A Heart in a Body in the World: Reviews « Deb Caletti
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A Heart in a Body in the World: Reviews

“The title of Deb Caletti’s masterful new book is apt. You feel your own heart expanding in your chest as you come to understand just why Annabelle is running. This novel is full of sorrow and rage, but also beauty and hope and so, so much wisdom. Annabelle’s story will resonate deeply with so many women that it’s tempting to call it a novel of the time. But really, this is one for the ages.”
—Gayle Forman, author of the #1 bestseller If I Stay

“Caletti’s novel dazzlingly maps the mind-blowing ferocity and endurance of an athlete who uses her physical body to stake claim to  the respect of the nation.”
—E. Lockhart, author of We Were Liars and Genuine Fraud

“Deb Caletti is the kind of writer who can effortlessly unite laughter and tragedy in one sentence…in fact, in almost every sentence. A Heart in a Body in the World is more than bittersweet. It is so authentic in its moments of grief, so witty and clear-eyed in its moments of hopefulness–and so true to its hero’s voice–that it will nestle inside your brain as well as your heart.”
—Jodi Lynn Anderson, award-winning author of Midnight at the Electric

★ “Annabelle Agnelli runs from Seattle to Washington, D.C., in an attempt to outrun a traumatizing incident that occurred less than a year earlier. Eighteen-year-old Seattleite Annabelle is hardworking, pretty, and seemingly has it all: good grades, great friends, and a loving family. Following a tragedy, however, Annabelle is wracked with guilt over a crime she did not commit but feels responsible for, and as a result, she suffers from severe anxiety and PTSD. The only thing she feels she can do now is run. Joined by her Italian immigrant grandfather, Grandpa Ed, in his RV and cheered on by a self-appointed publicity team comprising her 13-year-old brother, Malcolm, and her friends Zach (indicated East Asian by his surname) and Olivia (presumed white), Annabelle runs across the nation in an attempt to come to terms with the event perpetrated by a person whom she dubs The Taker. Written in the present tense, Caletti’s (What’s Become of Her, 2017, etc.) narrative conveys a sense of urgency and immediacy as she presents issues familiar to many young women, including rape culture, violence, and the internalization of guilt and social critique. A timely novel with strong secondary characters that emphasizes the complexities of the heart and doing what is right. (Fiction. 14-adult)”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)