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Heft: A Novel by Liz Moore

Heft: A Novel (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Liz Moore

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4153625,597 (4.08)11
Title:Heft: A Novel
Authors:Liz Moore
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (2012), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 352 pages
Tags:BM, PBS

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Heft by Liz Moore (2012)


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Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
I read this book in two days. It's not an action-packed thriller, but it was just so enjoyable that it was hard to put down. This is one of those novels that make me wonder "How in the world did the author come up with this story line?" The characters include a 58 year old obese (over 500 pounds) reclusive former college professor who has not left his home in over 10 years, an 18-year old high school student who hopes to play professional baseball, his mother who is alcoholic and suffering from chronic health issues, and an 18 year old employee of a home cleaning service. How these characters come together is told from several different perspectives and through numerous flashbacks covering nearly 20 years. Loneliness and family are the recurring themes that carry the plot. It was a great read - highly recommended! Thanks, Kim, for recommending it! ( )
  TheresaCIncinnati | Aug 17, 2015 |
Arthur Opp, a former lecturer, weighs 550lb and has not left his house for 10 years. He has corresponded on and off for the last 20 years with Charlene, a former student, but has not been honest about his life as he is ashamed. Charlene asks him to help her son, who is at the age to be applying to college, but contact with her is patchy and she sounds drunk on the phone. This is one half of the narrative, and the other half is told from the viewpoint of Kel, Charlene's son, who really only wants to play baseball.

The novel is very well-written and yet I had to force myself to keep picking it up - the characters were all so pathetic (as in I pitied them). I read in the back that the author originally included chapters from Charlene's perspective and, while I see why she chose to leave them out, Charlene was a bit of a black hole at the centre of the narrative. How much did her lupus affect her? I wasn't sure if the inconsistencies in the story were because she was unreliable or whether they were just not picked up in the editing, but had Arthur not seen Charlene for 20 years or for more like 18 - it matters - and did she ever work at a dentist's office, or did she get pregnant when still at school? ( )
  pgchuis | Aug 15, 2015 |
I really liked this book a lot. The characters were lovable and I really liked the way it captured the feelings of loneliness, hopefulness, and human connection. ( )
  klburnside | Aug 11, 2015 |
The audio version of this book was beautifully narrated. I was mesmerized. I was disappointed in how the book ended, when I first finished it, but now.... I love how it is leaving me thinking. Great book! ( )
  LASMIT | Jan 14, 2015 |
This was beautiful. I felt so connected to Arthur. This was an absolutely lovely, character driven novel. ( )
  Lucifey | Jan 10, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
The writing is quirky, sometimes to a fault, yet original . . . Moore’s second novel wears its few kinks well
added by nsblumenfeld | editPublishers Weekly (Nov 14, 2011)
Only a hardhearted reader will remain immune to Kel’s troubled charm.
added by nsblumenfeld | editKirkus Reviews (Nov 3, 2011)
Moore's lovely novel (after The Words of Every Song) is about overcoming shame and loneliness and learning to connect. It is life-affirming but never sappy.
added by Christa_Josh | editLibrary Journal, Lauren Gilbert (Oct 15, 2011)

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Liz Mooreprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Heyborne, KirbyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Szarabajka, KeithNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my mother, Christine
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The first thing you must know about me is that I am colossally fat.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393081508, Hardcover)

A heartwarming novel about larger-than-life characters and second chances.

Former academic Arthur Opp weighs 550 pounds and hasn't left his rambling Brooklyn home in a decade. Twenty miles away, in Yonkers, seventeen-year-old Kel Keller navigates life as the poor kid in a rich school and pins his hopes on what seems like a promising baseball career—if he can untangle himself from his family drama. The link between this unlikely pair is Kel’s mother, Charlene, a former student of Arthur’s. After nearly two decades of silence, it is Charlene’s unexpected phone call to Arthur—a plea for help—that jostles them into action. Through Arthur and Kel’s own quirky and lovable voices, Heft tells the winning story of two improbable heroes whose sudden connection transforms both their lives. Like Elizabeth McCracken’s The Giant’s House, Heft is a novel about love and family found in the most unexpected places.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:23 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Arthur weighs 550 pounds and hasn't left his rambling Brooklyn home in a decade. Kel navigates life as a poor kid in a rich school, and pins his hopes on what seems like a promising baseball career. An unexpected connection transforms both their lives as they find sustenance and friendship in the most surprising places.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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Average: (4.08)
2 6
2.5 3
3 17
3.5 8
4 78
4.5 14
5 44


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