Thursday, February 23, 2017

Audiobook Review: A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
July 15, 2014
337 pages
Genre: Contemporary Fiction

A grumpy yet loveable man finds his solitary world turned on its head when a boisterous young family moves in next door.

Meet Ove. He's a curmudgeon, the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him the bitter neighbor from hell, but must Ove be bitter just because he doesn't walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time?

Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove's mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship, and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul. All of which will change one cranky old man and a local residents' association to their very foundations.

I absolutely loved this book. I loved everything about it (except that Ove was 59; I imagined him older). This story takes us on a journey of Ove's past and present - the tragedies of his past, the struggles of his present. He comes off as this miserable, grumpy, dislikable man. But the layers he wears on the outside don't necessarily reflect the man inside. And I dare anyone not to fall in love with Ove. I sure did.

I can't even begin to discuss all the things I loved about this story. There are so many layers to Ove. But there are also so many integral characters that bring Ove's story to life. This odd community formed around Ove, and I loved the part that each person played. I found myself laughing out loud, and also tearing up. This journey was so beautiful, I recommend it to everyone.

On a side note, I listened to the audiobook, and the narrator was wonderful. 'A Man Called Ove' is a new favorite of mine.

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