Monday, October 1, 2012



That's what I alway say when a person decides to re-read a childhood fave.  Like, I LOVED Little Women for years and years and years.  Jo March inspired me to grow up and write and have only sons.  But when I re-read that book for the first time as an adult (about 15 years ago), I was sooooo disappointed.  It's just blah blah blah one Sunday School lesson after another and Marmee Dear is seriously no fun at all.

I've talked about this here before, right?  So now not only am I repeating myself in real life, I'm repeating myself on my blog.  There is no hope for me.  None.


I ignored my own advice and have been listening to HEIDI, and I'm still enchanted.  Yes, the child Heidi is too good to be true.  Yes, the governess (aptly named Frauline Rottenmeier) it too mean to be true.  And yes, there are little moral lessons lurking everywhere.  Also, I have to laugh whenever the reader (a man) does his Heidi voice, especially when he does his Heidi voice when Heidi is talking to the goats.

"Oh, don't bleat so little Schneeflocke!"  

But the love of the natural world and all its beauties is so real, so profound in that little book that I want to be there on the mountainside drinking milk and eating cheese with Heidi and Peter--just like I did when I read that book as an eight year-old girl.  Kind of nice.


Emily said...

This was my FAVORITE book when I was a little girl. I believe it is this book that turned me into the avid hiker/outdoors-person that I have become. I was entranced by Heidi's Alps and encouraged by her faith.

I have read this as an adult several times, albeit, outloud to my son and daughters and still love it. I think it holds up well.

A recent re-read attempt of ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, however, was VERY disappointing. So, I definitely know what you mean.

Lisa B. said...

I have been thinking about Heidi! I had it in a set of brown leather(ette) bound books when I was a kid, with watercolor illustrations. I have wondered how it would hold up. So nice to hear that for you it has!

I still find Little Women lovely--did you ever read March? I like all the layers that intervening interpretations have overlain on it. I will forever now think of Marmee as Susan Sarandon, for instance, and also that she is secretly hot underneath all her sermonizing. And a feminist. Etcetera. Also: Professor Baer? is Gabriel Byrne, so also hot! The hotness abounds! (Laurie = the young Christian Bale!) Nope, Little Women = feminist hotness, and you can't tell me different.

CSIowa said...

I never could get very far into Little Women, for all I kept having people tell me I should read it and would love it. No, thank you.

I am 8 chapters from the end of an Anne of Green Gables read-aloud with my 11-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter. They are both loving it, and I am quite pleased with it myself. The first chapter's description of Marilla was more brilliant than I ever could have appreciated as a young girl. It made me more enthusiastic than I've been in a long while to read aloud to my children.

To each her own, I guess. These days I'm happy when what I'm reading is not my tax textbook.

BBB said...

I totally know what you're talking about!!! I always am a little afraid of re-reading books that I loved when I was younger.

I first experienced the let down with the DARK IS RISING series.
That series seriously got me reading (I hated reading b4 those books). I recently re-read the first couple books in the series. So depressing. Ugh.

Same thing with A WRINKLE IN TIME. I'm tempted to re-read it a third time to see if it's really true.

James said...

Books I have read multipile times that I liked, but then I didn't:

The Sun Also Rises
The Scarlett Letter

Books I have read multiple times, but which I have not yet grown tired of:

Catcher in the Rye
Cat's Cradle
Amazing Gracie
Juliet Naked
A Long Way Down
Huckleberry Finn

Emma said...

I'll have to tell you my "Heidi" story some time. My Mom read it to us out loud each night for a month when I was about 9 years old. At the end, everyone remembers and will attest to the scene I made. One of those, pull on your hair, stomp your feet in fury scenes. I've never read it since, but now I think I will read it to my own daughters....I wonder how they'll handle the ending...if they do a repeat of my youth, I must remember to get it on video.

SWILUA said...

It's funny... I read Heidi as a kid, and the one enduring memory I have of it (I literally remember NOTHING else in the story) is Heidi and Peter taking a chunk of cheese and eating it for lunch on the mountain. So novel! Eating cheese all by itself! I guess authors can preach at us all we want and it won't hurt us; we'll only remember the stuff we remember. In this case, it was the one thing in the book that surprised me so much that I thought and thought and thought about it for a very long time. Still think about it, actually. Every time I eat a chunk of cheese.