Is Heartland Based On A True Story?

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Heartland is a Canadian television series that first aired on October 14, 2007. The TV show is based on a book series written by Lauren Brooke. It follows the lives of a family consisting of two sisters, Amy and Lou Fleming, their grandfather, Jack, and Tyler Borden. The show takes us through the highs and lows of their lives at the ranch where they live.

Even though the story of Heartland is generally fictional and is not based on a true story, the author has confirmed in an interview that a few additions are inspired by her real life. Tara's pure white show-jumper, for example, is actually her friend's horse.

The book is a 26-novel series that started in 2000 with the novel Coming Home. It's the story of a girl named Amy Fleming, who lives on a horse ranch in Virginia called Heartland. She, her family, and her friends who also live on the ranch help and heal mistreated and abused horses. They try to use psychological therapies rather than the traditional methods of training to help the abused horses. In the course of healing these horses, Amy herself finds healing.

At a point, Amy has dealt with tough decisions that put the future of Heartland in her hands.

Even though the TV show is not based on a true story it is still an incredibly popular show with many people in the US and Canada who love watching it. If you want to learn more about it or read some of the reviews you can do that here

Some Major Characters in Heartland

Amy Fleming

Amy is the protagonist of Heartland. She inherits her mother's gift of being able to tell what horses need and caring for them. At 15, she tried to save an abused horse, Spartan, and was fatally injured in a car accident that killed her mother. Still lying sick at the hospital, she couldn't attend her mother's funeral. Out of the hospital, she finds that her estranged father, Tim, and her sister Lou, who have been living in New York, are back. Now, Amy has to adjust to the current presence of her father and sister while she continues working to heal abused horses, including Spartan while still getting over the loss of her mother.  

Over time, she builds a relationship with Tyler Borden, a young man who her mother had invited to help out at the ranch. As he helps out with the ranch, the friendship they have slowly grows into love, and they eventually get married. Even though they have quite a tumultuous relationship and even break up a few times, they still have a happy ending.

Tyler 'Ty' Borden

He is fondly called Ty and was abused, as a child, by his stepfather. His journey to the ranch starts after he attacks his stepfather for assaulting his mother. Having been sent to juvenile hall after the attack, Amy's mother offers him a job at the ranch to complete his probation. However, after his probation, he does not leave the ranch as he has come to really love his life there. After he receives his high school diploma, he decides to go and study to become a veterinarian. Meanwhile, Amy's grandfather Jack has come to love him and think of  him as a son.

It is at this ranch that his relationship with Amy begins. Even though he had first dated a girl called Kit Bailey, he later admits his feelings for Amy, whom he later marries, even though they've had a difficult dating relationship. He leaves the ranch for a while to go to Mongolia and join the Veterinarians without Borders to save the last of the Gobi bear. However, he finally comes home after a tick bites him, and he contracts a potentially life threatening sickness.

Louise 'Lou' Fleming

She is fondly called Lou and is Amy's sister, she leaves her boyfriend and her lucrative job in New York to return to Heartland to help at the ranch. With her MBA knowledge, she creates a financial plan to pull the Heartland ranch out of its poor financial situation. She handles the business aspect of the ranch and also sets up a corporate retreat center called The Heartland Equestrian Connection after she decides to start a new business venture. She seems to be quite unlucky with romance as she breaks up with her New York boyfriend, starts another relationship, which also fails, with a man called Scott and marries Peter, who she later separates from. She eventually has a good relationship with a man called Mitch.

Jackson 'Jack' Bartlett

Jack is Amy's grandfather and a former cattle rancher who was also once a rodeo star. Jack helps Amy and Ty take care of Heartland after Marion's (Amy’s mother) death. He fixes the fences, broken equipment, and things like it. Early on, Jack was very unfriendly to Tim, Amy's estranged father, because of his drug and alcohol issues, as well as his absence in Amy and Lou's lives. He was also quite unfriendly to Tyler when Tyler first came to the ranch, but he comes to love Tyler like a son, after some time. 

Jack is a stubborn man who does not easily give in to change. This trait causes disagreements between him and other people, especially his love interest Lisa, who he eventually marries and elopes with. He also suffers from heart problems.

Timothy 'Tim' Fleming

He is Amy and Lou's father, who left when the children were still very young. He struggled with prescription drug abuse after a rodeo accident as well as alcohol abuse. Jack kicks him out for this reason. He comes back into their lives after Amy's mother, Marion, dies. Now living at Big River Ranch, he's very close to Heartland. He buys the Big River Ranch after its owner dies and has a short romance with the ranch owner's daughter. Soon, he dates Janice, a jockey with whom he nearly moves to California. However, when he tells Janice that he has an 11-year-old son with an ex, Janice leaves, without him, for California. He starts a rodeo school, a horse business, and a relationship, and when he finds out that Miranda, the ex with whom he has a son, is getting married, he tries to crash the wedding, but Jack stops him. He ends up in a long-term relationship with Casey McMurtry.

These are just a few of the main characters that you will meet when you watch the Heartland TV series. There are many more important characters that come and go throughout the seasons but these five characters are the most important to the story. 


Many people believe that the Heartland TV series is based on a true story but the reality is that it is based on a book series and neither the TV show or the books are based on true stories. There are some sprinklings of real life throughout the books and episodes but those are brief and are normally only something that barely resembles some things that happened in real life. 

We currently have the first 11 seasons available on DVD for only $167.99. You can read the reviews as well as learn more about the series by clicking here

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