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Kirsten's Story Collection - Limited Edition

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All six beloved Kirsten stories are bound in one keepsake volume. Set in 1854, each story reveals more of this brave girl who is making a home in a new land. The richly illustrated hardcover offers a glimpse into Kirsten's world. Inside, this book features even more full-color illustrations and words of inspiration that will delight girls who love Kirsten. All six beloved Kirsten stories are bound in one keepsake volume. Set in 1854, each story reveals more of this brave girl who is making a home in a new land. The richly illustrated hardcover offers a glimpse into Kirsten's world. Inside, this book features even more full-color illustrations and words of inspiration that will delight girls who love Kirsten.


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All six beloved Kirsten stories are bound in one keepsake volume. Set in 1854, each story reveals more of this brave girl who is making a home in a new land. The richly illustrated hardcover offers a glimpse into Kirsten's world. Inside, this book features even more full-color illustrations and words of inspiration that will delight girls who love Kirsten. All six beloved Kirsten stories are bound in one keepsake volume. Set in 1854, each story reveals more of this brave girl who is making a home in a new land. The richly illustrated hardcover offers a glimpse into Kirsten's world. Inside, this book features even more full-color illustrations and words of inspiration that will delight girls who love Kirsten.

30 review for Kirsten's Story Collection - Limited Edition

  1. 5 out of 5

    Cori

    Oh my gosh. I loved these books when I was little. I was actually in a Kirsten play. She's mah gurl. Oh my gosh. I loved these books when I was little. I was actually in a Kirsten play. She's mah gurl.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    reasons why this book was awesome: -for some reason as a child I had a thing for plots that involved deadly fevers. -kirsten is a cool name. -one room school houses -swedes! -santa lucia -braid loops

  3. 4 out of 5

    Laura Robinson

    Not as strong as the Addy books but still solid kids' lit. Not as strong as the Addy books but still solid kids' lit.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Wow, the nostalgia! As I continue to re-read the American Girl series alongside @americangirlspodcast, I was met with a tidal wave of emotion while devouring Kirsten's stories. Kirsten was my first American Girl doll —in classic childhood logic, I chose her because she looked the most like me. Soon, I was wearing "Kirsten hair" (looped braids) to first grade and pretending to brave a Minnesotan prairie blizzard in my suburban back yard. Between ages 6 and 12, I probably read Kirsten's books a doz Wow, the nostalgia! As I continue to re-read the American Girl series alongside @americangirlspodcast, I was met with a tidal wave of emotion while devouring Kirsten's stories. Kirsten was my first American Girl doll —in classic childhood logic, I chose her because she looked the most like me. Soon, I was wearing "Kirsten hair" (looped braids) to first grade and pretending to brave a Minnesotan prairie blizzard in my suburban back yard. Between ages 6 and 12, I probably read Kirsten's books a dozen times. So my memory was quickly jogged while reading her books as an adult. Kirsten's books are both sweet and dark. Kirsten and her family brave the long journey from Sweden to Minnesota in 1854, leaving everything they know behind in hopes of a better life. Amidst death (RIP Marta, you're the realest!), tornadoes, blizzards, fires, uncertainty, the challenges of learning English, and poverty, Kirsten and her family manage to build a life for themselves in America while holding on to their Swedish roots. As a child, I adored Kirsten's relationship with her "Indian friend," Singing Bird. Now, I see how problematic and othering the depiction of Indigenous people was. While there is a brief mention of the white settlers pushing Natives off of their land, there is no real reckoning of the Larson's role in colonization. Kirsten's stories brought me back to a simpler time where I'd live in her stories — her bravery a reminder that I too could persevere.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Shirley

    We listened to this set. I hadn't read the books before. I really liked the story! Great narrator. First book had some good descriptions of immigrating and of Minnesota that tied in well with our US geography class. We listened to this set. I hadn't read the books before. I really liked the story! Great narrator. First book had some good descriptions of immigrating and of Minnesota that tied in well with our US geography class.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    Rereading the American Girl collection is the best. From Kirsten, one learns to have heart and be brave. Kirsten is an immigrant and a pioneer, so we get two viewpoints in her books. (I always loved Kirsten, especially because of my mother's Swedish background.) I continue to hope that the current generation will find and love these books as much as I do. Rereading the American Girl collection is the best. From Kirsten, one learns to have heart and be brave. Kirsten is an immigrant and a pioneer, so we get two viewpoints in her books. (I always loved Kirsten, especially because of my mother's Swedish background.) I continue to hope that the current generation will find and love these books as much as I do.

