Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of a Fist

Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of a Fist

Author:

Hardcover, Pages: 314

Genres: Fiction, Historical, Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction

Language: English

Reads: 183

Downloads: 10756

Rating: Rated: 6077 timesRate It

Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of a Fist
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Book Summary

The Flamethrowers meets Let the Great World Spin in this debut novel set amid the heated conflict of Seattles 1999 WTO protests.

On a rainy, cold day in November, young Victor--a boyish, scrappy world traveler whos run away from home--sets out to sell marijuana to the 50,000 anti-globalization protestors gathered in the streets. It quickly becomes clear that the throng determined to shut the city down--from environmentalists to teamsters to anarchists--are testing the patience of the police, and what started as a peaceful protest is threatening to erupt into violence.

Over the course of one life-altering afternoon, the lives of seven people will change forever: foremost among them police chief Bishop, the estranged father Victor hasnt seen in three years, two protestors struggling to stay true to their non-violent principles as the day descends into chaos, two police officers in the street, and the coolly elegant financial minister from Sri Lanka whose life, as well as his countrys fate, hinges on getting through the angry crowd, out of jail, and to his meeting with the president of the United States.

In this raw and breathtaking novel, Yapa marries a deep rage with a deep humanity, and in doing so casts an unflinching eye on the nature and limits of compassion.

Reader Reviews
  •    Kigagar Manzaneres
    2020
    In late November 1999, thousands of demonstrators gather to protest rising globalization at the World Trade Organization conference in Seattle. Among them, a young traveler named Victor hopes to make money selling marijuana to the protesters and finds himself caught up in the wave of demonstration. Your Heart is a Muscle the Size of a Fist tells the story of that single afternoon through the eyes of seven different people, including Victor’s estranged father, two police officers working to control the crowds, and a Sri Lankan government official determined to meet with other world leaders.

    Chapter-by-chapter multiple perspectives can be a tricky thing, particularly when authors continue to use the technique in unnecessary, even detrimental, ways. Yapa, however, uses his chapters as cameras, allowing the story to circle around a singular event through multiple lenses. The narratives often overlap at crucial points and challenge readers to examine the motives behind seemingly clear decisions.

    “A week, a day, an hour—these were units of time no longer within Victor’s ability to contemplate or feel. The day had shrunk to a morning. Then an hour of street battle. Then fifteen minutes of withering brutality.

    Noon was like a foreign country.”

    Though some of the characters feel a bit muddled—particularly compared to Victor’s vibrancy—Yapa’s gorgeous prose more than makes up for the novel’s slight hiccups. Both intense and eye-opening, Your Heart is a Muscle the Size of a Fist is a fantastic first novel from Sunil Yapa and an incredible start for Little, Brown’s new imprint, Lee Boudreaux Books.

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  •    Dokasa Inabnil
    2020
    Seattle 1999.
    Rarely do I read books that talk about events that happened in my lifetime, but this afternoon I cracked the spine of a new book purchase and found myself looking through many different pairs of eyes during the events of the Seattle protests as the World Trade Organization (WTO) prepares to meet.
    He heard them in the streets saying, "Another world is possible," and beneath his ribs broken and healed and twice broken and healed and thrice broken and healed, he shuddered and thought, God help us. We are mad with hope. Here we come.
    Only covering a few hours, I appreciated the opportunity to receive an understanding of what motivates the protesters, the WTO, and the police. Because it's 19 years later, we get the opportunity as readers to see how quickly nonviolence became something explosive.
    Reply

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