This is a book that I'd managed to ignore for almost a year. When I keep seeing the same title over and over again on the book websites and blogs that I frequent, I tend to go into avoidance mode. Hype makes me suspicious. It wasn't until recently when someone whose opinion I trust recommended this book that I decided to give it another look. Am I ever glad that I did.
A Man Called Ove runs the gamut of emotions: laughter, exasperation, anger, compassion, fear, love, loss. Those new neighbors of his force him to get involved in something other than his own tunnel-vision plans, and as Ove constantly gets yanked into the lives of others, his backstory is slowly revealed. That backstory makes all the difference in the world because we get to see Ove as a child, as a teenager, as a young man-- and we see why Ove became so mean-spirited.
Some may dismiss A Man Called Ove as a simple "feel good" story. Yes, it does make the reader feel good, but that assessment sells this book short. It is a wonderful characterization and examination of a man's life. It just may get some of us to re-evaluate the curmudgeons in our own lives.
I was stunned to learn that this is a debut novel because it certainly doesn't read like one. I could ramble enthusiastically for several more paragraphs, but I won't. If you've been avoiding Fredrik Backman's book because of the hype, stop. Pick it up and read it. My only warning? Have a family-size box of tissues close at hand when you near the end. You will be crying. Crying for sad... and crying for happy.
An absolutely delightful read! A grumpy man with principles and a bigger heart than he is willing to show. I loved the characters. It is humorous, heart warming and bittersweet, but thoroughly enjoyable!
Sometimes you take a book to bed and finish it and say, "well that was a waste of time". Sometimes you say, "gosh I loved this book". Then once in awhile, not very often, you say nothing and silently slip it under your pillow, turn out the light and think how sometimes a book was meant for you at that time in your life. Ove made me laugh out loud. Ove made me wanna sock a couple "white shirts". And Ove made my mascara run.....ALL OVER MY FACE. Ove reminded me to never overlook even those who seem to need no one. This is an author I will always watch for. Ove wasn't just a story, it was also a lesson in life that we all could use a reminder of. I loved Ove.
Am I glad I decided to give this book a try. I fell in love with Ove immediately. He's a grumpy, but lovable old man with a big heart, but you have to read the book to find out just how big it is!
This book has everything...it's hilarious, laugh out load funny, sad; you'll smile and cry at the same time, LOVED it!
I finished this book several days ago, and I've been thinking about it ever since. Some books just stay with you once you finish them, and this book is definitely one of those.
When I first started reading it, I wondered how I was going to get all the way through the story. Ove is a total curmudgeon, and has some very colorful names for everyone around him. He has no filter, and he is in a hurry to finish living. I thought the book would be depressing, but somehow, it wasn't.
I loved the different characters in the story. The author really fleshes everyone out. The story flips back and forth between Ove's past and present, and the author gradually explains how Ove came to be where he is in life and why he feels the way he does about things. It is definitely a book that I would describe as a "slow burn". It gradually builds and reveals the relationship between the characters. I never expected some of them from the way the story began.
The book has quite a few funny moments. Some made me laugh out loud. It also has some incredibly sweet ones. I very much enjoyed watching the transformation that Ove goes through as the story progresses. I can count the number of times on one hand that a book has made me cry. This book had me sobbing at the end. It has been a long time since any book has made me feel such a connection to the characters. I will definitely read another book by this author.