Book Him Danno's Reviews > Heft

Heft by Liz Moore
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's review
Apr 05, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: 2012, books-sent-by-author-publisher-for

How can two seemingly opposite people be so alike? That is the question in Heft. Two different people ultimately finding salvation in each other.

Arthur Opp is a extremely obese former college professor who never leaves his house or has any relationships besides what is to be found on-line. Kel Keller is a vibrant athletic teenager going to one of the most affluent schools around. Yet through this wonderful book Heft Liz Moore manages to weave these two lives together to show how they are the same guy. Both are abandoned by their fathers at a young age, both are subjected to dysfunctional mothers, and ultimately both do not feel they belong in the lives they have.

Arthur’s answer is to shut himself away from the world and slowly eat himself to death. He manages to keep some relationships working through a correspondence of lies, especially with the one person who thought him a hero. His former student, almost girlfriend, the mother of young Kel.

Kel finds himself adrift in the world he enjoys, because he is a poor boy with an ill mother who is only allowed into the society he currently enjoys, the very rich, because of his mother’s former job and his athletic abilities. But much like Arthur he has reality rushing forth to meet him, he has to face how alone he really is. Not fitting into the life he has.

Luckily Kel’s mother Charlene saw the writing on the wall and gives her son one last push out of his current path in life. Through manipulation and some lies she shoves him right towards Arthur. The beauty of this book is how through small and simple things greatness can be achieved. The prospect of this meeting allows Arthur to make small changes in his life, slowly opening him up to what could be; teaching him the meaning of family and friends. For Kel it spurs him to dig into the questions that were always left unasked. Who is his father, who is his family? Plus he faces his biggest fear that he is alone and that nobody could love him. He also learns what a friend is, and yes, that it is possible for him to have them.

Heft is a beautiful story of healing, of two people able to save each other through compassion. The whole book builds up to the meeting between our two heroes, but by then they are both on a new path. The book left e wanting more, to see Arthur and Kel working together for redemption.
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