Heidi was first published in 1880. A classic tale of childhood joys and friendships, it has delighted and inspired generations of children.
I consider this story a romance. I know it's not one in the 'traditional' sense of the word, but it's one in spirit. It's about a gruff old man learning to open up his heart to the love that his young granddaughter feels for him; it's about the fierce and abiding love a young girl feels for her grandfather and the mountainside on which he lives.
It was one of my favorite childhood stories, and still is. To be sure, it's rather idyllic, but that is how most children see the world, and the places and people they love, no?
What I don't remember from the abridged version as a child was many of the religious passages/ connotations of the novel. It was a nice surprise, and I felt that Ms. Spyri weaved it well into her novel.
The prose like many of the classics, is flowery and embellished, and in this story, could be a bit tedious here and there, but never for long.
All in all, it's a wonderful story about a little girl who's joie de vivre and love bled out into everyone around them and made their lives that much better.
Reminds me of Anne of Green Gables :D