Sunday, February 03, 2008

On the Banks of Plum Creek

Wilder, Laura Ingalls. 1937. On the Banks of Plum Creek.

The dim wagon track went no farther on the prairie, and Pa stopped the horses. When the wagon wheels stopped turning, Jack dropped down in the shade between them. His belly sank on the grass and his front legs stretched out. His nose fitted in the furry hollow. All of him rested, except his ears.

On The Bank of Plum Creek opens when the Ingalls family arrives at their new home. They have bought a place, and their first new "home" is a dugout. They are buying it from a Norwegian man, Mr. Hanson, who is moving further west I presume. This is just temporary. Charles (or "Pa" as he's referred to so often it's hard not to join in) has promised to build them a real house, a real home just as soon as he can. The book opens with promises and hopes and dreams. But most of the book will see those hopes and dreams delayed. What Pa needs--what they all need--are good crops, good wheat crops. What Pa gets is grasshoppers. The Ingalls family does struggle a bit in On The Banks of Plum Creek. But they do settle in and get comfortable. Mary and Laura, for instance, start school. It is the first time for them to ever attend school. And they do meet up with some town folks like Nellie Oleson.

Overall, this is a more than enjoyable read. Some of my favorite chapters are "Nellie Oleson," "Town Party," "Country Party," "Going to Church," and "Surprise."

It is 339 pages.


Les said...

Oh, what a great post. I loved, loved, loved this series when I was a young girl. I have the whole set in our guest room and frequently think I should re-read each and every one. I had hoped my daughter would read them when she was little, but she didn't have any interest in them. She's now 24 and I wonder if she'll ever want to read them. I may just have to save them for my granddaughter to read with me!

wonderlandchick said...

I haven't read this entire series, but I did read "On the Banks of Plum Creek" in elementary school. I picked it because I loved the title. Plum Creek sounded like a friendly sort of place to be!

Anonymous said...

This is great book and I am reading it to my daughter one chapter per night. However, tonight when we got to chapter 21, 'Going to Church', it stopped and went back to page 117! Pages 181 through 212 are all missing and replced with second copes of pages 117 through 148. We will have to check the book out from the library to finish it.

Anonymous said...

Just found your site - I am reading this for the second time as I re-read the series. Will take time to explore your site thoroughly over the holidays - have a wonderful Christmas and New Year!