V.C. Andrews Heart Song

ISBN 13: 9780671534721

Heart Song

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9780671534721: Heart Song
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Melody Logan was as alone as a solitary gull, with only the wild Atlantic wind to lift her spirits....
When Melody Logan's mother died in a car accident, Melody lost the last shred of family she had ever known. She was practically a stranger to the Logans, her wealthy relatives on Cape Cod, where she now drifted on a sea of dark secrets. In the eyes of gentle Aunt Sara, Melody was a replacement for her dead daughter, while for Uncle Jacob she was a reminder of the family's shameful past. Only good-hearted Cary seemed to care, and since it was revealed that she and Cary weren't truly cousins, the affection that had always surged between them now crested in thrilling waves.
But Melody knew she could never truly echo Cary's loving promises until she discovered her own buried identity. Despite Grandma Olivia's daggerlike threats, Melody sought out Belinda, a mysterious, half-crazy woman who was her real grandmother. Belinda gave Melody hope -- and a glimmer of the pearls of truth she knew were hidden in the shifting Cape Cod sands. Somehow, someday, the story of her past would be her hard-won treasure, to be savored in a world of sunshine and happiness...where she truly belonged.

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About the Author:

One of the most popular authors of all time, V.C. Andrews has been a bestselling phenomenon since the publication of Flowers in the Attic, first in the renowned Dollanganger family series, which includes Petals on the Wind, If There Be Thorns, Seeds of Yesterday, and Garden of Shadows. The family saga continues with Christopher’s Diary: Secrets of FoxworthChristopher’s Diary: Echoes of Dollanganger, and Secret Brother. V.C. Andrews has written more than seventy novels, which have sold over 106 million copies worldwide and have been translated into twenty-five foreign languages.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Prologue

As a little girl, I'd spend hours looking out our trailer window, dreaming of the life I'd have when I grew older. I dreamed of all the friends I'd make, the parties I'd attend, the special boyfriends I'd bring home to meet Mommy and Daddy. Oh, if I'd only known that the coming years would bring more sadness and pain than I could ever imagine. If only I'd wished harder, dreamed longer, maybe my life would be different, maybe I wouldn't be sitting on this beach so lonely and confused.

Instead of parties and friends to occupy my time, I spend many of my days here, staring out at the ocean, thinking about Mommy and my step-daddy, about how they're gone now, dead and buried, leaving me all alone, an orphan. Of course, I'm not completely alone. I have my new family, the Logans: Grandma Olivia, Grandpa Samuel, Grandma Belinda, Uncle Jacob, Aunt Sara, and Cary, too, but they all have their own reasons for making me feel unwelcome, unwanted. After all, they hadn't asked me to come live with them. In fact, in all my sixteen years they hadn't asked for me at all.

When Mommy first brought me to Provincetown after my step-daddy died, I couldn't believe she was going to leave me with strangers. I didn't know them, and, family or not, they made it clear they didn't want to know me. They couldn't get past the fact that I was Haille's child and the Logans had nothing but hate and contempt for my mother. I begged Mommy to take me with her, not to leave me grieving all alone. I had just lost the only daddy I had ever known, and now she was leaving too! But nothing I did or said would make her stay; she was determined to become a famous actress or model and she said I would just stand in her way.

At first I believed Mommy would come back for me. Surely she would miss me as much as I missed her. Didn't she cry herself to sleep each night as I did, missing Daddy, missing our old life back in Sewell, West Virginia? But no, Mommy was too self-absorbed to miss me or think of me or even to remember to call when she said she would. I finally realized that I was stuck in Provincetown for good. Oh how I hated Mommy for being so selfish, for running off with her lover Archie Marlin and leaving me with this family who hated me, hated her, and wanted me to be someone I wasn't. It seemed the only way I fit into the Logans' life was if I replaced my cousin Laura, Cary's twin who had died in a boating accident.

But I didn't want to be Laura, I wanted to be me! But who am I? When Daddy died and I learned he was really my step-daddy, I was left with a million questions. Who was my real Daddy? Did he think of me? Did he even know I existed? I thought I could find some answers with the Logans, but they refused to discuss my search for my father and became more secretive with each question I asked. Cary was the only one who would help me, and together we learned that Kenneth Childs, a local artist and friend of the family, was once in love with Mommy and could possibly be my father.