  7. 4 out of 5

    DW

    Sometimes adult literature is just depressing (most "serious" adult literature) or nauseatingly fluffy (chick lit) or immediately forgettable (action thrillers) or boring (poorly-written non-fiction). On the other hand, there is a fair amount of children's literature that is uplifting and, dare I say, wholesome. So sue me for perusing the children's section at the library after having a bad week. I had probably read all of these books as a child, but I didn't remember most of them. I was struck b Sometimes adult literature is just depressing (most "serious" adult literature) or nauseatingly fluffy (chick lit) or immediately forgettable (action thrillers) or boring (poorly-written non-fiction). On the other hand, there is a fair amount of children's literature that is uplifting and, dare I say, wholesome. So sue me for perusing the children's section at the library after having a bad week. I had probably read all of these books as a child, but I didn't remember most of them. I was struck by the hardships of the Larsons crossing from Sweden and then traveling by train, riverboat, and walking to Minnesota. Somehow, when the whole family died in the old computer game Oregon Trail, we third graders never thought about children and parents *dying*. We were just disappointed we didn't win the game. I was also struck by Kirsten having to leave behind her doll for months. It's such a small object, with such a high emotional value, and all the children I know (including myself when I grew up) had more toys than we knew what to do with. Also the idea of Kirsten staying home from school (did she never go to school in Sweden? She didn't seem to know how to write when she was nine already) to help her mother cook and clean and tend the baby. Laura Ingalls' family always prioritized school when there was one available as far as I remember. They even studied at home. (Of course, as I learned recently, the Little House books were fictionalized, so perhaps that detail was altered.) I was also interested that Kirsten didn't feel any sympathy for the deer and rabbits her family killed and ate ... I suppose that makes complete sense, it's just a bit surprising to read in modern book. And spending the night in a cave with a corpse, yikes.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Kirsten's stories were the most "scary" to me, as she lived in a rational poverty, as an outsider to a fledging, wild nation, that I had never known. I cried at her best friend's death of cholera along the way to the midwest. I scorned strict Miss Winston, who had no feeling for Kirsten's struggles with a new home. I was thrilled that she befriended Singing Bird, and that we got to take a glimpse into native american culture as well. In adulthood, as I come closer to my own ethnicity and immigra Kirsten's stories were the most "scary" to me, as she lived in a rational poverty, as an outsider to a fledging, wild nation, that I had never known. I cried at her best friend's death of cholera along the way to the midwest. I scorned strict Miss Winston, who had no feeling for Kirsten's struggles with a new home. I was thrilled that she befriended Singing Bird, and that we got to take a glimpse into native american culture as well. In adulthood, as I come closer to my own ethnicity and immigrant roots, I appreciate Kirsten's story more than I did as a child. They are definitely worth a re-read.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Rosemarie

