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Heft: A Novel by Liz Moore
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Heft: A Novel (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Liz Moore

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3683029,459 (4.09)11
Member:rachrun24
Title:Heft: A Novel
Authors:Liz Moore
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (2012), Paperback, 368 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

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Heft by Liz Moore (2012)

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Showing 1-5 of 30 (next | show all)
Excellent as an audiobook. Heft is a well-chosen title. The book introduces us to Arthur Opp, a former university professor who has retreated to his New York brownstone. His contact with people is limited due to his shy reserve and weight. One exception is the correspondence he has maintained for many years with a former student Charlene.

Charlene has also retreated to her home due to illness and alcoholism. Her son Kel is a high school senior who struggles with caring and not caring about his alcoholic mother while negotiating life -- where his mother formerly worked -- at a prep-style high school despite his poverty in Yonkers.

The story has the weight of the strong feelings and inner struggles of each of the characters. It is a memorable book and one I would recommend for a young or older adult. ( )
  esm07 | Aug 18, 2014 |
Oh dear-----I absolutely loved the audio of this book. Wonderful voices, particularly that of Arthur Opp --- but I really want a sequel. I can certainly use my imagination but I want the author to provide us with more in the way she writes. ( )
  nyiper | May 25, 2014 |
What a lovely book, beautifully read by by two narrators, Kirby Heyborne and Keith Szarabajka. I was immediately drawn into the story about Arthur, a former professor so obese that he is a prisoner in his own home, and Charlene, a starry-eyed student whose life does not go as expected, and the people whose lives these two touch.

I wanted to reach out and hug these characters, these broken people who have lost hope and the ones who keep hope when success seems unreachable. The invisible people. I want to tell them that everything will be okay even when I fear for them that it will not.

Not all is tied up in a neat bundle in the end, but the ending was wonderful. This book is not an especially well-known or popular one, and I believe deserves more recognition. The Audible version is terrific. When the last sentence was read, I had that warm, grateful feeling that good books give me, and I will not soon forget the story. ( )
  TooBusyReading | Dec 29, 2013 |
Heft is adult fiction (drug, sex, alcohol abuse) told from two first-person perspectives: a former literature professor, so morbidly obese he's housebound in his family's Brooklyn home, Heft's pace is torturously and deliciously slow in food ritual descriptions (i.e. can't turn your head from a car accident way), but builds momentum when a former student/love interest's letter and a pregnant teen house cleaner encourages him to engage with life again. When the narrative switches to a fatherless teen boy whose life spirals out of control dealing with an alcoholic and sick mother, their engrossing stories slowly reveal a connection which makes you unable to flip the pages fast enough to find a hopefully happier existence/resolution for all the flawed characters involved. ( )
  Micalhut | Aug 20, 2013 |
58-year-old Arthur Opp weighs 550 pounds and lives in lonely, self-imposed exile. A blossoming friendship with his 19-year-old cleaning maid, Yolanda, and the rekindling of a decades old obsession with a former student, gradually draw Arthur back into the land of the living. The story is terrifically engaging and unlike the typical novel of social outcasts discovering their inner resources, the book isn’t really about happy endings – it’s a case where the acceptance of compromise changes everyone’s life for the better. If you enjoy Lori Lansens’ The Wife’s Tale or Matthew Quick’s Silver Linings Playbook, you will enjoy this book.
  vplprl | Aug 1, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 30 (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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Dedication
For my mother, Christine
First words
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 Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:55:31 -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)

» see all 4 descriptions

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