I hadn't had long to rejoice in my news when word came that Mommy had been killed in a car accident in California. Was I never to be happy again? It seemed that whenever anything good happened to me it was always followed by some horrible tragedy. What could be worse than losing Mommy? I thought a part of me died with Daddy, but it wasn't until Mommy was gone too that I realized how truly alone I was. If only I could find my real father I knew he would make things different. Better. I would have a whole new life with him, a life where I was loved and cared for, a life like the one I remembered in West Virginia. Kenneth Childs just had to be my real daddy. He had to be.

pard

Chapter 1: Curiosity Killed the Cat

"I'm leaving, Aunt Sara!" I shouted toward the kitchen as I hurried to the front door after hearing Kenneth Childs blow the horn of his jeep. Cary had introduced me to Kenneth at the beginning of the summer, and it wasn't long after that Kenneth hired me to be his assistant. Kenneth was mostly a loner and a bit of a slob, so I helped him around the house, cooking, cleaning, generally keeping him organized, as well as helping him around his art studio. As I cleaned and swept and dusted I waited, waited for him to open up to me, to tell me if I was his daughter.

When Grandma Olivia revealed that my true grandmother was really her sister Belinda, I realized that Uncle Jacob and Aunt Sara were not actually my uncle and aunt; they were my cousins, as were Cary and May. But because Jacob was my step-father's brother, I continued to call him Uncle and call Sara, Aunt Sara. Cary was happier knowing we weren't as closely blood related as we both originally thought. Ironically, this made him behave more shyly toward me, as though now that a true relationship was not forbidden as some unforgivable sin, he wasn't sure how to proceed.

I put these thoughts of Cary and our blossoming friendship behind me as I grabbed my gear and headed outside to meet Kenneth.

As usual, Kenneth's dog, Ulysses, was sitting in the rear of the jeep. His pink tongue was out, and he was panting, looking as if he were smiling in anticipation of my arrival. His ebony coat had streaks of gray running through it, especially around his snout. During one of Kenneth's rare warm moments, he told me Ulysses had become sprier since I had begun to look after him. "Despite his age," Kenneth added, for Ulysses was nearly a hundred in human years.

So far, that remark about Ulysses was the closest Kenneth had come to giving me a compliment. He had merely grunted his approval when he saw how well I had cleaned and organized his home, and he simply nodded when I did the same in the studio. Most of the time, he was so absorbed in his work, we barely spoke. He made it clear from the beginning that he wouldn't tolerate any interruptions to his concentration, so once he stepped into that studio and began something, I had to move like a ghost.

"An artist has to step out of the real world and dwell in the world of his own creation if he is to succeed," he explained. "It takes a while to get there, and when he's jarred out of it, for whatever reason, it's like starting all over again each time he goes back to what he was doing. Understand?"

I nodded and he seemed satisfied.

"Morning," he said as I stepped up and into the jeep.

"Good morning."

I had my hair brushed back and tied with one of Laura's mauve silk ribbons and I was wearing what was to become my summer uniform: a sweatshirt and dungarees and a pair of sneakers without socks. The sweatshirt was navy blue with Provincetown printed on it in faded white lettering and it, too, had been Laura's.

When I had first arrived in Provincetown to live with Uncle Jacob and Aunt Sara, I felt funny wearing Laura's things. I saw how much it bothered Cary, but if I refused to wear anything Aunt Sara suggested I wear, she became very hurt. Now, Cary accepted it and I...I had the feeling Laura would want me to wear her clothes, even though I had never met her and knew her only from what I heard and the pictures of her I had seen.

Ulysses leaned forward for my hug and licked my face.

"Good morning, Ulysses." I laughed. "Don't eat me for breakfast."

"I think it's going to be overcast all day today. Might even rain," Kenneth said as he turned the jeep around and we bounced over the road.

For New Englanders, especially Cape Codders, I thought, the weather was the safest topic to discuss. Everyone had something to say about it, and it usually had nothing to do with politics or religion, although I had heard Judge Childs at one of Grandma Olivia's formal luncheons recently blame the Democrats for too much rain last year.

"I don't mind the thunderstorms. We had them in West Virginia, but I wouldn't want to be in a hurricane," I said.

"No. I've been in a few and they're not pleasant."

