Arthur and Kell are two characters I want in my life. I am richer for having met them in this novel and want more of them. I want to listen to more of their lives unfolding.
The raw truth of who they are, so beautifully scripted by Liz Moore and so deeply felt in the voices of Kirby Heyborne and Keth Szarabajka bought tears to my eyes as this sad and melancholy tale of love, loneliness, tragedy and devotion made its way into my heart.
Arthur's weight is palpable from the beginning and his unabashed ownership of it, his love and hate and shame of it allowed me to know what it feels like to be covered with so many layers of excess weight.
Kell's love for his mother and the tragedy he endures because of it, is so moving, so honest, it brings my tears to the surface again.
Say something about yourself!
I love this book!
I have not read a book quite like this - until now. This is a different kind of character driven story. The damaged and not so damaged main characters are captivating. Arthur could be real, we have all heard about the person who a crane and demolition crew was needed to get them out of the house (Arthur was not there yet). How does that happen? He is in need of being needed and wanted; to care for someone and to be cared for. The narrator for Arthur provided a distinguished and compassionate voice that helps you want to know him. (There are two narrators and I’m not certain who is who.) His life is revealed little by little - painful - and not so painful – making him the recluse he becomes.
Kel is a nearly grown boy/man who has much too much responsibility foist upon him. He makes decisions and has reactions that are surprising and not so surprising. His journey to fit in (poor kid in a wealthy neighborhood’s high school) was admirable, strong, and filled with insecurity and want. He is a stand out athlete which helped a lot, but the underlying insecurities can be identified by most of us (most of us were not ‘it’ people in high school).
Mostly this is a story about how people find and make family. For Arthur it was usually people who wandered into his life by accident, for Kel it was from people he knew in his past, present, and hopefully future who know him, want to know him, and know how to help and can see a future for him.
It is about the need to be a loved son, the need to be needed, the burden of being needed too much, and the need to care and be cared for.
I highly recommend this book – it is worth a credit and I will listen again. I wanted at least one more chapter.
Yes, I would listen again. I loved the characters. The development of each was excellent.
Arthur was my favorite. So kind, so smart, so wise. He had so much to share, and no one to share it with. He was a lovely and lonely man, and I was drawn to him.
I have not.
Arthur. I think he would be a great friend - loyal, generous and knowledgeable.
I enjoyed this story until the end and I will get to that later. For the most part, I found the characters and their surroundings believable as well as the strife individuals will put themselves through due to their inability or lack of willingness to take action for themselves. There were some uplifting moments but overall I felt sad for most of the characters.Overall, I was disappointed with the ending. I felt the author left us hanging without a resolution - good or bad. Then again, maybe that is what she wanted to portray. In either case, I felt empty and left hanging with the question of 'So what's next'?
I am someone who enjoys audible books very much now that they exist. As a young student (real young) I can remember a teacher telling me how books can transport people to different places & open up a whole new world. This is how listening to audible books make me feel. Now if I can just stop falling asleep while listening to them at night I would be fine. Ha ha
Well, first of all if the story emphasis had not been on bad family realionships, alcholism. poverty, obesity, self pity, teen-age struggles. laziness, illness, self-centeredness, dirty houses, depression, people making poor choices all over the place, insecurities everywhere, broken marriages, poor parenting, who knows it may have flown as a decent book. But wait, maybe if the ending had come together in a way that was pleasing maybe, but the end only imploded in on itself. So no, nothing I can think of could have raised the rating on this book
They were the only saving grace I even finished listening to it.
I would suggest they start all over with a story that was entertaining & not so depressing
AUDIBLE MAKES READING POSSIBLE AND EASY FOR ME...I AM VISUALLY IMPAIRED. I WISH THEY HAD ALL THE BOOKS I WANT I WOULD SNAP THEM UP!
i have read over 100 books and this fits easily in the top ten.
buddy because it is the same type of story. a character study with heartwarming moments.
the scene near the end where yolanda was ordering arthur around to clean this and that. i loved yolanda!
it made me smile. i was interested enough that since i began the book friday i was interested in what was going to happen enough to think often about it when i could not be reading the book.
the reader was great. i loved the way yolanda was portrayed. she could have been a taker taking advantage of arthur but she came across as very straight forward.
Probably would not purchase a Liz Moore work. The voice acting was superb, however.
I can't imagine a scenario in which I'd recommend Heft to a friend. It lacked real growth and hope. The novel started in the depths of despair and self loathing and continued an unflinching downward descent from there. I kept listening as one watches a train reck, hoping for that balance of growth and hope but it was not really there. Only a pale shadow to suggest that real growth and hope might exist if only one sticks around for more of the story. The characters as developed and the ending would suggest that if the characters are internally consistent all will fall backward into lives of "quiet desperation".
The voice actors were pleasant to listen to. Interesting, able to carry off different characters, good inflection and depth of feeling. Good pace.
Ms. Moore does a good job of creating characters and giving depth, honesty and realism. She should work on creating a more balanced novel. What is the purpose of the work? The message? The redeeming value to the consumer? This one failed to deliver, unless the warm, feel good hug of Nietche's existential nihilism was the goal. Review by K. Bury.
This was a wonderful story about finding family. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys well-developed characters and stories of perseverance and survival juxtaposed against the back drop of suburbia. I really liked Arthur and Kel's perspective.
I would have given five stars, but, I listened to this story, becoming more and more entranced with the characters, and, just as I felt I was finally going to get the payoff of what happens when the finally meet, the story abruptly ends and I wanted to throw my IPhone in a tantrum! "Artistic" endings stink!
This is a story of loneliness and loss and fear of the unknowns. Performed with such excellence written with such tenderness and combined for a wonderful read.
Listen and enjoy. It is simply marvelous