If you’ve read the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder, you know that time and again things go terribly wrong for the Ingalls family. And of all the books, On the Banks of Plum Creek contains the greatest misfortunes for America’s favorite pioneer family.
I had read the whole series aloud with my older daughter when she was five, cuddling on the couch for hours as her little brother slept. Now I felt it was time to introduce the series to my middle children, currently 5 and 8. Since finding time to read aloud is a bit harder with four kids, we’ve been listening to the series as audiobooks in the car.
We were listening to On the Banks of Plum Creek on the way to piano lessons, and we had just heard the scene that I had dreaded (spoiler alert!): the grasshoppers descend like a plague and devour the Ingalls’ wheat crop and every other green thing for miles. I parked the car, and as the kids began to trundle out of it with their piano books, my oldest daughter (10) asked me, “Remember the most horrible thing that happens next?”