By the Shores of Silver Lake –

The Adventures Of Laura Ingalls And Her Family Continue As They Move From Their Little House On The Banks Of Plum Creek To The Wilderness Of The Unsettled Dakota Territory Here Pa Works On The New Railroad Until He Finds A Homestead Claim That Is Perfect For Their New Little House Laura Takes Her First Train Ride As She, Her Sisters, And Their Mother Come Out To Live With Pa On The Shores Of Silver Lake After A Lonely Winter In The Surveyors House, Pa Puts Up The First Building In What Will Soon Be A Brand New Town On The Beautiful Shores Of Silver Lake The Ingallses Covered Wagon Travels Are Finally Over

10 thoughts on “By the Shores of Silver Lake

  1. says:

    Sniffs Wipes away tear Laura knew then that she was not a little girl any Now she was alone she must take care of herself When you must do that, then you do it and you are grown up. Oh, they grow up so fast, don t they I do wish that this series could stay with Laura as a young girl running around and having adventures with Ma, Pa and her sisters But, Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote this as autobiographical and so her younger self had to grow.Gone are the isolated cabins in Wisconsin and here is the bustling brand new town of DeSmet Laura and her family are living in a town now and with that comes quite a lot of differences The girls have to go to school and behave like little ladies but if you think that will stop Laura from letting loose, then you have another thing coming Told in simple, plain language, this book manages to capture the beauty and the wildness of town life in the late 1800s What a time to be alive Audiobook CommentsRead by Cherry Jones and accompanied by Paul Woodiel on the fiddle absolutely loved it Blog Instagram Twitter

  2. says:

    One of the things I love about this series is how the prose grows with the protagonist Four year old Laura lives in a world with short sentences and simple feelings, and thirteen year old Laura, who has had to broaden her vocabulary to help describe things to her blind sister, inhabits a text that is intricately described and which gives a broader overview of events and situations.

  3. says:

    Alright By the Shores of Silver Lake You ready, Eleanor E Mm hmm.Dad Ok Go for it.E Um Well My favorite paaaarrrrt waaaassssss hmmmmmmm hmmm hmmm hmmm Chapter 8 I thiiiink I think, daddy I think uh My favorite part was when they went out in the shanty, and when they got do you want me to tell you the surprising part that I liked, or the regular part that I liked D Start with the regular part.E My favorite parts were the ones with the littlest sister, Grace Grace was introduced in chapter one One of the first sentences says, Mary, Carrie, and baby Grace Eleanor picked up on a funny thing though They never actually say Grace is their sister This was pretty frustrating for Eleanor, because she wanted to be CERTAIN that it WAS their sister before saying it We talked about it being inferred, but that wasn t good enough for her I had forgotten all about this, even though Eleanor brought it up quite a few times It took all the way until page 180 before it was explicit And there on Ma s lap sat the littlest sister Grace, with her hair the color of sunshine, and eyes as blue as violets When I read that part, El interrupted, shouting out DAD DAD GRACE IS THEIR SISTER Does this mean we don t have to infer any I just read what I wrote to Eleanor E Dad, I didn t mean to interrupt, I was just so surprised and shocked, I couldn t help it.D Yeah, don t worry about it I love it when you get into the story What other parts did you like in the book E I liked when they talked about the Shepherdess, because they hadn t talked about her in a REALLY long time.D Anything else E Something big happened to Mary, Laura, Carrie, Ma, and Pa Men kept coming to their house, because theirs was the only house around And they kept EATING AND EATING AND EATING OH DAD D Yeah E It s the review now, so why do they keep moving and moving and moving D What do you mean E Well, because when we read that book you said not to ask that question, and wait until the review to ask it.D Oh, yeah It s a good question They moved a LOT, didn t they E Yeah Why did they Did Pa like to move or something Why did they keep moving and moving and moving D I think, if I were Ma, I would have been very frustrated about this How many times did they move Do you remember E They moved in Little House on the Prairie, from Wisconsin to the Prairie And then to Independence, Missouri And then to the Creek And to the Wonderful House that was book 5 remember, Farmer Boy wasn t about them.D Yeah, yeah You re right Keep going.E Then, to the Shanty Then to the surveyor s house And then to the one with cracks Then to their claim So, it looks like the one with the surveyors was 6 which means they ve moved 8 times so far.D You are really good at keeping track of this I m not going to fact check you.E What s fact check mean And why are the Big Woods called Wisconsin D I ll get to that later Give me a minute to be impressed with you I would have forgotten a couple of those places.E DAD You still didn t answer my question Why did they move so much D I don t know But maybe it was because Pa was never content Maybe he thought the grass was always greener on the other side That means he thought life would be better somewhere else, even though it would have been just as good where they were Like, Pa thought the wonderful house was going to be wonderful but he didn t know about the grasshoppers If they would have just stayed in the big woods, they would have had to dig out all those stumps, but they wouldn t have had to deal with the grasshoppers you know I think Ma s the best character in the books.E Why D She s very self less And I think it s very admirable to be self less.E I like Grace .D Why do you like Grace E I like Grace , because she started out like a baby, like Carrie.D So, you like youth Young people E Yeah I like them to start out young, and get older and get older and get olderD Our family has 3 little girls and up until now, their family had 3 little girls Do you think we need to have another little girl now too E I think so, because who will be Grace That s what I wanna know.D Well, who are the other kids, and tell me whyE Me, Gwennie, and Poppy Poppy s is Carrie because she s 1 Gwen s Laura because she s 4 And I m Mary because I m 6 and the oldest and Mary and I are blind And Mary sometimes bosses Laura around, and I sometimes boss Gwennie around Will mom be mad if I put that in the review.D I don t think so.E And sometimes Gwennie tries to boss me around too And sometimes Laura tries to boss Mary around too, even though Laura s younger.D So this was another good Little House book E Mm hmm Lets add laughs The Long Winter to the currently reading shelf.D Ok.

