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Extended Audio Sample Heft, by Liz Moore Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (4,505 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Liz Moore Narrator: Keith Szarabajka, Kirby Heyborne Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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This heartwarming novel about larger than life characters and second chances was the Audie Award Nominee for Literary Fiction in 2013.

Arthur Opp, weighing in at five hundred fifty pounds, is a former academic who has been homebound in Brooklyn for more than ten years. Just twenty miles away in Yonkers, Kel Keller is struggling as a seventeen year old poor student in a school of rich kids. Putting all his hope in the dream of a professional baseball career, he feels uncertain that his family drama won't tie him down.

The connection between Arthur and Kel is Kel's mother Charlene. She used to be a student of Arthur's, and though they haven't spoken in twenty years, she makes a surprise phone call to him, a plea for help, which shakes them both up -- for good.

Told through the perspective of Arthur and Kel, with quirk and with compassion, Heft becomes a triumphant tale of two very unlikely heroes. Love and family truly can be found in the most surprising ways.

Liz Moore is a writer, a musician and a teacher. Her first novel, The Words of Every song was written while she was in college; it received 3.5 out of 4 stars in People Magazine. She has released an album called Backyards. After receiving her MFA in Fiction from Hunter College, she moved to Philadelphia. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor of Writing at Holy Family University in Philadelphia, where she lives. Her novel Heft has been critically acclaimed.

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.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “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

  • “A suspenseful, restorative novel from one of our fine young voices.”

    Colum McCann, National Book Award–winning author

  • Heft is a work that radiantly combines compassion and a clear-eyed vision. This is a novel of rare originality and sophistication.”

    Mary Gordon, New York Times bestselling 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, bestselling author of The Red Thread

  • “As emotionally appealing as Arthur is, he’s in a dead heat with Kel, the other voice of the novel…By the end we are in love with the characters and just want to see them happy.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “Moore succeeds in creating an insightful page-turner that seeks to demystify archetypal characters...The writing is quirky, sometimes to a fault, yet original...Moore’s second novel wears its few kinks well.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Moore’s lovely novel is about overcoming shame and loneliness and learning to connect. It is life-affirming but never sappy.”

    Library Journal

  • “Endearing.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Only a hardhearted reader will remain immune to Kel’s troubled charm.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “This deeply touching novel shows that you can choose your family. In Heft, writer-musician Liz Moore alternates Arthur’s story with Kel’s to create a stunningly sad and heroically hopeful tale of two men from fractured families and the women—a high school athlete, a pregnant cleaning lady—who, miraculously, love them. This is a beautiful novel about relationships of the most makeshift kind, about bonds that go beyond the biological. It’s also about how, sometimes, even the deepest wounds can be healed by the simplest, smallest acts of kindness.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine

  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award
  • A 2012 Kirkus Reviews “New and Notable Title”
  • Selected for the February 2012 Indie Next List
  • An iTunes Best Audiobook of 2012: Fiction
  • A 2013 Audie Award Finalist for Literary Fiction
  • On the 2013 ALA Listen List for Outstanding Audiobook Narration

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Jenny | 2/19/2014

    " This book totally drew me in, I loved the characters and the stories, but must say, was a bit disappointed in the end wanting more. I suppose had I read all the literal translations and after thoughts at the end, I may have gotten there... so may go back to do that...Overall, glad I read it..Quick and easy read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Barbara | 2/16/2014

    " Told from two perspectives, one a teenage boy with an alcoholic single mother. The other, an obese, recluse who has been penpals with the boy's mother for years. The common bond is the yearning each of these characters has to be part of a family. We are brought along on their journeys of self-discovery. I highly recommend this as an affirmation that life is what we make it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Frieda | 1/31/2014

    " I found it an interesting point of view of someone who has chosen to be a shut in rather than deal with painful life experiences. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Becca | 1/28/2014

    " I chose this audiobook based on listener raves and was skeptical at first. But I came to love the characters and truly missed them once I finished the book. Recorded brilliantly in two voices, Arthur (extremely huge reclusive older man) and Kel (good-looking troubled highschool boy with promise), this charcter-driven story revolves around themes of loeliness, trust, love, and connection. Highly recommended. "

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