LITTLE CLEARING IN THE WOODS by Maria D. Wilkes

LITTLE CLEARING IN THE WOODS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The family of Laura Ingalls Wilder is marketed practically to death with the appearance of another entry in the Little House/The Caroline Years series: Caroline, Laura's mother, is a child moving with her family to the Wisconsin woods. Wilkes is less concerned with characterization than in getting the family from one place to another, and settled in their new home. A description of their disastrous first crop is quickly followed by a solution to their threat of hunger. Hints of the characters' qualities peek through, as when Caroline wonders if ""some new person"" is ""stuck inside"" her increasingly fastidious sister. A flash of an argument between them brings the book temporarily to life, but it quickly settles back into a carefully planned script, charting a path from the move until the courtship of Caroline's mother, a widow. It's a genial volume, but can't hold a candle to Wilder's vividly evoked pioneer days, nor even to Roger Lea MacBride's Little House episodes about Rose Wilder (Little Farm in the Ozarks, 1994, etc.).

Pub Date: April 30th, 1998
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: HarperCollins