top of page


“Andersen is pure perfection....[her] prose will spur readers’ own rosiest memories of a bygone era. She makes brilliant literary detours...[and] manages to make her narrative hang together with such achingly beautiful resolve. Brilliant, heartfelt story-telling.” ---The Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Portable Prairie is an amazement for its spare and steady humor, its emotional heights that come unexpectedly, and all the stories, hundreds of them, some only a sentence or two long.  When you come to the end, you’ll feel you grew up here on the prairie.  Or if you did grow up here, you’ll get teary-eyed as I did.   I bow to this young writer and kiss her hand.  Bravo. Tolstoy would be proud.” --- Garrison Keillor
Andersen’s memoir about her girlhood in South Dakota has real charm.... Her meditations on the meaning of home -- and on the spiritual power of the prairie -- are smart, engaging, and, best of all, unsentimental.” --- People magazine
“An acutely observed, beautifully written episodic account of growing up on the prairie, of the great events of a child’s life and the quotidian ones of a small town.” --- The Boston Globe
“Unfurls in a finished tone -- straightforward, uncluttered, headlong, with a wry smile -- in its contemplation on the meaning of “home” worthy of Bachelard. Andersen causes us to readjust our focus, as Willa Cather and Wright Morris do.” --- Larry Woiwode, author of What I Think I Did and Beyond the Bedroom Wall
“A luminous account of one woman's intellectual flowering in the Plains States and beyond, and a deeply moving and intelligent meditation on the essential human experience of home. This is the American story made fresh.” --- Jincy Willett, author of The Writing Class and Winner of the National Book Award
“Beautifully crafted and engaging .... Andersen reviews her life with a blend of humor and honesty that brings to mind the work of Annie Dillard and the very best in the rich tradition of American autobiography of childhood and place.”  --- Sioux City (Iowa) Journal
“Brings to life a kind of small-town America that is our national dream, even as it meditates on the endless disavowing of home that is our national lot. Spare, witty, poignant, brave and never sentimental.” --- Elizabeth Kendall, author of Autobiography of a Wardrobe and American Daughter
“Funny, often touching recollections.... these wry, witty stories are charming prairie home companions.”  --- The Hartford Courant
An  “elegant, insightful memoir ... intelligent and wryly observant.” --- The Providence Journal
“Gem of a memoir....Brimming with humor and sentiment, this affectionate look backward reaffirms the possibility of taking home with you wherever you may venture.” ---Booklist
“Vulnerably personal and insightfully far-ranging....this is an enlightening, moving rhapsody on the spirit of place and the meaning of home.” --- Publishers Weekly
bottom of page