that was able to draw me into the novel.
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Susan is the author/co-author of biographical/historical fiction, mysteries, and nonfiction. Now in her 80s and continuing to write, she says that retirement is not (yet) an option. She publishes under her own imprint. Here are her latest books.

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