    Kirsten's stories are straight out of Little House on the Prairie. There is a blizzard, a tornado, going to town, a barn raising and even a fire that burns her log cabin down to the ground. I loved the Little House books as a child, and wanted to love these stories too, however, what kept getting in the way of that was Kirsten herself - making some very poor decisions! Sadly, I came away from this anthology thinking that Kirsten Larson is the dumbest of the American Girls - at least the ones tha Kirsten's stories are straight out of Little House on the Prairie. There is a blizzard, a tornado, going to town, a barn raising and even a fire that burns her log cabin down to the ground. I loved the Little House books as a child, and wanted to love these stories too, however, what kept getting in the way of that was Kirsten herself - making some very poor decisions! Sadly, I came away from this anthology thinking that Kirsten Larson is the dumbest of the American Girls - at least the ones that I have read. :( That fire that burned her log cabin down? It started because she brought a baby raccoon into the house, ignoring her mother's warnings that raccoons are dangerous mischief makers. I guess that's a mistake that a lot of 10 year olds might make, but I guess I expect more from the American Girls. They are usually much more mature for their age. The weird thing about the fire story is that no mention was ever made of what happened when Mama found out what caused the fire. Could it be she never asked? There had to be some repercussions, but it was just completely ignored. Even worse, though, is the story where Kirsten finds a bee tree and decides to surprise Mama and Papa by collecting the honey herself! There are just SO many things wrong with this. I was horrified she would either get attacked by a bear, get stung by a swarm of bees...or both! Why wouldn't she just tell a grown up what she had found? She would still get credit for finding it - as she eventually did. Kirsten might be new to this country, but it still seemed hard to believe that she didn't realize the dangers here. Speaking of new to this country, the first story was probably my favorite. Being with Kirsten and her family as they travel by boat to the U.S. from Sweden was very well done and I enjoyed that perspective. Finally, I have to say that the blizzard story was a little far fetched as well. This time it was not Kirsten's bad judgement, but her father's that really annoyed me. It specifically says that as they left for town, it was beginning to snow. So, you live in Minnesota and you are expecting a bad winter - much worse than winters in Sweden, I was surprised to learn. Why do you start out on a long journey when it's already snowing?!? I mean, I would not do that nowadays! So, I guess Kirsten's bad judgement runs in the family. I did enjoy Kirsten's friendship with the native girl, Singing Bird, and the barn raising/birthday celebration was also fun. Perhaps the intent was to have girls learn from Kirsten's mistakes, but I was still way more disappointed in her than I usually am with the American Girls.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl Gatling

    I downloaded the Kirsten stories on Audible some years ago when my daughter was into the American Girl dolls in a big way. But we never listened to them. She always did prefer the contemporary Girl of the Year stories to the historical books, anyway. So I listened to them myself. If you like Laura Ingalls Wilder, you will like Kirsten. The era of sunbonnets and homesteading and one-room schoolhouses is the same. Kirsten immigrated from Sweden with her family, and settled on a farm in Minnesota. I I downloaded the Kirsten stories on Audible some years ago when my daughter was into the American Girl dolls in a big way. But we never listened to them. She always did prefer the contemporary Girl of the Year stories to the historical books, anyway. So I listened to them myself. If you like Laura Ingalls Wilder, you will like Kirsten. The era of sunbonnets and homesteading and one-room schoolhouses is the same. Kirsten immigrated from Sweden with her family, and settled on a farm in Minnesota. It was a time of both hardship and promise. The family had suffered hunger on the worn-out land in Sweden. They heard that the soil was rich and fertile in Minnesota, and it was. But life was still hard. A childhood friend could die of cholera, people could freeze to death in a blizzard (something that threatened Kirsten and her father, although they did not die), a woman could die in childbirth (Kirsten worried about her pregnant mother, although she also did not die). All the children needed to contribute on the farm, and Kirsten was proud and eager to think she might help bring extra money to her family (as when she thought she could bring home honey from a bee tree). Kirsten knew there was little left for extras, and she should not even ask for special things for herself. A few years ago people started saying that we should make America great again. Which led some other people to ask, when, exactly had America been great? The thing about American greatness is that America has never been great for all of the people at the same time. I think there was something great about a time when a person could step off the boat with nothing, and get a parcel of rich, good land just for the promise of working it, and, through working really hard, get out of poverty. The problem was that that good fortune came at someone else’s expense. And the books address that. Kirsten befriends an Indian girl. They play together, and give each other little gifts, and Kirsten visits the girl’s camp. But Singing Bird comes to tell Kirsten she is going away. They are all going away, because now that the white farmers have moved in, the Indians have no game to hunt. While American Girl’s primary goal is to build girls up, by showing them to be capable and strong, having fun, and learning lessons, and loving their families, AG also tries to present history with some complexity (as in the Samantha books, Samantha learns sympathy for child laborers in factories). And I appreciate that. In American history there are both good things and bad things, and that is appropriate for children to know.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Samantha Bartley

