Booklist reviews Credo: The rose wilder lane story

Booklist Review

Booklist Online    |    Gordon Flagg    |    June 21, 2019

Rose Wilder Lane is remembered as the daughter of Little House on the Prairie author Laura Ingalls Wilder, but as Bagge reveals, she was also a groundbreaking journalist and war correspondent (she traveled to Vietnam at age 78), a pioneering feminist, and a founder of the libertarian movement. Bagge traces her trajectory from a farm girl born on the prairie to eccentric polemicist whose political views ranged from borderline-crackpot to full-out bonkers. Resolutely anti-government, she grew her own food to protest wartime rationing and negotiated her payments downward to avoid being subject to income tax. Her role in her mother’s beloved children’s novels remains controversial. Ostensibly, her contribution was limited to editing, but Bagge lays out the evidence that she was closer to a ghostwriter. The delightfully loopy, cartoony drawings tell us not to take Lane as seriously as she took herself. Bagge’s own libertarian views (he’s a longtime contributor to Reason) impart a certain sympathy to Lang, but his humorous bent ensures that her outlandish side receives parity with her undeniable accomplishments.

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