Clare (who is three) loved Little House in the Big Woods. She has not been as excited about Little House on the Prairie. About a third of the way through the book, she declared it boring and begged us to stop reading it. Meg quite liked the book so I told Clare she could pick a picture book to read each night, but then we would read our chapter and she could listen or play quietly. There are differences between the two books that might explain Clare's reaction. While Little House in the Big Woods is full of cozy stories, Little House on the Prairie provides details of how Pa built the house, dug the well and plowed the fields. There's also the conflict with the Indians. The chapter Indian War Cries is amazingly well-written and allows the reader to feel the terror of the settlers night after night as they could hear the Indians debating over whether to go to war with the settlers. That being said, I believe those were the parts Clare most enjoyed--even if they were a little scary.
I grew up on Little House. My mom read us the books. We watched the television show. One year I was Laura Ingalls for Halloween. My family even visited the Wilder's Rocky Ridge Farm. But I honestly did not remember how well-written the books were. The detail is splendid. I have so enjoyed revisiting these books.
Today On the Banks of Plum Creek is set to arrive from Amazon (this is the only book in the series I didn't already have a copy of). Meg and I will keep reading and I hope Clare will join us. We will keep doing some activities related to the book and I will detail some of these on the blog. Stay tuned.