    Kirsten was my very first American Girl doll, and is still my absolute favorite. Her stories were so special to me when I was little, and getting the chance to reread them brought back special memories and a genuine love for the series that I nearly forgot I had. Meet Kirsten I remember getting this book while at the American Girl Store in Chicago when I was probably eight, and I read the entire book in the first hour of the drive home. I have always adored sweet and simple pioneer stories, and th Kirsten was my very first American Girl doll, and is still my absolute favorite. Her stories were so special to me when I was little, and getting the chance to reread them brought back special memories and a genuine love for the series that I nearly forgot I had. Meet Kirsten I remember getting this book while at the American Girl Store in Chicago when I was probably eight, and I read the entire book in the first hour of the drive home. I have always adored sweet and simple pioneer stories, and this is of course no exception. It has some sad moments and some happy ones as well. The author doesn't shy away from the tragedy that often came when making dangerous journeys like the one the Larson family takes. 4/5 Stars Kirsten Learns a Lesson Miss Winston is the coolest character! I would love to read where she is the main character. Singing Bird was also a nice character addition in this book, although I felt her storyline was a little far fetched. I think it would have been more believable if the two only communicated silently instead of assuming that both picked up English as quickly as they did. But I love this one so much. It gives me happy autumn vibes. 5/5 Stars Kirsten's Surprise This book always makes me so emotional. Kirsten wanted to surprise her family with a Saint Lucia celebration. This always reminds me of that Christmas my mom surprised me by getting me Kirsten's Saint Lucia gown and crown. I was so surprised. It is still my favorite outfit of hers that I own. I also think this is my favorite holiday book in the American Girl series. 5/5 Stars Happy Birthday Kirsten! Ahh this one always makes me teary too. The idea of a friendship quilt is so sweet. I wish this was still something people did. I also love the idea of a big barn raising party. I need friends with barns that need raising so I can come! They sound like so much fun! Also the scene with Kirsten and her Mama talking about the day she was born is such a well written scene. What am I saying, this entire series is so well written. 5/5 Stars Kirsten Saves the Day This was a cute read. Probably my least favorite in the series, although it was still pretty good. Most of the summer stories involve more suspenseful storylines, and I felt like this one was pretty minor. 3/5 Stars Changes for Kirsten The winter stories are always so good! I had actually forgotten about this one. It was a really good conclusion to the series. I wish this book series went on longer. They are just all so good. 5/5 Stars Final Rating: 5/5 Stars

  12. 4 out of 5

    Katie Young

    There's so much to love about Kirsten, even when all her stories aren't collected into one pretty volume with gilded edges. I think my favorite of her books will always be Meet Kirsten. The dangers of immigration are so pronounced, but Kirsten is resourceful and excited about her new life. Kirsten Learns a lesson does brilliant work with second language acquisition, 19th century pedagogy, and some beautiful and progressive intercultural moments. There are tastes of Maryellen's scheming without f There's so much to love about Kirsten, even when all her stories aren't collected into one pretty volume with gilded edges. I think my favorite of her books will always be Meet Kirsten. The dangers of immigration are so pronounced, but Kirsten is resourceful and excited about her new life. Kirsten Learns a lesson does brilliant work with second language acquisition, 19th century pedagogy, and some beautiful and progressive intercultural moments. There are tastes of Maryellen's scheming without fully understanding the consequences in Surprise, Changes, and Saves the Day, which was stressful. St. Lucia Day coupled with some patience and bravery saves Surpirse. Saves the Day is way stressful like the whole time. Changes feels less coherent than it actually is, but it is really nice to see the Larsons settled in a big, beautiful farmhouse by the end of the series. The height of Kirsten's character comes in Happy Birthday where quilting is cool, yo! I was also struck by the thorough portrayal of eeking survival out of the land and the forest. Every book features real dangers and opportunities that were believable and convincing. All in all, a fantastic run, most of which I remembered with a few surprises along the way.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Emily Schmader

