The First Four Years (Little House Series: Classic Stories #9)

The First Four Years (Little House Series: Classic Stories #9)

Paperback(Full Color Collector's Editon)

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The ninth and final book in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s classic Little House series.

Laura Ingalls Wilder is beginning life with her new husband, Almanzo, in their own little house. Laura is a young pioneer wife now, and must work hard with Almanzo, farming the land around their home on the South Dakota prairie. Soon their baby daughter, Rose, is born, and the young family must face the hardships and triumphs encountered by so many American pioneers.

And so Laura Ingalls Wilder's adventure as a little pioneer girl ends, and her new life as a pioneer wife and mother begins.

The nine books in the timeless Little House series tell the story of Laura’s childhood as an American pioneer, and are cherished by readers of all generations. They offer a unique glimpse into life on the American frontier, and tell the heartwarming, unforgettable story of a loving family.

Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780060581886
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 05/11/2004
Series: Little House Series
Edition description: Full Color Collector's Editon
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 32,801
Product dimensions: 5.12(w) x 7.62(h) x 0.00(d)
Lexile: 1030L (what's this?)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Laura Ingalls Wilder (1867–1957) was born in a log cabin in the Wisconsin woods. With her family, she pioneered throughout America’s heartland during the 1870s and 1880s, finally settling in Dakota Territory. She married Almanzo Wilder in 1885; their only daughter, Rose, was born the following year. The Wilders moved to Rocky Ridge Farm at Mansfield, Missouri, in 1894, where they established a permanent home. After years of farming, Laura wrote the first of her beloved Little House books in 1932. The nine Little House books are international classics. Her writings live on into the twenty-first century as America’s quintessential pioneer story.

Garth Williams is the renowned illustrator of almost one hundred books for children, including the beloved Stuart Little by E. B. White, Bedtime for Frances by Russell Hoban, and the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

He was born in 1912 in New York City but raised in England. He founded an art school near London and served with the British Red Cross Civilian Defense during World War II. Williams worked as a portrait sculptor, art director, and magazine artist before doing his first book Stuart Little, thus beginning a long and lustrous career illustrating some of the best known children's books.

In addition to illustrating works by White and Wilder, he also illustrated George Selden’s The Cricket in Times Square and its sequels (Farrar Straus Giroux). He created the character and pictures for the first book in the Frances series by Russell Hoban (HarperCollins) and the first books in the Miss Bianca series by Margery Sharp (Little, Brown). He collaborated with Margaret Wise Brown on her Little Golden Books titles Home for a Bunny and Little Fur Family, among others, and with Jack Prelutsky on two poetry collections published by Greenwillow: Ride a Purple Pelican and Beneath a Blue Umbrella. He also wrote and illustrated seven books on his own, including Baby Farm Animals (Little Golden Books) and The Rabbits’ Wedding (HarperCollins).

Date of Birth:

February 7, 1867

Date of Death:

February 10, 1957

Place of Birth:

Pepin, Wisconsin

Place of Death:

Mansfield, Missouri

Customer Reviews

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First Four Years 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 34 reviews.
InTheBookcase More than 1 year ago
I believe that book #9 of the Little House series is actually my favorite. It's the last one, and it shows how Laura and Almanzo "get together". Such a sweet story! I so enjoyed learning about the first years of their marriage, and how they barely scraped by, yet loved each other through it all. I wish the Little House series didn't have to end here! After finishing "The First Four Years" I found myself now desiring to find out more about Laura's life beyond what she penned in her books. I hope to locate some biographies and do some historical research on this someday.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The first four years is about Laura Ingals a 19 girl who got married to Almazo Wilder. They had a child named Rose Wilder. Laura and Almanzo get very sick. Almanzo gets so sick that he was paralized for a little while. then on top of that their house burned down. If you want to finish the book you have to read it yourself. I recomend this book. I recomend this book because it is funny in some parts. And it is sad in some parts.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This story shows the hard times of living on the prarie.Laura Ingalls Wilder is the best children's author that I have ever read.She tells of her life with such grace. Her former books were out of this world but for some reason this book flew by to fast.It starts out with her marriage to Almonzo Wilder and moves on to tell about her new daughter Rose and all the hardships that occured the first four years being married. If you haven't read the Little House books I encourage you to read them.Reading these books will stay with you forever.
rainbowdarling on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The last book typically included in the Little House series is the least like the others. As it was never edited, it lacks the polish that the other books have, and is more frank than any of the others about some of the harder aspects of life for the young Wilder family. It deals with drought and hard weather, plagues, disease and debt. Laura and Almanzo deal with a lot in that first four years of their married life, trying to make things thrive on their claim in De Smet four the three year trial of farming (stretched to four for a 'grace' period). Despite some of the positive things that happen for them in this book, this is definitely the saddest of the series. It is good, but not something that I could see myself going back to when I want something sweet and light-hearted.
mrsarey on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The story of Almanzo and Laura in their first four years of marriage, including the birth of Rose and the death of their son.
Twilight123 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
See your favorite little girl grow up to be a mother of a growing family. The last book in the Laura series.
hello.kitty on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
this is an easy read and was fun to read
amerynth on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The final book in the series follows the first four years of Laura and Almanzo's marriage and the birth of their daughter Rose, as they try to make a living as farmers on the prairie. Published long after both Laura and Rose had died, it lacked the polish of a finished book (and possibly the editing that Rose helped out with in the earlier books.)
silversurfer on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
And with this book, the american classic story comes to an end. I found great pleasure in reading these wonderful books and will treasure Laura's epic family saga.
pandoragreen on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The prose is unpolished, and it is quite clear that Wilder was not finished with this manuscript. In comparison with her early works, it falls flat. However I am VERY glad that they went ahead and published this "unfinished" work. It was a delight following up on what happened to Laura after the last book in the Little House series. There are some very amusing and tender scenes to be found within. Overall, a delightful insight into another time and place.
quaintlittlehead on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wilder did not finish revising this story for publication before her death, and it has a slightly different flavour than the other books in her series. It starts out with the story of her marriage that was described in "These Happy Golden Years," but without much embellishment and with a focus on Laura's worry about the struggles of marrying a farmer. The remainder of this novel lays bare the raw emotion that Laura must have experienced in coming to grips with her new adult life as a wife and mother during a series of economic trials, stripping away the fairy tale of "happily ever after" marriage and motherhood. While my life experiences have been completely different, I could totally relate my feelings on living on my own for the first time with what Laura was going through. This is a brutally honest portrayal of what pioneer life was really like; it lacks the polish of the other books in the Little House series, along with their sense that, thanks in part to Ma and Pa, everything would always be all right, but it displays the strength of character and attitude that must have characterised struggling farmers at the time, and perhaps still does to this day.
MerryMary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The style and rhythm of this book is slightly different from the rest of the series. At her death, Laura left it handwritten and unfinished. It was printed as is, without final revising and polishing. The story of the first years of marriage for Laura and Almanzo is a fitting conclusion to a much loved series, told with love and courage.
wordygirl39 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Rose Wilder Lane (Laura and Almanzo's daughter) cobbled this manuscript together from her mother's notebooks after her death. This is a diary, really, beginning with the wedding we read in These Happy Golden Years to the family's leaving Dakota for Missouri. I hated this book as a child--hated it. I felt cheated out of my happy ending! You see right from the start that though Laura and Almanzo cared for each other, they were just going to have a lot of problems. Many reviewers and historians of pioneer literature have written about the women who took on the frontier and how they, and not the men, were really the strongest players. Laura, like Cather, Jewett, Aldrich, and Rolvaag, shows us in this book the terrible cost of that life and the strength of the women who could survive it and even thrive. But this isn't a fun book to read.
Crowyhead on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I always loved this one when I was a kid, even though it's rather sad at the end. What sitcks out in my mind is the joy of the beginning of the novel, and the beautiful house Almanzo built for Laura.
Hamburgerclan on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is the last of the "Little House" series, chronicling the first four years of Mrs. Wilder's marriage. Actually, it was an unfinished manuscript that was published over a decade after her death. As such, it reads less like a novel and more like a fleshed out plotline. The previous "Little House" books tend to flow better and tend to carry a sense of optimism about them. "The First Four Years", in contrast, is rather depressing. Whereas in the previous novels, Almanzo Wilder comes across as a capable, resourceful man, in this book he's quite the nebbish, full of unwarranted optimism. Nothing against nebbishes, but I'm wondering why the change. Perhaps if Mrs. Wilder had finished the book, the character would have been more recognizable. Or maybe it's just that we're finally getting a look at the real Almanzo. Who knows? Anyway, if you've made it this far in the series, you'll want to check out "The First Four Years" to see what happens. And then you'll grumble that nobody wrote about the next four years.--J.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hate this !#@%&#*!@/^!#@%&* book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
That was the best book ever.Beleve me
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