Young Pioneers (novel)
First novel edition
|Author||Rose Wilder Lane|
|Published||1932 (Longmans, Green and Co.)|
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. Under Lane's original title Let the Hurricane Roar, the two characters are named "Charles" and "Caroline" which were the actual names of Lane's maternal grandparents - they were changed to "Molly" and "David" for the re-issue of the book as Young Pioneers.
David is forced to go back east because of the grasshoppers plague, leaving his young wife and infant son alone to endure a brutal winter on their isolated farm. The very same plot line is a part of her mother's "On the Banks of Plum Creek".
Both of those incidents actually happened to Laura when she was about seven and lived in Walnut Grove, Minnesota. Due to the grasshoppers, her father Charles Ingalls had to leave home and look for a job. Her mother, Caroline stayed with Laura and her two sisters, and they had to run the farm. It is not mentioned in the book that Caroline was also pregnant at the time with the Ingalls' only son, who died before he was a year old.
Young Pioneers (as "Let the Hurricane Roar") was first published in 1932 as a serial in The Saturday Evening Post while Laura Ingalls Wilder was writing Farmer Boy as a following novel to her Little House in the Big Woods which had already been published. Lane's "Hurricane" was also published as a novel in 1932. Despite book sales being reduced due to the economic situation, the strength over adversity theme of the book sold well to a Depression-weary public and it has remained in print to this day. It's medium length and straightforward style was also well-suited for the young adult market and the book became a mainstay in high school and public library collections.
The novel was adapted into a popular radio broadcast starring Helen Hayes.
Officially, the novel is not a part of the Little House series but is published by HarperTrophy.
Young Pioneers is a made for TV drama movie, based on the novel Young Pioneers by Rose Wilder Lane.
Although it's classified as a fiction, it contains some biographical elements from the lives of Wilder and her mother Laura Ingalls Wilder. The movie was a Pilot for Young Pioneers TV-series, released in 1978. The film told the tale of Molly and David Beaton, two teenage newlyweds, in the Dakota Territory in the 1870s. 
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