    General: Currently reading through the American Girl series with my 5 year old daughter. ‘Kirsten’ was our third series: the story of a Swedish family immigrating to Minnesota, to join their extended family in establishing a farm. We read about their travels, the difficulties of settling a new place & learning the language, the challenges of Minnesota winters, etc.
 Content: During their travels, Kirsten’s young friend, Marta, dies of cholera. I did abridge some of this content for my five year o General: Currently reading through the American Girl series with my 5 year old daughter. ‘Kirsten’ was our third series: the story of a Swedish family immigrating to Minnesota, to join their extended family in establishing a farm. We read about their travels, the difficulties of settling a new place & learning the language, the challenges of Minnesota winters, etc.
 Content: During their travels, Kirsten’s young friend, Marta, dies of cholera. I did abridge some of this content for my five year old (particularly because I remember being terrified of catching cholera when I read this same series as a child!). Later in the series, Kirsten befriends a Native American girl her age & the historical realities of settlers in America and the land they overtook is presented as well.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    As with the other American Girl books, this was an engaging series about a pioneer girl growing up and learning life lessons on the frontier in the 1850s. Though not as in-depth as Little House, they offer a good overview of what life was like, and a unique perspective on an immigrant's experience. I noticed a difference in the writing quality, these being by a different author than most of the other American Girl books, but it was still decent. As always, I enjoyed the illustrations and "Lookin As with the other American Girl books, this was an engaging series about a pioneer girl growing up and learning life lessons on the frontier in the 1850s. Though not as in-depth as Little House, they offer a good overview of what life was like, and a unique perspective on an immigrant's experience. I noticed a difference in the writing quality, these being by a different author than most of the other American Girl books, but it was still decent. As always, I enjoyed the illustrations and "Looking Back" section to learn more about life back then, with a focus on the immigrant experience.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Molly Grimmius

    Finished reading this series with Anne. I’m not sure how many times I read it... I know at least once with my mom and then a few times by myself as a girl. I absolutely believe that American Girl stories really put me down the path of living historical fiction. These are such a great stories... beautiful pictures, great stories, great length and great lessons! It was a delight to read with Anne.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Erica Lizza

    The colored pencil illustrations are beautiful, but I didn’t enjoy the story content the way I did with other AG characters. The plot lines somehow manage to be both random and somewhat boring at the same time, and the superficial characterization of Kirsten’s friend Singing Bird is fairly cringeworthy. Happy Birthday, Kirsten and Changes for Kirsten were the best books in the series.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    I was a big fan of the American Girl books as a child but I had never read the entire series of Kirsten. As I child a I probably would have rated a 4, as an adult 2.5 so I settled on 3. Perfect for a young girl. Kirstens not one if my top Girl’s though- I remember loving Samantha, Molly, and Addy.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kristen L

    My childhood self would have given this book a 4, but rereading (as an adult) to my child it's a solid 3. I'll probably end up rereading it again as she grows up and not dreading it but not excited about it either. My childhood self would have given this book a 4, but rereading (as an adult) to my child it's a solid 3. I'll probably end up rereading it again as she grows up and not dreading it but not excited about it either.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Allison Bell

    What can I say? I am a teacher and I like reading about life for kids with good, historical references.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Joy

    Read aloud with Emily, age 6

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jenna

    A fun story for children.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Amy Anderson

    My daughter has loved reading these AG books to me over the past few years. These are great stories about pioneer life set in the 1850's. My daughter has loved reading these AG books to me over the past few years. These are great stories about pioneer life set in the 1850's.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Laura Danielle

    I loved reading this series in elementary school and I'm glad I decided to reread them. I loved reading this series in elementary school and I'm glad I decided to reread them.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stasia

    Maybe it's the long winter days that draw me towards reading about cozy homesteads and the resilient pioneers who carried through, even in the hardest of times. Maybe it's the long winter days that draw me towards reading about cozy homesteads and the resilient pioneers who carried through, even in the hardest of times.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ranette

    From the American Girls Dolls

  26. 4 out of 5

    Becca!

