Little Flophouse on the Prairie

After 80 years in publishing limbo, Laura Ingalls Wilder’s grownup memoirs are finally available:

Wilder’s Pioneer Girl, the story of her childhood, was begun by the author in 1930, when she was in her early 60s, but was rejected by editors at the time. It contains stories omitted from her novels, tales that Wilder herself felt “would not be appropriate” for children, such as her family’s sojourn in the town of Burr Oak, where she once saw a man became so drunk that, when he lit a cigar, the whisky fumes on his breath ignited and killed him instantly. In another recollection, a shopkeeper drags his wife around by her hair, pours kerosene on the floor of his house, and sets their bedroom on fire.


This is why I gave up smoking.


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