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A Little House Sampler: A Collection of Early Stories and Reminiscenses

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  3,788 ratings  ·  73 reviews
For everyone who loves the Little House books--a reissue of a charming collection of early stories and reminiscences by Laura Ingalls Wilder, along with essays and writings from her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, who was an award-winning writer. This charming collection of early stories contains many never before published newspaper pieces, stories and essays by Laura Ingalls ...more
Paperback, 243 pages
Published April 14th 1995 by Harper Perennial (first published 1988)
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Average rating 4.21  · 
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 ·  3,788 ratings  ·  73 reviews

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Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
In the South Dakotan room of the Huron Public Library, along with other 'Wilder' books, such as the novels of Laura's daughter, Rose. This is a great book for Laura fans like me! Full of essays/articles/speeches/short stories from these amazing pioneering women, Laura and Rose, who was a successful author (and feminist!) in the early 1900's, and also was the one to help and encourage her mother into writing.

As Laura said to her fans in Michigan (Oct. 16, 1937), "..I began to think what a wonder
Amy Flink
Apr 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book was sooo wonderful, It gave me goosebumps. I loved the Little House Books by Laura Ingalls Wilder and so I loved reading more about them. You won't be sorry reading this, I guarentee! It is full of beautiful photographs of the Ingalls and Wilders and wonderful stories and writings by Laura and Rose. One of my favorites is "Faces in the Window", Rose's account of a chilling tale her odd friend Gladys tells her. It is truly a bizarre tale! Normally I don't care for ghost stories; they ar ...more
Jun 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Intriguing non-fiction from both mother and daughter as well as a few short fictions (previously published in magazines) by Rose.
I found it fascinating to read of the early shared life and the subsequently dichotomous paths that lead to such similarities in mother and daughter.

I was amazed at what Laura did in the 50 years AFTER her 40th birthday.

Did you know the first of the "Little House" series wasn't published until she was over 60???

What did YOU do today to make a dream come true or change
Feb 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Found myself in the unthinkable position of finishing a library book and having nothing on deck. Pulled this off the shelf for a re-read and I'm spellbound. The stories are deeply affecting, Laura's spirit is inspiring. I'm savoring every page.

OK- amended from 5 to 4 stars. The first section of the book was the most compelling for me, the stories that parallel the "Little House" books. I drifted a bit during the later stories & Rose's work. However, the tale of Laura, Almanzo, and Rose's final n
Skipped around and skimmed this one. The goal was to compare the differences in writing style between verified Laura writings and verified Rose writings. Rose wrote a short fictional story entitled "Innocence" in 1922 that was similar in tone to the Little House canon (but a LOT more unsettling; the uncle marries some crazy Seminole woman who tries to kill the little-girl protagonist).

Rose didn't know Pa very well; she didn't see him after she was 7 and he died not terribly long after that.

I als
Sep 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
A wonderful chance to read a more factual version of these famous authors lives. Some of these have been reprinted in other Forms, but this one seems to have had the most variety of writings. This is my favorite collection of their writings outside of the actual little house books. These two women have a marvelous voice and it's a shame more people don't think the way they did these days. If so, I think we would be more self sufficient and strong country. These are definitely worth a study. ...more
Jul 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: "Little House" fanatics
Recommended to Rory by: Shelley
Shelves: kids, nonfiction
Pictures you've never seen before! More reasons to just not like Rose! Better feel for Laura's late-life growth as an author! A more clear idea of how to actually twist hay into knots for fuel!

