Housebroken by Yael Hedaya
Three Novellas

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Synopsis

In a striking debut, three piercing, powerful novellas that unveil the hazards of love and desire.

The men, women, and even animals in this enthralling collection live at the mercy of their hearts. Young and old, on two legs or four, they grope for love and terness, knowing that all connection is fraught with danger and all relationship random and evanescent. Yet the heart wants what it wants.

The title novella, a wrenching account of the of love, traces a gentle dog's transformation into a vicious beast as the couple who owns him breaks apart. In "The Happiness Game," the tenuous bonds between husband and wife are undermined by black crows and weak hearts, while "Matti" presents a chorus of voices -- doctors, nurses, jilted wife, dying husband -- that recounts an old man's passion for his lover, a fifteen-year-old Lolita.

Wise and deft, tart yet tender, written in supple, beautifully inflected prose, Housebroken navigates the moments of decision, betrayal, longing, and jealousy that torment the souls of wounded lovers.
 

About Yael Hedaya

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Yael Hedaya was born in Jerusalem in 1964. She is a journalist and humor columnist for the Hebrew daily Yediot Aharonot. Housebroken has been translated into Dutch, German, French, and Italian; it is Hedaya's first book to appear in English.
 
Published October 22, 2013 by Metropolitan Books. 321 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Housebroken

Kirkus Reviews

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This collection of three novellas reads like a compendium of literary brat-pack clichés: the oh-so-clever juxtaposition of a dog’s life and the crash-and-burn relationship of its master and mistress in the title story, the cute but aimless parallel of a 30-something’s affair and her 70-year-old p...

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Publishers Weekly

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This story contains some strong writing and fully imagined characters, like Maya's intolerably optimistic friend Noga, who explains, "For men, brains and sadness are a lethal combination," and Maya's mother, whose mixture of helplessness and pluck is finely portrayed.

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