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Heartland [Hardcover]

By T. Davis Bunn (Author)
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Item Number 29965  
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Item description for Heartland by T. Davis Bunn...

The scriptwriter has a case of writer's block, so the television series "Heartland" is in danger of being cancelled until a mysterious man appears who may be the hero or have other motives.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Thomas Nelson
Pages   400
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.32" Width: 6.32" Height: 1.35"
Weight:   1.4 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 19, 2006
Publisher   Thomas Nelson
ISBN  1595542035  
ISBN13  9781595542038  

Availability  0 units.

More About T. Davis Bunn

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Davis Bunn is the author of numerous bestsellers, with sales totaling more than six million copies. The winner of three Christy Awards for excellence in fiction, he is a lecturer in creative writing and Writer in Residence at Regent's Park College, Oxford University. Davis and his wife, Isabella, divide their time between England and Florida. Visit his website at

T. Davis Bunn currently resides in Oxford. T. Davis Bunn was born in 1952.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Fiction > General

Christian Product Categories
Books > Fiction > General Christian > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Heartland?

Interesting twist  Mar 8, 2008
At first I thought I had accidently picked up a Western novel. But then Jay Jay is involved in a wreck and wakes up nude in a Hollywood studio. The twist in this story intrigued me. Heartland isn't a classic literary novel, but is it meant to be? I don't think so. Rather it's a fun book with a cool twist that keeps you reading to the end.
3.5 stars but could have been 5  Feb 2, 2008
I found "Heartland" to be enjoyable and with a little more meat it could have been one of the best books I've ever read. Unlike L. Lorton's review I actually read the entire book, understood why JayJay spoke in cliches, and realized that Hollywood's movie business is far from a Christian industry, as the book clearly shows.
The secondary characters were interesting and well written. JayJay however seemed to be a bit more troubled then I believe he should have been. I realize Bunn was trying to make him human but let's face it, he wasn't. Except for JayJay's internal turmoil's the fantasy aspect of the story could have continued throughout the book but it wasn't and if it had the possibilities could have been endless. There should have been a few surprises written in at the end but that didn't happen either. In fact some of the story didn't have an ending i.e., what happened to the problem the town was experiencing? What we get is a fairly straight story (even though JayJay is a fictional character), good versus evil, Godly standards beating worldly ones.
Not preachy to those in Christ but to your average close-minded unbeliever they may find the obvious Christian references and lifestyles a bit to loving and kind. If you want a "mainstream" book you may want to look somewhere else but if you want an enjoyable story and an eye-opening look into Hollywood I recommend this book.

1 Star = I've been robbed!
2 Stars = Why'd I finish it?
3 Stars = Good
4 Stars = Excellent
5 Stars = Life changing
Bunn's engaging style and the fact that the unexpected twists and turns keep coming  Jun 5, 2007
"Heartland" is a long-running television western whose lead character is a hero whom audiences love to cheer for. Often, in these kinds of programs, the public confuses the actor with the role he plays --- and that's exactly what happens with the character of JayJay Parsons. Through the years, viewership has been shrinking for "Heartland" because actor Neil Townsend is gaining weight, boozing and exhibiting erratic behavior; he no longer looks like the manly winner-take-all hero.

The Centurion Studio hires a replacement actor, whose real name happens to be JayJay Parsons. JayJay can't explain where he came from; he just got off the bus and landed at the Studio. In an uncanny way he looks, walks and talks like the television character yet has never appeared on camera. The lead scriptwriter, Peter Caffrey, adds a romantic interest to the show, with Kelly Channing, a relatively inexperienced actor, assuming the role. Director Britt Turner has always worked in television and wants to direct feature films, but he never has had the chance. To every observer, "Heartland" is positioned for cancellation.

Early in the novel, JayJay befriends some Vietnamese Christians who invite him to live with them. Their Asian grandmother loves "Heartland" and has hated the decline of the show. Film student Ahn Nguyen ends up becoming JayJay's agent and negotiates his contract.

For almost 10 years, Davis Bunn has been on the inside of the motion picture and television industries. He uses this background to craft a well-told story with multiple threads. The dialogue is crisp, characterizations sharp, and plot vivid. One of the subplots revolves around Martin Allerby, Centurion's Studio Chief and Greenlight Man, and his director of sales, Milo Keplar, who are attempting to orchestrate a takeover of the studio. Allerby has no interest in "Heartland"; he is merely following orders from the majority owner of Centurion stock, Carter Dawes. The mysterious and elderly Dawes lives on a ranch, never comes to the studio and sends his attorney to board meetings to carry out his instructions.

Allerby directs the "Heartland" crew to create the studio's first feature film. However, they face a number of key challenges, as there's no script and they're merely writing as they go along, while the actors and those working behind the scenes are inexperienced. Almost everyone, including the "Heartland" cast, thinks they may get cancelled at any point in the process and not complete the project.

Then something new begins to stir, which Allerby has never seen before on a studio lot. The lead actor, JayJay Parsons, begins a prayer meeting and invites anyone in the cast and crew who would like to attend. These spiritual elements are woven into the fiber of this well-told story. Will the Christians be able to rise to these seemingly impossible challenges and succeed where others have failed?

Audiences love "Heartland" because the stories are predictable and good wins over evil. It's the behind-the-scenes drama that drives this novel and the uncertainty that the inexperienced cast and crew will succeed. I highly recommend this contemporary novel because of Bunn's engaging style and the fact that the unexpected twists and turns keep coming.

--- Reviewed by W. Terry Whalin
completely flat, awkward and silly  Mar 17, 2007
While 'Heartland' has an interesting premise, the execution is horrible. It is nothing more than a religion tract, partially fleshed out with pasteboard characters. The dialogue is almost silly. Everyone constantly refers to how they pray at night and always talk in complete sentences. No one ever uses any kind of bad language. And everyone in Hollywood seems to be an ardent Christian!

On top of these sillinesses, there are amazing numbers of technical or contextual errors - calling a camera lens a 'nozzle'; talking about jerry rigging a digital lense onto a film camera (lenses are lenses and if they fit, they fit - no amount of meddling with a 35mm lens will make it fit an incompatible wrong body); Having 'paparrazi' use a 35 mm motion picture camera - those things weigh 500 pounds and everyone uses hi-def digital; having the Vietnamese grandmother figure calling rice soup 'rice gruel."; Having the VIetnamese old ladies play mah jong which is a typically Chinese game(The Vietnamese have their own games); calling Asians, Orientals (where has the author been for the last 50 years?)

I quit after page 50.
Must Have Been a Bad Week  Feb 23, 2007
I always liked Davis Bunn so what happened here? The truth is I made myself finish this book. Jay Jay is interesting but comes across as a cartoon cut out of the real thing. The antagonist of the story is no better; flat and predictable. There is much to learn in this novel about the film and television industry and I guess that is why kept reading. All the same. This is just not one of Bunn's best.

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