[Hee, I hope I marked the right Shelley in the "who recommended this book" line--I have three GoodReads friends without last names included and the drop-down menu doesn't show the pix!:]
Oct 04, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2011
I like the variety of pieces here from both Laura and Rose. I came away thinking that the "Ghost in the Little House" thought that Rose was a ghostwriter for Laura, isn't quite as solid when you read more of Laura's work. ...more
Jul 13, 2015 rated it liked it
Since this was a bunch of stories and essays written by two different people it was kinda hard to rate. Some of them were really good and others were really boring. It was nice to hear about Laura'a life outside the books though. ...more
Lori Cooper
Jul 23, 2014 rated it liked it
Good. Yet more information into the wonderful world of the wonderful Laura Ingalls Wilder!
Elizabeth Meadows
Jan 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have an old audio copy of this on cassette that I have listened to multiple times. The story that stands out to me is a creepy story that was written by Rose. Every time I think of it, I get chills.
These are articles that Laura wrote for farm magazines, years before she started her "Little House" series. Her advice is practical, and always helpful. What an encouraging woman she must have been, such hard work done with such cheerful aplomb! ...more
May 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I am currently reading this book and so far I'm loving it so much. It definitely adds to my thirst for more of Laura and her family. I love Laura's daughter Rose too. It just amazes me though that her book is not as available as Laura's are when she was a famous author before her mother was. As a matter of fact she was the one who persuaded and encouraged her mother to write. She was the one who said to her, "For goodness sake, write! There is no reason you should not be making more money!" I lo ...more
Jul 13, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder
I enjoyed reading more stories written by Laura Ingalls Wilder in this collection of her shorter writings, such as columns she wrote for farming newspapers, and also some of her daughter’s writings. One interesting part is where she tells a few stories that she did not include in Little House on the Prairie because they were not appropriate for children.

Here are 2 quotes I particularly liked:

“We are so inclined to take for granted the blessings we possess and to look for something peculiar, som
Aug 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: california
This book was in the Biography section beside several other Wilder biographies. I'm lucky I chose this one. Not only did it give a timeline of events in Laura and her daughter, Rose's lives, but it also included their magazine articles, short stories, and speeches. Comparing the two women's' writing styles side-by-side was a treat. These two independent, strong women have incredibly different writing styles and any run of the mill biography would not have accurately portrayed this fact.

Jaime K
May 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a fascinating compilation of articles, talks, and letters that were not published before 1988 and mostly haven't made their way into other works since. It's mostly chronological by date of events, not publication. Thus, Anderson has created a near-seamless chain of events that string Laura's pioneer days with Rose's city adventures. So it is very interesting to see just how life, particularly in the country, changed.
REALLY changed, not just through the eyes of fiction, but through the w
penny shima glanz
Jul 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: women
A recent trip found me at Wall Drugs in South Dakota, an interesting shop with a surprisingly (to me) amazing and impressive book selection. While there I picked up A Little House Sampler by Laura Ingalls Wilder and Rose Wilder Lane. I wasn't planning on buying any books over this short break, but this one just begged me to take it home (it was on sale and that small fact broke my resolve). It turned into perfect vacation reading. It is a selection of early stories and articles by both Laura and ...more
Jul 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, youth
This was really fun and interesting. My favorite parts were the bits that augment what we learned in the books - chapters and stories she didn't tell because they weren't as kid friendly, for example, or the picture of a twist of hay from The Long Winter. I also loved Rose's recollections of their time in DeSmet, since she spent her days with Ma and the girls while Laura worked. So interesting, especially learning that Ma and Pa had the most ambitions for Mary of all their children, and were nev ...more
Dec 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Rereading the Little House series with Z, N and M right now, and enjoying it so much -- every bit as much as I did when I was 8 -- that I decided to pick this up to do some backfilling -- to get even more. Just as the books themselves manage with great simplicity and directness to impress themselves upon the heart, so do these short excerpts from things Laura wrote for her local newspaper; speeches she gave; diaries she kept; and notes and stories Rose wrote based on stories Laura told her. (Int ...more
Jennifer Heise
A surprisingly enjoyable collection of paired Laura Ingalls Wilder's and Rose Wilder Lane's short works, letters and notes, with introductions and annotations by William Anderson. The book is very respectful of both of them, soft-pedalling the known conflicts between mother and daughter, and Rose's claims that she did a great deal of the work on the books (probably because the finished pieces show that Laura was a good writer in her own right), and also not referencing Wilder Lane's strong Liber ...more
Michele Runde
Oct 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
When I was growing up, I loved the Little House series. Now I'm taking a class about the Writing Life of Laura Ingalls Wilder. It is an amazing peek back with great affection at the impact her books had on my childhood. At the same time, it sorts out the "true" facts and what was "true" to share what life was like so that readers could be in the moment as well. "A Little House Sampler" is just that. There are bits and pieces that Laura and her daughter wrote over the years. Photographs are tucke ...more
Apr 17, 2008 rated it really liked it
Anyone who liked the Little House books should enjoy this collection of writings by Laura Ingalls Wilder and her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane. Interestingly, during their lifetimes, Rose was the much more well known of the two and her writing is the much better. One story in particular, Innocence, is just wonderful--complex, compelling, and more than a little scary.

