Wednesday, May 5, 2010

dear laura: letters to laura ingalls wilder

We love going to secondhand bookstores. There's something very satisfying about the thrill of the hunt, the smugness of the bargain, and of course, the joy of discovering things long out of print.

There are quite a few good ones around the L.A. area, although you really do have to go outside of the city proper to find ones that aren't extremely specialized. This weekend we were in Dave's Olde Bookshop in Redondo Beach and Book Again in Torrance, where I snatched up a hardcover copy of Dear Laura: Letters from Children to Laura Ingalls Wilder for the embarrassingly low price of $5.00.

Laura began writing down her memories and stories late in life, and to her great pleasure, her books were received with an outpouring of enthusiasm from children and adults alike. She received many, many letters from her fans and kept a fair number of them in her personal belongings, and a nice selection of them are presented in this volume.

My favorites include poems written on lined school paper, valentines adorned with stickers and doilies, crayoned drawings of scenes from her books, and one enterprising teacher who even had her students fill a whole autograph album with messages for their beloved author.

I believe the book is out of print, but still available through libraries and secondhand dealers. It's a treasure for anyone who loves Laura, or who appreciates the charm of written correspondence.


  1. SUCH a treasure -- lucky you! My daughter loves Laura's books ... enjoy!

  2. I love Laura, too! It's so nice to read how she's inspired other readers.

  3. OH what a treasure!! I didn't even know something like this existed! So neat.

  4. I really like that people have expanded on the Little House world. I just bought The World of Little House book this weekend at a secondhand bookstore...a really great one as well! Full of great crafts from the books, as well as interesting information about Laura's life that isn't found in the books. I'll share some photos from that one soon.


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