Our Recommended Reading for Children & Young Adults and Recommended Reading for Adults articles have been popular resources for readers interested in Laura Ingalls Wilder and Little House on the Prairie. Here is a brief overview of Young Pioneers.
Author: Rose Wilder Lane
Illustrator: Dan Andreasen
Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (September 5, 1998)
Newlyweds Molly and David are only sixteen and eighteen years old when they pack up their wagon and head west across the plains in search of a new homestead. At first their new life is full of promise: The wheat is high, the dugout is warm and cozy, and a new baby is born to share in their happiness. Then disaster strikes, and David must go east for the winter to find work. Molly is left alone with the baby — with nothing but her own courage to face the dangers of the harsh prairie winter.
About the Author: Rose Wilder Lane
Rose Wilder Lane (1886-1968), was a prolific fiction writer, biographer and political theorist, as well as the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of the Little House series of children’s books. Lane’s skillful editing and publishing connections assisted her mother in making the transition from rural Ozark journalist to world-renowned children’s author. Lane had left her parent’s impoverished Missouri farm at the age of 17 and soon began to make her mark on the world. After a stint as a Western Union telegrapher, she sold real estate in California and later began a successful career as a reporter for the San Francisco Bulletin. Her 1918 divorce from Gillette Lane, after several years of separation, officially ended a relationship that had never recovered from the death of an infant son around 1910. She never remarried. After her divorce, Lane continued to carve out a successful career as a writer of novels, short stories, biographies and tales of her extensive world travels. Her work as a war correspondent dated from post-WWI Europe to a tour of Vietnam in 1965 (when she was nearly 80 years old). She was a well-known literary figure of her day. Later in life, Lane’s writing focused on her increasing political conservatism, her distaste of Communism, Socialism and any other form of government that denied the freedom of the individual. She is widely regarded as one of the leading figures behind what has grown into the American Libertarian Party. Among her many works are Free Land, Young Pioneers, Diverging Roads, and Give Me Liberty.
About the Illustrator: Dan Andreasen
Dan Andreasen has illustrated many well-loved books for children, including River Boy: The Story of Mark Twain and Pioneer Girl: The Story of Laura Ingalls Wilder, both by William Anderson. He lives with his family in Medina, Ohio.
Pick up your own copy of Young Pioneers here.