LitSnap - Fiction and NonFiction Book Reviews

Buy Now - Kindle or Print
Add To Wishlist - Kindle or Print

No book cover found

How Should A Person Be? by Sheila Heti.. I’m in favor of meta-everything these days. Who’s to say what’s made up and what’s real? Try this novel on for size, even though you can Google some of the characters.

Joel Gardner, LitSnap Editor

"Heti, who edits and conducts interviews for The Believer, once asked the art critic Dave Hickey in that magazine whether he thought humor was “a very important element of art.” “I love Serra,” she added, “but he’s not funny.” Sheila makes the same remark, nearly verbatim, in “How Should a Person Be?” She and Margaux have just come to a shared conclusion “about what you need to know in writing and what you need to know in art,” namely, that “you have to know where the funny is, and if you know where the funny is, you know everything.” I do not think this novel knows everything, but Sheila Heti does know something about how many of us, right now, experience the world, and she has gotten that knowledge down on paper, in a form unlike any other novel I can think of."

The New York Times

"Heti’s book is so boldly original, each sentence so gorgeously rendered, that the distinction between exceptional novel and exceptional memoir seems irrelevant."


Author bio: Sheila Heti (born 25 December 1976) is a writer. Heti, who was born in Toronto, Ontario, studied art history and philosophy at the University of Toronto and playwriting at the National Theatre School of Canada. She works as Interviews Editor at The Believer and writes a column on acting for Maisonneuve. Heti's novel, Ticknor, was released in 2005. It borrows as its main characters William Hickling Prescott and George Ticknor, though it alters the facts of their lives. It was published by House of Anansi in Canada, Farrar, Straus & Giroux in the United States, and Éditions Phébus in France. Her short story collection, The Middle Stories (2001), was published by House of Anansi in Canada when she was twenty-four, and by McSweeney's in the United States, and translated into German, French, Spanish and Dutch. More information can be found here:

Book Details: General Fiction; (306 pp. Kindle/Print editions)

Publisher Website:

© 2011 LitSnap LLC