Kim Herrington's Reviews > Heft

Heft by Liz Moore
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's review
Jun 21, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: adult-for-ya

Arthur Opp is a former college professor. He weighs over 500 pounds, has no friends, isn’t in touch with his family, and hasn’t left his Brooklyn house in a decade. Kel Keller is the teenage son of Charlene Turner, a former student of Opp’s. Charlene hasn’t worked for some time and practically never leaves her house anymore. Charlene and Arthur had exchanged letters occasionally throughout the years, but they were not really part of one another’s lives. Charlene surprises Arthur with a call requesting that he help Kel with college applications. However, Kel plans to bypass college in his pursuit of a baseball career. So, it seems their paths will not cross until a drastic act by Charlene steers Kel toward Arthur.

Once I got past the use of ampersands, even at beginnings of sentences, and the use of “O” instead of “Oh,” I really enjoyed this book. I think the book is weighted (no pun intended) in favor of Arthur’s character, but I still think teens would read this. Kel’s father left when he was four, and he has become his mother’s caretaker while trying to be a regular teenager—he’s had a life very similar to Arthur’s except that Arthur wasn’t poor and saw college as a way out of his life. I think lots of teens would be able to see themselves in Kel, and even in Arthur too.
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