We turned onto the highway and headed out toward the Point, where Kenneth lived and had his studio. Although the jeep rode well enough, it looked as weathered and worn as an old pair of shoes, the sort you hated to give up because they were so comfortable. Despite his success as an artist, Kenneth had few of the trappings of wealth. He just didn't look as if he belonged in a shiny new luxury automobile. It would be impractical for him to drive it over the beach road to his home anyway.

I had been working for him only a little more than a week, but I already knew that he didn't spend much time relaxing by the ocean. Occasionally, he went for a walk to think through something artistic that confused him, and it was mainly from those walks and the driving he did in the open jeep that he got his bronze color. His darkened complexion brought out the hazel specks in his otherwise often dark brown eyes, especially during the morning hours, when he looked so bright and alert.

As usual, he wore a pair of leather sandals, ragged jeans, and one of his faded blue T-shirts. This one had some small holes down the right side. With his full beard looking a bit more straggly than usual, he could easily pass for a homeless man, I thought. However, he did keep his dark brown hair neatly tied in a pony tail. Most of the time, he simply had it tied with a short piece of string. Today he had it bound with a thick rubber band. He had a small gold dot of an earring in his right lobe, and wore a shiny piece of black driftwood shaped in a half moon tied around his neck with a string of tiny sea shells.

He drove quietly, his eyes fixed on the road, his face so still, it reminded me of the faces on his statues. There was just the slightest twitch in the muscles of his jaw. I thought he had the type of face that would make any woman's heart flutter when he looked her way, or even when he didn't.

Despite the cloudy sky, the air was warm. Provincetown was crowded with summer tourists. There was much more automobile traffic than usual, and even at this early hour, there were people walking along the streets. Kenneth didn't rage about the invasion of outsiders as did so many other Cape Codders I had met. He spent so little of his time in town, he didn't seem to notice or care. And then, of course, there was the prospect of his works being sold faster when the tourists arrived. Their dollars were just as good as local dollars he told me when I mentioned Uncle Jacob's attitude.

"Did you see anything in the marble block yet?" I asked as we approached the beach road that wound around and over the dunes to his home and studio.

He glanced at me quickly, looked forward, and then shook his head.

"Nope," he said. "Nothing."

"How can you be sure it will come?" I asked. It took him so long to respond, I thought he wasn't going to answer.

"It always has before," he finally said.

The first day he brought me to the studio to work for him, I saw he had a six-foot-tall by nearly four-foot-wide block of marble. He told me it had been delivered the week before.

"It's just like a blank canvas," he explained. When I said I didn't understand, he approached it, put his hand on the stone, and lowered his head as if in prayer. Then, he walked around the piece as he began his lecture.

"The ancient Greeks believed the artistic work was already in the stone. The artist's job is to free it, to bring it out."

"It's in the stone?"

"Yes," he said, almost smiling at my incredulity. "This is what is meant by the artist's vision. In time it will appear to me."

I stared at the marble, looking for some hint, some small indication of a shape within, but I saw nothing. At the time I wondered how long it would be before he saw something. According to him it had been over two weeks and he still hadn't, but he didn't seem upset or nervous about it. He had a patience, a calmness, I had already come to admire.

Although I had been trying to ask him casually about himself all week, I still knew very little about him. He never volunteered any information and getting him to answer my questions was like pulling porcupine quills out of a hound dog.

The house and studio came into view.

"Were you always artistic?" I asked. "Even as a child?"

"Yes," he said. We pulled up to the house and he turned off the engine. Then he reached back for a bag of groceries he had bought before picking me up.

"Did my mother ever see anything you created?" I asked quickly. He didn't pause. He opened the door, the groceries under his arm.

"Everyone I know has seen something I did one time or another," he said and headed for the house. I watched him in frustration as he walked away from my questions. I keep giving him opportunities to open up a conversation about the past, I thought, and every time, he shuts the door in my face. No matter how hard I struggled to find a common ground, a topic of conversation that would lead us to talk about the past and maybe produce the revelations I expected, Kenneth either ignored me or changed the subject. So far, he had succeeded in keeping himself shut up in his work and his private thoughts.

I got out of the jeep, Ulysses following behind me.

Kenneth paused at the door.

