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)
I never write reviews but Heft has pushed me to acknowledge what a wonderful story it is, engrossing characters and 5 star performances. Congratulations to Liz Moore, this is a tremendous book.
I really enjoy Audible and the great choice of books. I like true stories, good mysteries, and books about life events.
It just caught my eye and the sample caught my ear and the entire story my heart.
What a book! Great narrative, well written and a captive story. Don't miss this one if you are a compassionate caring and understanding person.
I only know the audio version.
This is a wonderful novel. The narrators are perfect. I had no idea when I downloaded this that it would be so moving and compelling. The character of Arthur Opp is exquisitely rendered. Everything about this book absorbed me. I always have several books on my player, and listen to several at the same time, but when I got into this book, I just keep going. When it came to an end, I started to experience withdrawal symptoms, I wanted it to go on. This is a triumph of creative writing, and the narrators could not be any better.
I enjoyed this novel, with two connected characters with separate story lines, both of whom are dealing with baggage - one physical due to morbid obesity, the other buried under the weight of his family life and pressures of being a poor kid in a wealthy school. These characters are linked through one woman - Arthur's former student and Kel's mother. it is almost like reading two parallel stories that may or may not intersect, and I find the hope shown once both men open themselves up to others is inspiring and a joy to read.
Both. I normally do not like Kirby Heyborne for some reason I don't quite understand, but he in particular has exceeded my expectations. The other narrator was also spectacular. Performances like this can lift a mediocre book to goodness, or a good book (like this one) to greatness.
Just read this book! I wasn't sure about Kirby Heyborne, but am glad I got this book on sale - though I would have gladly paid a credit for this gem of a book. I can't wait until Liz Moore's next offering!
I thought this story was terrible. It rambled, it was repetitive, it had NO ending. The premise was good and the story line had a good start, but then the author forgot to carry it out to a logical conclusion. My husband and I listened together and both of us were sorry to have wasted the time. I feel bad for the readers as both of them were excellent and read their parts to perfection. But, first I ate a blueberry, then I ate a piece of apple, then a strawberry -ho hum. That is not a story.
Like previous reviewers said, this is a story about loneliness and friendship. At first I wasn't sure I could stick with such a sad character but it was a great listen through to the end. Good narrators, too. Definitely worth a listen.
The insight into people who are so often judged only from the outside. We are such an intolerant society and this book would be an excellent English lit book for junior and high schoolers.
When Aurther tells the story about visiting his father after the death of his mother - it helped explain who he was and the depth of his pain.
The innate innocence and goodness of both characters would have been somewhat diminished without the skill of these readers and that is so integral to the development of both characters.
Both - not extreme in either case, but very moving and joyful.
Arthur's complete acceptance of Yolanda without pigeon-holing her by stereotype was really sweet.
I very much recommend this book. I was impressed with the author's ability to authentically present the emotional inner lives and outer connections of uncommon (but perhaps more common than most realize) individuals.
Unfortunately, there were far more than I could have expected... I have been thinking about it for longer than it took to read/listen.
Arthur Opp. No question. Incredible performance. Incredible character.
Sadly, I am afraid that anything I could say might actually serve to minimize the impact of this book on other readers. "Identity" and "self-awareness" are deep pools and the surface reflections are often distorted. See for yourself.
To listen to a great book while I knit is heaven on earth.
I listened to the whole thing. So, it was not that bad. That being said , however, it was painful. The hefty one bemoans his lack of involvement with life while the teenager shares his teenage angst with us. A whole lot of whining going on. I waited for development and lo and behold just as it was about to happen.. the story ends.
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