  4. says:

    These books give such a view into the psyche of America back when the land was being settled The pace is slow compared to today s literature, but there is something here One of the best parts of the book is toward the end The Ingalls family are living out on the prairie alone during the winter The spring comes and droves of men begin coming through The Ingalls have the only house so they all stay with them The town literally is put up in two weeks I was shocked I can t believe how that happened The most intense part of the book is the day Charles goes to claim the homestead and 15 men come through and need to spend the night Ma and the girls have locked themselves in their bedroom while the drunk men are fighting downstairs It was a deeply unsettling piece to read I could feel the tension Very well written It is a window into our past for sure I did enjoy this or parts of this It is a much innocent time Ma kind of gets me down She is a killjoy in the book She is always saying that seems heathen and she can t simply laugh at Pa s jokes I have a modern perspective We really have changed as a society I will read of these.

  5. says:

    This was a charming book to read on Christmas Day Last summer I started rereading the Laura Ingalls Wilder series, and this fifth one was a delight By the Shores of Silver Lake covers the family s move to the Dakota territory at about 1879, when Pa gets a job working for the railroad Laura loves being out on the open prairie, and she s fascinated when she gets a chance to watch the men preparing the ground for railroad tracks Pa explains the process for how railroads are built, and how efficiently the crews work I wouldn t wonder if you ll live to see a time, Laura, when pretty nearly everybody ll ride on railroads and there ll hardly be a covered wagon left This book was also interesting because Laura turns 13, and some other girls about her age are already getting married, which startles her I d like my own house and I like babies, and I wouldn t mind the work, but I don t want to be so responsible I d rather let Ma be responsible for a long time yet Like the other books in the series, there are some great stories about pioneering and setting up living quarters on the prairie, and how neighbors had to help each other, and the occasional run in with wild animals There was also a happy Christmas, and Pa picks out some land for their future homestead, which was near De Smet, South Dakota It s a lovely story.It was fortunate that I started rereading the books last year, since there is a new annotated autobiography out about Laura Ingalls Wilder Pioneer Girl , and I want to finish the series before I read that This is a wonderful children s collection, and I m happy to see it s still in print and that kids today seem to respond to it positively.

  6. says:

    Another enjoyable read Laura is growing up and while the story is still kid friendly there are some serious things that happened that made it less lighthearted than the previous book A couple things early on even made me cry a little view spoiler Jack the dog s death and learning that Mary went blind due to an illness that occurred somewhere between this book and the last hide spoiler

  7. says:

    It was toward the beginning of this novel that I abandoned the Little House books at age eleven, and to a large degree, I blame the television series The book opens with the news of Mary s blindness, which was shown with typical pioneer stoicism She was able to sit up now, wrapped in quilts in Ma s old hickory rocking chair All that long time, week after week, when she could still see a little, but less every day, she had never cried Now she could not even see the brightest light any She was still patient and brave Compare that to the TV series, in which Mary just woke up one day completely sightless and screaming, Pa I can t see I m blind The actress was nominated for an Emmy for that performance, but it was nothing like the book.Another discrepancy came in the chapter Grown Up in which Jack, the family dog, dies Twelve year old Laura realizes that just as she has put her old rag doll Charlotte away, she s too old to run around playing with a dog along the prairie She s got responsibilities now Among them is being Mary s eyes, which she does by describing aloud to Mary everything she sees No doubt that is part of what shaped her into a writer.In the TV show, Jack is simply replaced by another dog, Bandit, who gets his name because he is caught stealing bacon and because he has a black mask around his eyes He won t stop following Laura around, and she, grieving over Jack, doesn t accept him as hers until the end of the episode I guess Michael Landon didn t think the viewing public wanted Laura to grow up just yet These things I was able to reconcile There were the books, and there was the TV show, and they didn t always match What bothered me much was a minor detail Laura s first ride on horseback didn t occur until this book The Laura on the TV show was an expert rider at a young age, and some of my favorite episodes revolved around her riding I wasn t willing to let go of those images and the feelings they gave me, even if the book clearly showed they were inaccurate But even that was not enough to turn me off to the books What I think happened was that I reached a dull part the books do have them, as do the works of many other great writers , and I wasn t willing to push myself through as I had with The Long Winter years before I d grown lazy, spoiled by the minute to minute entertainment of television I finally finished By the Shores of Silver Lake two Shabbosim ago, and I loved it But once again, I don t think I had enough understanding of the history to have appreciated it back in fifth grade I remember quite clearly that I listed homestead as a vocabulary word from the book, and I remember noticing I had no others, from which I concluded that the Little House books were getting easy for me But when I looked up homestead in the dictionary, I didn t learn anything about the Homestead Act, which is what the whole book is about Any social studies teachers who want their students to understand the settlement of the American west ought to give them the chapters called The Spring Rush, Pa s Bet, and Building Boom These bring the concept of manifest destiny to life So while the Little House books aren t necessarily vocabulary builders for older readers, they re most definitely a slice of history, and that goes for all ages.

  8. says:

    Like every book in the series this one is filled with moments of poignant hardship Mary going blind and sweet levity Pa s wanderlust hasn t rested, but he s agreed for Ma s sake to stay put About time, is what I have to say to that She put up with a lot, that woman.

  9. says:

    Listened to this volume with kids, in car, over supper And it, the whole series, is an old classic I might have been tempted to dismiss I had three sisters and all these books were in the house and I read everything, so I knew these stories decades ago, and it is surprising to return to them and find what a good writer Wilder is This book was written in 1939, and is meant to reflect 1880 U.S., and it is a sort of fictional treatment of Ingalls s own experiences growing up, with herself as the main character who would write these books It is impossible for me to read these books without images of the TV show in my head, Michael Landon as Pa Ingalls taking his family west to the unsettled wilderness of the Dakota Territory And now we own the DVDs and we are watching them I can recall coming home from school in the sixties and sometimes joining my mom and my sister watching episodes of this show, and almost every show, crying over some thing The death of a dog, a close member of the family, takes up three pages or , for instance.After a series of moves, Pa heads to what will become DeSmet, South Dakota When Ma, Mary, Laura, Carrie, and baby Grace join him, they become the first settlers in this town They file a claim for the settlement they choose And Pa begins work on the first building in what will soon be a brand new town on the shores of Silver Lake Mary is already blind, Laura is urged to be the family teacher against her will, since she wants to be independent than this , and much of the book is focused on just surviving a hard winter We see how hard they have it economically How close they are to losing everything But then there s Christmas, and we get a portrait of this American holiday, circa 1880 My favorite scenes include the railroad trip west, the family s first Wilder captures the absolute magic and thrill of this trip, and the feel of the Future for all of them Laura s watching some of the building of the railroad is fascinating You realize this is what it must have been like, and she captures it with precision and detail and awe, and you feel that, the thrill of progress.You also get to observe what we learned in school is Manifest Destiny, the idea that this was the white settlers s land to take The Ingalls family don t really question this This is land they will claim and build on Ingalls is not unaware of this problem, as she sees the Native American tribes are all cleared out One half breed friend of theirs is a positive character But the very fact of injustice is only hinted at and not really discussed in this volume nor do I recall, growing up, reflecting much about it, though in elementary school and later in high school we did spend some time on how the hopeful westward ho movement also entailed the destruction of the Native American way of life Which is a devastation you don t really get the feel for in this volume, and why most people don t want to read these books any They are a kind of sweetness that cloaks tyranny And maybe Ingalls never adequately addresses it, I can t recall we ll see But the stories are well written, and now, being read, we can use them as an occasion to reflect on these important issues Have to This is exactly what the idea of deconstruction is about Sometimes you have to read books for what is NOT there, what is missing The Ingalls family didn t kill anyone or move tribes out of the area to make room for westward expansion But they are also not entirely innocent, either.And the buffalo are gone at this point At one point they see a lone buffalo wolf, and realize this is the end of an era What makes this experience pretty special in spite of the above issues is that it is read by the wonderful Cherry Jones There s so much music throughout, too, which is fun, too, hearing the music of the times The family portrait is terrific, pretty unforgettable I will keep reading.

  10. says:

    I ve always thought that this is where the series really started to grow up and mature, much like Laura herself Sure, bad things happened in previous books, but you never really felt it, quite like you do here I still always cry about Jack, and I always feel so sad about Mary, and about how Laura takes it upon herself to make sure Mary gets to go to college, no matter what Laura has to do.