Audie Award Nominee, Literary Fiction, 2013
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.
©2012 Liz Moore (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“A suspenseful, restorative novel from one of our fine young voices.” (Colum McCann, National Book Award–winning author)
“In Heft, Liz Moore creates a cast of vulnerable, lonely misfits that will break your heart and then make it soar. What a terrific novel!” (Ann Hood, best-selling author of The Red Thread)
“This is the real deal, Liz Moore is the real deal - she’s written a novel that will stick with you long after you’ve finished it.” (Russell Banks, Pulitzer Prize finalist)
In my book 3 stars is just average. This book did not compel me to listen while my car idled in the driveway, nor was it so bad that I was just biding my time until it was over. That being said, this is an OK story. Not a waste of a credit, but certainly not over-the-top.
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
I love a book that takes the time to flesh out its characters and their relationships with others. This was a well written character study of four interesting personalities and it was performed beautifully. I was captive to their stories as all their lives built to a crescendo. And then it ended. Before the crescendo! While I really hate when a book comes to an abrupt end without rhyme or reason, 'Heft' was well worth the read if you enjoy character study books. I do recommend it.
I have never before had such an emotional response to a character in a book. Arthur's honesty and self-awareness is part of what makes him so endearing, even while his self-esteem, weight issues and decisions raise other emotions. Arthur is so real to me and Moore did an amazing job of realistically portraying how a person can withdraw so far from society while simultaneously yearning to belong. Arthur's words are so poignant and vivid, he had my heart from the very beginning. While Yolonda (his maid) and Kel (a pro-baseball hopeful teenager) live sterotypical have-not lives, their personalities drew me in as well.
This is a suspense story of dysfunction with vulnerability, courage, love, clarity and persistence rather than action and Ninja skills. The storylines were not obvious, as I expected them to be, but were unique and unexpected. The abrupt ending was a disturbing surprise. I just was not ready to let go of Arthur, Yolonda and Kel.
A great deal of accolades also goes to the narrators who did a superb job. I will look for more of their work and other books by Moore.
I loved Heft. I found the characters to be well developed and believable. I enjoyed having two different voices for Kel and Arthur. I'm so sorry to have come to the end of this book!
Very good touching story. It shows realistic people with believable serious life issues.
I liked the narration. He was very gentle and made the voice sound like the personality of the characters.
The performance made the book. It was an excellent story made much better by the best reading performance I've heard. I may even listen to it again, and I've never done that before.
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