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The World of Laura Ingalls Wilder: The Frontier Landscapes that Inspired the Little House Books

By Marta McDowell

This well-researched, sweeping book details the life of Laura Ingalls Wilder and those who came before her.

Patricia MacLachlan, author of Sarah, Plain and Tall, winner of the Newbery Medal

A must-read companion to the Little House books.

2017 is the 150th anniversary of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s birthday. Her beloved Little House series tells a classic coming-of-age story based on Wilder’s own family life and is a reflection of the pioneer spirit of the time. They are also deeply rooted in the natural world. The plants, animals, and landscapes are so integral to the stories, they are practically their own characters.

The World of Laura Ingalls Wilder, by New York Times bestselling author Marta McDowell, explores Wilder’s deep relationship to the landscape. Follow the wagon trail of the series, starting in the Wisconsin setting of Little House in the Big Woods to the Dakotas and finally to Missouri. Throughout, you’ll learn details about Wilder’s life and inspirations, discover how to visit the real places today, and even learn to grow the plants and vegetables featured in the stories.

The artful package includes original illustrations by Helen Sewell and Garth Williams, along with historical and contemporary photographs. The World of Laura Ingalls Wilder is a must-have treasure for the millions of readers enchanted by Laura’s wild and beautiful life.

Media reviews

"[With] ample descriptions of scenery in the series ... Marta McDowell provides a snapshot of the gardens, plants and land that influenced Laura Ingalls Wilder's frontier life in the Little House books."

Shelf Awareness

"Lavishly illustrated with photographs, drawings, maps, and, notably, a selection of Helen Sewell and Garth Williams’ illustrations from the Little House books.…The book is a feast of opportunity for dedicated Wilder fans and enthusiastic gardeners everywhere."

Booklist

"Readers who fondly remember Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House books will delight in this biography.…​A well-researched, beautifully illustrated title that entwines the natural world depicted in Wilder’s books with her life as a settler, farmer, and writer."

Library Journal

"Like the ‘Little House’ books themselves, [this is] a story of a slice of garden history, and an evolving American landscape of the imprint the pioneers had on it, and it had on them too. A tale of their intimate connection with the natural world, and of what McDowell calls Laura’s wild and beautiful life."

A Way to Garden

"McDowell commemorates the 150th birthday of Laura Ingalls Wilder with a captivating look at the beloved Little House on the Prairie author’s relationship with nature.…​McDowell’s warm descriptions of the author, her times, and the plants she loved provide a wonderful companion to Wilder’s books, while instructions on growing a Little House–inspired garden add an interactive component. Gardeners, botanists, and fans of Wilder will love this book."

Publishers Weekly

"A lively, detailed look at Wilder's plant, farm and garden interests in the many places she lived."

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

About the author

Marta McDowell

Marta McDowell lives, gardens, and writes in Chatham, New Jersey. She teaches landscape history and horticulture at the New York Botanical Garden, where she studied landscape design. McDowell also consults for public gardens and private clients. Her particular interest is in authors and their gardens, the connection between the pen and the trowel.

Read more about Marta McDowell

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$27.95 $19.57

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