The Sand Castle
by Louise Taylor-Streu
Trafford Publishing

"I had dreamed all my life of a cottage on a lake in the woods."

Louise Taylor-Streu's memoir, The Sand Castle, takes the reader into the beautiful north woods of Wisconsin. When friends invite Taylor-Streu and her husband to visit their cottage on a lake, they drive the 400 miles from Chicago and explore the possibility of buying a place of their own in the area. A local realtor leads them to an unfinished A-frame with floor to ceiling windows facing Sand Lake. The author immediately knows she has found the "cottage in the woods" she has dreamed about all her life and names it The Sand Castle.

Taylor-Streu reminisces about the following years when her family and friends visit them—both the fun and the mishaps. She and her husband adapt to local ways. They realize that the sign in a local restaurant that reads, "If you are in a hurry—GO BACK TO CHICAGO" means just that.

Their new environment includes flying animals of several different varieties, animals that hung in trees—and hooted, animals that crawled, slithering animals, running and flying squirrels, raccoons, groundhogs, wild turkeys, mice, deer and lastly, black bears that it was said could be quite aggressive.”

After ten years, it was the small furry animals, however, and the author's aversion to bats, that caused her to make the decision to sell the cottage. These little creatures loved its warmth and comfort as much as the owners and were not easily evicted. In her well-written memoir, Taylor-Streu chronicles both the joys and the reality of living amidst nature in a "cottage in the woods."

Return to USR Home