Reading Report: Heidi
Heidi is a heartwarming novel about a lovely little girl who lives with her grandfather in the Swiss Alps. It was written as a book “for children and those who love children” as quoted from its subtitle in 1880 by the author Johanna Spyri. Heidi is an orphan who was first raised by her aunt Dete in Maienfeld, Switzerland. At the age of five, Heidi was brought to her grandfather, who has been at odds with the villagers for years and lives alone in the Alps. He resented Heidi’s arrival at first, but the girl gradually melted his harsh exterior and had a delightful stay with him and her best friend Peter, a young goatherd. But the peaceful life was changed when Dete returned three years later. She brought Heidi to Frankfurt as a companion of a 12-year-old disabled girl named Clara. Heidi stayed a happy time with Clara and during this time she learnt to read and write, motivated by the desire to go home and read to Peter’s blind grandmother. Clara’s family likes Heidi, but she was often criticized by the strict housekeeper Miss Rottenmeier and becoming more and more homesick. Heidi began to sleepwalk, Clara’s doctors was worried about Heidi’s failing health so she was sent back to the Alps. Grandfather was very happy to have Heidi’s return, he regained his faith in God and went downhill to the village, marking an end to his seclusion. Clara visited Heidi the next year and they spent a wonderful summer. But Peter, feeling deprived of Heidi’s attention, pushed Clara’s wheelchair down the mountain. This allowed a miracle to happen. Without her wheelchair, Clara attempted to walk and finally succeeded. When Clara’s family saw Clara walking to them happily, they were deeply moved. They promised to provide a permanent shelter for Heidi. Everybody is happy and cheerful at the end of the story.
Heidi is among the best-known works of Swiss literature. Although it is famous as one of the most popular children’s novels classic, it is also worth reading for the adults. Since we have missed out something as we make the transition to adulthood, by looking at how Heidi as a child sees the world, we can grasp the true essence of love and happiness. To begin with, Heidi teaches us how to love and care people. Her innocence and pureness gradually changed the odd grandfather; her courage and persistence help Clara stand again. And when she lived in Frankfurt, she kept thinking of Peter’s grandma. She was eager to buy white bread for her and read beautiful stories to her. When I was a child, I was greatly impressed by Heidi’s unconditional love for everyone, and this has fostered me to help others as far as I can. This kind of love is something that we should learn from as adults, since sometimes we help others with the subtle expectation of what the others should do. Above all, love and care for other people is happiness itself. Also, Heidi encourages us to remain enthusiastic towards life. She is delighted when climbing to the top and enjoy the beautiful scenery on the Eiffel Tower, and the guard on the Tower is influenced by her, forgetting all the worries in his life. She is very sympathetic when she find the poor kitten be abandoned in the basket, but Miss Rottenmeier is annoyed seeing Heidi bring them home. In a word, Heidi has a perpetual sense of discovery, even the most ordinary objects has to be observed with feelings. However, these feelings of children sometimes irritate us because we think we have “much more important” things to do. It doesn’t mean that our adults should be curious about everything, but we can appreciate life by relaxing ourselves and try to find the beauty of life. What’s more, Heidi set a good example of being grateful for life and living with great courage. In fact, Heidi’s parents passed away soon after her birth, her parents left her when she was a baby. She is brought up by her aunt, but her aunt chooses to leave her and find a better job. It seems that Heidi is...
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