Rose's memories of her early years, with Ma and Pa and the aunts around, is bittersweet. After Laura and Almanzo left DeSmet when Ros
Aug 08, 2009 rated it really liked it
When my daughter was a child, we read the entire Little House series together. This book tells the rest of the story. The biographical material about Laura Ingalls Wilder, Almanzo, and their daughter Rose, is expertly interwoven with excellent writings by both Laura and Rose, who became a nationally recognized writer. After reading "Object, Matrimony", Rose's short story included in this book, I can't wait to get my hands on "Free Land", Rose's 1938 best seller. I would also love to visit her mu ...more
May 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
This little gem gives a nice history of Laura and Rose, beyond what you already know from the Little House books. Using writings from both authoresses, you are taken back to the well loved sites from the Little House books to the home on Rocky Ridge. You get to see a bit of Rose's spice and more of Laura's warmth.

I loved this book. It opened up more of a person I have already loved from her children's series (which I have owned and loved since a girl and am now reading to my children) and allowe
Sep 11, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
I read all of Laura's books when I was old enough to walk to the library myself and loved them. Sometimes I wanted to be growing up on the frontier, be brave and hard-working...These stories fill in some of the details I didn't know about. I love the image of her as a successful author, living on her farm and receiving letters every day from children and teachers, which she answered. She didn't start the Little House books until she was 65 and she was known most of her life as the mother of the ...more
Jan 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was a real treat for a Little House fan who wants to learn what happened after the last book ends. It's a mix of writings by Laura and her daughter Rose. Rose's description of her family's last night with Ma, Pa, Mary, Carrie and Grace before the left for Missouri had me in tears. It was also amazing to read about Almanzo driving his first car. The Ingalls/Wilder's life really did cover such a fascinating span of American history. And this book left me loving Laura even more than befor ...more
Jul 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved reading this book, which is about Laura Ingalls Wilder and her daughter Rose Wilder Lane. The editor, William Anderson includes many of the stories that were not told in the Laura Ingalls Wilder books. I did not know that her daughter Rose, was the famous writer, and world wide traveler, and it was Rose that encouraged Laura to write about her prairie experiences. This book makes me want to visit all the places that Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote about. I've been to the Burr Oak hotel many y ...more
Aug 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I am so happy I finally read this. It was a phenomenal book and a must read for any Little House fan. I learned so much about Laura and Rose that the series left out and so much about Laura's later years. I enjoyed reading some of Rose's stories for the first time. I would like to seek out more of her works. I can't give enough praise for this book! It discusses so many of Laura's relationships with her family members in depth and offers very detailed information about pioneer life. Glad I own t ...more
Aug 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
I found this tucked away in the children's section of my public library, next to the Little House books themselves. I think it should have been, at a minimum, shelved in the YA section. It was a great selection of Laura Ingalls Wilder's and Rose Wilder Lane's essays, short fiction, and magazine features, with wonderful biographical tidbits to give each piece context. Any Laura fan who wants more of her without going for a full-on biography would benefit from this book. If you're curious about Ro ...more
Nov 20, 2008 rated it it was ok
Pretty slow, but if you want to find out a little more about Laura Ingalls Wilder (I confess, I was a bit addicted to her for a short while), then there's some more stories and background and what happened after the end of the Little House books. But yeah, I skimmed quite a bit.

There's also a lot about her daughter, Rose, and some short stories by her. There was one short story called 'Matrimony' or something of the sort that I thought was so funny.
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William Anderson is an American author, historian and lecturer. He is a specialist in the subject of Laura Ingalls Wilder and her times.

His interest in American frontier began after reading Little House on the Prairie. He is a director of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Home and Museum in Mansfield, Missouri, and he lives and works as a teacher in Michigan.

Librarian’s note: There is more than one author

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