"Just put all this away and then come to the studio. I want you to prepare some clay. I've decided to do those vases for the Bakerfields to kill time while I wait for my vision. They've been after me for months and they have so much money, it's obscene. Might as well help them lessen the burden of their wealth," he added dryly and entered the house.

Were all artists as disdainful of their customers? I wondered. He acted as if he were doing everyone who liked his art work a favor, instead of being grateful for all the attention he was receiving. Hundreds, probably thousands of artists would die to be in his shoes, I thought.

I was beginning to wonder if I even liked the man who could be my father, much less ever come to love him. Was it possible for me to love him anyway? Is blood enough to bind two people? Surely love had to come from other things, the most important of which was trust. Trust was coming hard to me these days, as one by one everyone and everything I'd come to believe in had let me down.

When I decided to take the job and work for Kenneth, I hoped that just being around him, seeing how and where he lived, would make it possible for me to understand him, but Kenneth's house, furniture, clothing, and possessions were as inscrutable as everything else in his life. The day Cary first brought me to the house, I ventured up to the front windows and peered in. Cary had described Kenneth's furniture as something from a thrift store. When I looked in, I realized he hadn't been exaggerating.

I did the best I could with the thinned and frayed rugs and the worn easy chair, settee, and scratched wooden tables, however polishing and cleaning only seemed to bring out their age and damage. But the house did need a good onceover. I found cobwebs in almost all the corners and sand tracked in everywhere. The windows were clouded with salt and dust and the kitchen was a disaster. The stove was caked with grime, the stove top stained. It took me most of my first week just to get the kitchen clean enough to use. Again, I wondered if all artists were like Kenneth Childs, and if they were, why would anyone really want to be one?

His bedroom wasn't any different from the rest of the house. I could have planted flowers in the dirt under the bed and behind the dresser. I swept and washed the wooden floors. I took all of his clothes out of the closet and organized them, after I had washed and ironed most of them. I emptied the dresser drawers and arranged everything in an orderly fashion and then I washe...

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Book Description SIMON SCHUSTER, United States, 1997. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Melody Logan was as alone as a solitary gull, with only the wild Atlantic wind to lift her spirits. When Melody Logan s mother died in a car accident, Melody lost the last shred of family she had ever known. She was practically a stranger to the Logans, her wealthy relatives on Cape Cod, where she now drifted on a sea of dark secrets. In the eyes of gentle Aunt Sara, Melody was a replacement for her dead daughter, while for Uncle Jacob she was a reminder of the family s shameful past. Only good-hearted Cary seemed to care, and since it was revealed that she and Cary weren t truly cousins, the affection that had always surged between them now crested in thrilling waves. But Melody knew she could never truly echo Cary s loving promises until she discovered her own buried identity. Despite Grandma Olivia s daggerlike threats, Melody sought out Belinda, a mysterious, half-crazy woman who was her real grandmother. Belinda gave Melody hope-- and a glimmer of the pearls of truth she knew were hidden in the shifting Cape Cod sands. Somehow, someday, the story of her past would be her hard-won treasure, to be savored in a world of sunshine and happiness. where she truly belonged. Seller Inventory # BZV9780671534721

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Book Description SIMON SCHUSTER, United States, 1997. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Melody Logan was as alone as a solitary gull, with only the wild Atlantic wind to lift her spirits. When Melody Logan s mother died in a car accident, Melody lost the last shred of family she had ever known. She was practically a stranger to the Logans, her wealthy relatives on Cape Cod, where she now drifted on a sea of dark secrets. In the eyes of gentle Aunt Sara, Melody was a replacement for her dead daughter, while for Uncle Jacob she was a reminder of the family s shameful past. Only good-hearted Cary seemed to care, and since it was revealed that she and Cary weren t truly cousins, the affection that had always surged between them now crested in thrilling waves. But Melody knew she could never truly echo Cary s loving promises until she discovered her own buried identity. Despite Grandma Olivia s daggerlike threats, Melody sought out Belinda, a mysterious, half-crazy woman who was her real grandmother. Belinda gave Melody hope-- and a glimmer of the pearls of truth she knew were hidden in the shifting Cape Cod sands. Somehow, someday, the story of her past would be her hard-won treasure, to be savored in a world of sunshine and happiness. where she truly belonged. Seller Inventory # AAS9780671534721

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