Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Bachelor Girl

by Roger Lea MacBride

This last volume of Little House: The Rose Years sees Rose Wilder truly on her own. She returns home to her parents' farm after her high school graduation and year in Louisiana. Life is relatively comfortable, but boring. She's in love, but her beau has yet to propose--he's trying to make a good enough living as a telegraph operator to support both a wife and his widowed mother. When he lands a job in Sacramento, California, Rose is despondent. She finally acts on an old idea of learning telegraphy herself. With her parents' help, she heads off to Kansas City to a telegraphy school. From there she struggles to overcome various challenges to make a new life for itself. It's an interesting tale, one worth checking out, though I didn't find it a very satisfying one. The book tries to make a connection between Rose's experience and the pioneer heritage of her parents and grandparents. While I concede that there is a connection, it seems more like she's trading in the pioneer values so prevalent in the previous books for ones that are more urban and 20th Century. Maybe I can't appreciate it because the series is starting to move from a setting that is, for me, a fantasy to one that is all too familiar and real. Or maybe it's because I've read Rose Wilder Lane's biography and know that Bachelor Girl's happy ending is still many years away from "happily ever after".
LibraryThing link

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