Sunday, 19 August 2018

Heidi by Johanna Spyri + #FreeBook + #cake #giveaway

Heidi by Johanna Spyri
First published in two parts in German in 1881. I read the Eileen Hall translation published in 1956.

My 6th read for my Classics Club Challenge and featured in WorldReads: Switzerland

I don't think the trinity of Book, Tea and Cake can be improved upon so I today am delighted to be able to offer a bakerdays cake review and giveaway alongside my book review of the classic children's tale Heidi. bakerdays even did me a special Literary Flits cake - isn't it cute!
If you're in a hurry to get to the bakerdays cake, scroll down now and come back up for the book later!

How I got this book:
Borrowed from my sister

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Where to buy this book:

The Book Depository
Amazon (free ebook editions)

A young girl's idyllic mountain life in the Swiss Alps Heidi is only five when she goes to live with her grandfather in his hut in the Swiss Alps. Up in the high pastures, she befriends the goatherd Peter and delights in the company of the gentle goats. Everyone is sad when Heidi is taken away to live with a family in Frankfurt. But Heidi's courage and good spirit charm all who meet her. Soon she is able to return to her beloved mountains, sharing her happiness, health and home with all her new-found friends. Heidi was first published in 1881. A classic tale of childhood joys and friendships, it has delighted and inspired generations of children.

When my sister spotted on Facebook that I had signed up for the Classics Club Challenge, she kindly lent me three classics from her bookshelves: The Secret Garden, Heidi and Animal Farm. Of the three, Heidi is intended, I think, for the youngest audience so I swiftly zipped through it in an afternoon and very much enjoyed the read. In common with Black Beauty, which I revisited five years ago, Heidi does rather hector its readership. (Black Beauty lectured against cruelty to animals and Heidi lectures on practicing Christianity) It's still a beautifully inspirational story though and I defy anyone not to want to live in a Swiss mountain cabin after reading it! Fresh mountain air and good companionship are the cures for all ills and being a preternaturally good child will get you your heart's desire in the end.

Spyri obviously had a tremendous love for rural Switzerland and this shines through in her writing. By contrast, the Frankfurt city scenes, while very funny in their clash of cultures and manners, feel claustrophobic. I could easily imagine Heidi's homesickness being so aggravated by the hemmed in streets and walls. This story is utterly charming and the definitive 'heartwarming tale', yet manages to avoid becoming nauseating! I loved the relationships between Heidi and the elderly characters. Age is depicted as synonymous with patience and wisdom whereas younger adult characters are often quite the opposite. All in all, another book well deserving of its Classic status. I just wish I knew what became of the kittens!

I have blogged about bakerdays before and think that their Letterbox cakes are a brilliant idea. Cupcakes and bigger cakes are also available, but I love the thought of a cake that is specifically designed to be posted through a letterbox. Being able to personalise the design with my own text is fun and it's even possible to have your own photograph printed onto the icing. How was this never A Thing before?

My 'Literary Flits' cake arrived thoughtfully packaged in its own little cake tin to ensure its perfect condition. bakerdays offer a variety of recipes including Lemon Drizzle, Chocolate Chip, or gluten wheat free, and I chose the chocolate cake. I've previously tried the Lemon Drizzle and the Dairy-Free and it's practically impossible to decide my favourite! Maybe the chocolate just pipped the others? The cake has a beautiful dark chocolatey colour with a good taste and light, moist texture. There's a layer of chocolaty cream underneath plus the printed royal icing over the top and sides. The icing itself is nicely rich, but not too sweet. Perfect with a good cuppa! And that good book of course!

And now it's time for the Giveaway!

Would you like to win a bakerdays cake for yourself? Well, if your postal address is on the UK mainland ONLY, you're reading the right blog! You could win your choice of bakerdays Letterbox Cake posted directly to you!
There's several ways to enter this giveaway via the Gleam widget below.

bakerdays letterbox cake giveaway

The Giveaway is open until midnight (UK time) on the 2nd September and I will pick a winner on the 3rd. That winner will have 3 days in which to respond to my email or the prize will be forfeit. (GDPR: I will need to pass the winner's email address onto bakerdays and they will need the winner's postal address in order to send out the prize.)

Good luck!

And if you just can't wait for the Giveaway to end, use SUMMER10 at the checkout for 10% off all bakerdays cakes, cupcakes or balloons. Code expires: Friday 31st August at 23:59pm.

I received a cake for review from bakerdays. This has in no way influenced my opinion and all thoughts on the product are my own. Links in this post are affiliate links.

Search Lit Flits for more:
Books by Johanna Spyri / Children's fiction / Books from Switzerland


  1. I can never resist a chocolate cake and it looks so tasty! Count me in!

  2. That cake is so cute! I hope whoever wins likes their cake.

  3. These cakes are adorable! We really don't have anything like it here in the States.

    1. I'm not sure if bakerdays post cakes to America?!

  4. I love Heidi! And you're right, it really does make you want to move to rural Switzerland. I read this when I was around Heidi's age, and it made me want to be a perfect well-behaved child, so I guess that part of the book did as intended. I will have to reread this soon.

    That cake is adorable! I'm in the US, so I can't enter the giveaway, but I may just go grab a cupcake of my own now.

  5. Oh a cake for me. I am sure if i won i would share with my kids and hubby...or would i

  6. I have always heard of Heidi, but was never really familiar with the story. Yay, cake!

    1. You've never read Heidi? I thought it was obligatory!

  7. The first novel I ever read, aged 5 (probably abridged?). It was one of a set of Bancroft Classics, I still remember the red and black covers!

    1. I'm pretty sure we had this is a classics set too - at least one! I vaguely remember Dean and Someone hardbacks. Maybe they included Heidi?

  8. Cakes are what my sister and I call fat club but we still enjoy them

    1. As long as they're not an everyday treat, I think it's ok!

  9. Lovely and Heidi is my favourite since I was little

  10. Congratulations to Lauren S who's won the bakerdays letterbox cake :-)