Excerpt from The Weight of a Human Heart by Ryan O'Neill, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Weight of a Human Heart

Stories

by Ryan O'Neill

The Weight of a Human Heart by Ryan O'Neill
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Jul 2013, 240 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 2014, 240 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Sarah Tomp

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


'Ah, Barbara,' she said. 'What do you think of this? Is it too much?'

'I'm going now, Mum,' I said, shouldering my bag. 'David is giving me a lift to the station.'

She looked down at the paper in front of her.

'Wait, don't go yet. I love you,' she said.

'What?' I said. She turned to look at me, breathing out cigarette smoke.

'This dialogue from the story. "Wait, don't go yet. I love you." Is it too much, do you think?'

'No, Mum. It's not too much,' I said. 'It's hardly enough,' and I left.

'Don't get pregnant,' she called from the window as we drove away.

I wasn't surprised when my mother killed me. The first time was a plane crash, the second I was burned alive, and the third was a swimming pool drowning. Even the critics took notice, with the Sydney Morning Herald, in its review of A Serpent's Tooth ('In just two collections, Hately has become our foremost shortstory writer') wondering at the number of young women dying in her stories. It was uncomfortable visiting home around this time, thinking that even as she made small talk, or made lunch, my mother might be planning another murder. But there must have been a limit to how often a mother could kill her daughter, as after my fourth death (from choking on a chicken bone, in a story published in Meanjin), she let me live.

Excerpted from The Weight of a Human Heart by Ryan O'Neill. Copyright © 2013 by Ryan O'Neill. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    The Hermit
    by Thomas Rydahl
    If you can be comfortable with Scandinavian noir played out against the sun-drenched backdrop of ...
  • Book Jacket: The Radium Girls
    The Radium Girls
    by Kate Moore
    In 1915, Austrian-born Sabin von Sochocky developed a luminescent paint that used radium to create a...
  • Book Jacket: Long Black Veil
    Long Black Veil
    by Jennifer Finney Boylan
    "This was a long time ago, before my first death, and none of us now are the people we were then. ...

Win this book!
Win News of the World

News of the World

A brilliant work of historical fiction that explores the boundaries of family, responsibility, honor, and trust.

Enter

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Essex Serpent
    by Sarah Perry

    Costa Book Award Finalist and the Waterstones (UK) Book of the Year 2016
    Reader Reviews

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T's S I Numbers

and be entered to win..

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The One-in-a-Million Boy by Monica Wood

A richly layered novel of hearts broken seemingly beyond repair and then bound by a stunning act of human devotion.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.