    We loved listening to this audiobook series since it had the same vibe as the Little House books. On to Addy!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mary Emma

    Kirsten was my favorite American Girl as a kid, and after I purchased the 35th anniversary Kirsten doll, I knew I had to revisit the books. They brought back so much nostalgia from my childhood.

  28. 5 out of 5

    kiers

    maybe its because we have the same name but ever since i was a kid i connected to kirsten so damn hard i love her and once again these books made me cry like a baby

  29. 4 out of 5

    Digne

    I forgot to note the exact dates I read this but it was sometime in July. It was a nice change of pace for a middle grade historical.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    I haven't read these books since I was a kid. I think I was ten when I got my Kirsten doll for Christmas. At the time, I was really into the 'Little House on the Prairie' books and I was really excited to get my doll. Unfortunately, I actually had to return my doll soon after getting her when her eyelashes began to fall out. But I soon got a replacement and she became one of my fondest childhood toys. My sister and I would play with our dolls for hours (she had Samantha) making up new stories an I haven't read these books since I was a kid. I think I was ten when I got my Kirsten doll for Christmas. At the time, I was really into the 'Little House on the Prairie' books and I was really excited to get my doll. Unfortunately, I actually had to return my doll soon after getting her when her eyelashes began to fall out. But I soon got a replacement and she became one of my fondest childhood toys. My sister and I would play with our dolls for hours (she had Samantha) making up new stories and adventures for them. I can't remember when I got the boxed set of all her books. It might have been that Christmas, but I think it was a bit later. Which didn't matter much, since I'd already devoured all the American Girl books that I could find at the school library. I can even remember where they were. As you came in the door you would turn right and go around the circular computer desk. Behind the bulky Macintosh computers, on the bottom shelf - where you had to wedge yourself past the computer chairs - were the American Girl books. Not too long ago, I picked up my books from Mom's house. I've been feeling rather nostalgic for my childhood favorites (unfortunately, I also recently found out that my huge collection of Nancy Drews are long gone). Along with the box set of Kirsten's books, I also have Felicity's box set. Rereading these books was quite a trip. They're written in very simple language, as you'd expect for books marketed to ten-year-olds. The books themselves are slim - around 60 pages each - and focus on six focal events in the main American Girl's life: the introduction, school, Christmas, tenth birthday, an act of heroism, and the final moving forward book. In the case of Kirsten, we follow her as her family immigrates from Sweden to Minnesota and they work to build a new life. The thing that surprised me most in rereading Kirsten's stories was the sheer amount of terrible things that happen to Kirsten. Honestly, they're kind of horrible. In the first book, Kirsten's best friend Marta - whose family immigrates from Sweden with hers - dies of cholera...after they reach America. It's really quite tragic and heartbreaking. As the books move on, Kirsten befriends a Native American girl, Singing Bird, only to have her move West; Kirsten's mother almost dies in childbirth; a tornado sweeps through the farm; Kirsten and her little brother are attacked by a black bear; Kirsten and her father almost perish in a winter blizzard; their cabin burns down; and Kirsten and her older brother come across a dead man in the woods. I can't believe how many bad things happen to this poor girl! I don't remember such bad luck befalling any other American Girl. To top things off, Kirsten's at the root of half the terrible things that happen to her family. She foolishly puts her little brother and herself in danger when they get attacked by the bear and it's her fault that the family cabin burns down. Yet, in the end, it's hard work, perseverance, and a good amount of luck that gets her family through their first year in America. And, much as I did so many years ago, I ate the books up. However simply written, however frustratingly foolish Kirsten can be, I still enjoyed reading the books. I felt transported back to my childhood: reading curled up in bed or on the bus to and from school. Playing with Kirsten and Samantha dolls (and later our two Felicities) around the farm. It was a happy childhood, caught up in the world of our imaginations, and in rereading these books, it was like being ten again. Really, I can't ask more than that from a handful of paperback books. *Note: I have the dark burgundy boxed set with the classic white paperback covers.

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