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The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Philipp…

The Art of Hearing Heartbeats (edition 2012)

by Jan-Philipp Sendker

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6775514,123 (4.01)65
Title:The Art of Hearing Heartbeats
Authors:Jan-Philipp Sendker
Info:Other Press (2012), Edition: Original, Paperback, 336 pages

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The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Philipp Sendker



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English (51)  German (2)  Italian (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (55)
Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
When I was first teaching I used to spend quite a bit of time helping my 4th graders learn to listen. We would put our heads down on the desk and I would set a timer and they would remain perfectly (as perfectly as a 4th grader can) still and simply listen. When the timer went off we would talk about what they heard - making a list on the board. At first it was really hard for them to hear more than the hallway noise and feet shuffling - but they did get better.

That was a long time ago. As I read this book I kept remembering that practice - pausing and listening.

This is a love story and a societal critique carefully woven together in an engaging, fictional tale.

Julia is searching for her father in a land of unknowns.
Her father simply disappeared one day from his successful New York City job and his settled family.

Simply vanished.

Julia has decided to try to track him down. She has only a name - Mi Mi and Burma - his homeland.

So - that sounds as fantastical as it could possibly be.
Traveling completely around the world to a dingy tea room in an bustling town to hear the story of her father.

How! How? How?!

And that is this story.

Built on impossible odds in improbable situations a love that knew no ends was created. And Julia alone was there to hear the story.

Her father, Tin Win was blind as a child - what? - and fell deeply and completely in love with Mi Mi - wh0? - a beautiful girl with deformed feet.

As a pair they explored the town and countryside where they lived - Tin Win carrying Mi Mi on his back and Mi Mi navigating through the Burmese terrain. How??? Partly because Tin Win had learned to listen at a depth unheard of. He had learned to simply be and hear the whosh of a bird's heartbeat inside an egg, the slish of a snake under a log and Mi Mi became his eyes to prove he truly heard.

Then all changed when Tin Win was moved to the city for surgery and eventually to the States to work. His hearing became unnecessary, he could see.

And his life moved on into the western world.

But - he was always listening for Mi Mi's heartbeat.

I know that because...well I don't want to say anything. But he was listening!

This is an engaging tale, interesting and easy to read.

But, to really 'get' it takes some quiet and some focus.

I think that would have made Tin Win happy! ( )
  kebets | Nov 1, 2014 |
This is a beautifully written story a Burmese man living a successful life in America who, late in life, abruptly leaves his wife and daughter, to seek his lost love in his home country. The language is really striking, for which some credit must go to the translator, as the original was written in German. I'm in a small minority of readers who was not enthralled, partly because I'm so distracted by life's stresses right now that it is hard to be enthralled by anthing, and partly because it's a tale of undying love and I have a hard time suspending my disbelief about that. ( )
  CasualFriday | Oct 6, 2014 |
A sweet, gentle story but told in a vague, wandering style of writing. ( )
  bookappeal | Aug 31, 2014 |
This books is just absolutely beautiful. Tin Win and Mi Mis's story is tragic, wonderful, unexpected and just pure love in my opinion. This book makes me wonder if what i feel is really love after all. The end is a little unexpected but i just have to say. WONDERFUL. ( )
  angie.arciba | Aug 9, 2014 |
Julie Win's Burmese father disappears the day after her graduations from law school. When her mother finds a love letter to a Burmese woman named MiMi, Julie decides to go in search of her father and MiMi. She learns that MiMi is crippled, but that she has acted as the eyes for Tin Win, Julie's father. Tin Win can read people, property and animals by sound, including heartbeats. The love MiMi and Tin Win share is very special. Tin Win regains his sight when he is sent to Rangoon to live with his uncle--it was cateracts and once removed all is well. Then the uncle sends Tin Win to America where he marries and raises Julie and her brother. He writes MiMi until he marries and she writes him. The uncle in Rangoon never forwards the letters either way but he saves them--the letter Julie's mother finds.

Fifty years later Tin Win returns to Burma and to MiMi's home. Here he and MiMi lie together and die. They were both cremated together.

The story is a beautiful love story--very touching. ( )
  MarkMeg | Jul 26, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
"The heart of this sentimental novel is the romance between the teenagers Tin Win and Mi Mi in pre-World War II Burma. Recommended for readers who enjoy sweetly tragic romances."
added by Christa_Josh | editLibrary Journal, Pamela Mann (Nov 1, 2011)

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jan-Philipp Sendkerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wiliarty, KevinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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When a successful New York lawyer suddenly disappears without a trace, neither his wife nor his daughter Julia has any idea where he might be--until they find a love letter he wrote many years ago to a Burmese woman they have never heard of. Intent on solving the mystery and coming to terms with her father's past, Julia decides to travel to the village where the woman lived. There she uncovers a tale of unimaginable hardship, resilience, and passion that will reaffirm the listener's belief in the power of love to move mountains.… (more)

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