Edallia's Reviews > Heather

Heather by Vivian Schurfranz
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's review
Jul 25, 2008

did not like it
Read in July, 2008

(See my review of Amanda for my general thoughts on the series as a whole.)

As soon as I picked up this book during the Sunfire Re-Read, I remembered my history with it. This is the only Sunfire that I started and didn't finish. In fact, I gave it back to my friend the next day, and said, "no thanks, this one's boring."

I still found it fairly boring during the re-read, and I also found myself wanting to fling it against a wall.

How many Schurfranz books start off with the heroine taking an unauthorized swim in a river in order to demonstrate her feisty rebelliousness? Heather is at least the *third.* Unfortunately, Heather Lawson doesn't drown, but instead saves an Indian boy from drowning, only to need saving herself by a handsome Dutch sailor, Jan van Ryswyk, and they visit the Indians, who hail Heather as the most greatest thing on the face of the earth, and also the most beautiful. End Chapter One. Begin Danielle flashbacks.

Then Heather flounces back home to find her father in a tense discussion with their neighbor, Lord Downing, who claims that the Lawsons have no right to their land, and that it really belongs to the Downings. His body language and expressions all scream "slimy snake," so we know he's lying.

So there's a land dispute, and Heather is confined to the house due to threats against the Lawsons, but she rides off anyway to meet Jan, and gets attacked by thugs, at whom she waves pistols. Heather's father hates the Dutch. (It's 1665, and New Amsterdam has just become New York.) She can't see Jan anymore.

And at some point, Heather meets Lord Downing's son, Michael, an artist who paints her portrait and tells her she's beautiful a whole lot. Then Heather's dad randomly decides Lord Downing is a nice guy after all! Gee, Heather ought to marry Michael and forget that Dutch guy!

Then someone sets the Lawsons' crops afire, and there is much kidnapping of people, and Heather acting recklessly and stupidly, and even some rescuing of Dutch guys and cats from the bowels of prison ships. (HOW did they JUMP from a SHIP into a RIVER and swim for shore with a CAT?)

And then all of a sudden, Jan wants Heather to stay at home and be a traditional wife and mother, even though *nothing in his character up until this point* hinted that he felt this way about women? So the Dutch guy is bad after all! Heather ought to run off and marry Michael, who *gave up his art for her* after his father threatened him with not being able to see Heather again! Because *everyone* would give up their vocation for the specialness that is Heather!

I honestly didn't think *either* guy was all that fantastic or compelling, and their respective affections for Heather develop overnight and come off as very superficial. The ultimate union with Michael is ... oh, did that happen? I guess it had to happen for the book to end. Huh.

I guess Schurfranz tries to make this one exciting (and there actually *is* a plot under all of the crap... I think?) but I can't get over... well, Heather. Schurfranz spends half the novel trying to convince us she's oh-so-special and beautiful and inspiring to people, when she's fairly full of lifeless cliche. Thankfully there are no random celebrity appearances, but there is plenty to be had of another fatal Schurfranz flaw. Yes, Heather's hair is black like the raven, and her eyes are blue like the sky, and her cheeks are rosy like one who has the consumption. And her boyfriends *will* remind you. A lot.

Also, I only read this three days ago and I can already barely remember it. So it really must be boring.

Verdict: Unless you like cliched claptrap, this one is only for the most diehard of collectors. Eurgh.
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Comments (showing 1-2)

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message 2: by ChloeLeeNH (new)

ChloeLeeNH I loved this review LOL. I read a lot of these books when I was younger and I can't remember this one at all... so either I never got to it or it was as unmemorable as you said LOL...

Too funny!

Karla Thanks for reacquainting me with what happened in this book. I'd totally forgotten. :-P

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