Now, I’m not saying that anyone ripped anyone off. I’m just saying that Heidi by Johanna Spyri reminded me of a lot of the other children’s classics I’ve read lately… if you took them and set them up in the Swiss Alps.
Heidi by Johanna Spyri
Published by Kingfisher on November 15th 2002
Orphaned Heidi lives with her gruff but caring grandfather on the side of Swiss mountain, where she befriends young Peter the goat-herd. She leads an idyllic life, until she is forced to leave the mountain she has always known to go and live with a sickly girl in the city. Will Heidi ever see her grandfather again? A classic tale of a young girl's coming-of-age, of friendship, and familial love.
A little bit of Little Women…
The over-flowing piety and moral indoctrination got a bit exhausting after a while. It’s not that I mind those things, but when they’re done through children’s novels, it’s pretty apparent what the agenda is. As a reader, I don’t care what your agenda is – I just don’t want to the agenda distracting me from the story.
Combined with a hint of The Secret Garden
[SPOILER] I mean, one of the characters was in a wheel chair and then she learned to walk. HELLO SECRET GARDEN. But to be honest, I can’t really point fingers at Heidi. The Secret Garden was published 20 years later…
And the perfection of A Little Princess
All the ways this book was similar to A Little Princess was the reason I enjoyed this book. I loved the genuine and sweet, orphan girl (Heidi, of course). And I quite enjoyed the ending with her wealthy Frankfurt “family” that supplied her with many comforts.
All in the scenic Swiss Alps!
I loved the setting of this novel. I can totally see why children (and adults) are charmed by this book. The rural mountain life sounded so wonderful through Spyri’s descriptions that this very NON MOUNTAIN girl almost wanted to go stay in a cabin for a while (…but then I remember that’s 100% not my thing).
In the end, I liked this one. I felt very familiar to other children’s novels (which isn’t necessarily fair since it was published prior to a couple of them), but oh well! Maybe I should have read this one first?
Have you read Heidi? What were your thoughts?