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A Man Called Ove: A Novel Paperback – May 5, 2015
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From the Publisher
"In turns moving and funny. . . I wager that you’ll soon fall in love with Ove and be deeply moved by his situation, and after spending time with him, may perhaps gaze at the world around you with a little more empathy than when you turned the first page." -- Eric Larson
“Even the most serious reader of fiction needs light relief, and for that afternoon when all you want is charm, this is the perfect book.", San Francisco Chronicle
"A magnificent homage to humanity and to the possibility of friendship and faith in long-lost love. It covers a lot of ground: marriage, love, race, class, division, gentrification. It's one of those good stories that connects." -- James McBride
"An inspiring affirmation of love for life and acceptance of people for their essence and individual quirks...a perfect selection for book clubs...bittersweet, tender, often wickedly humorous and almost certain to elicit tears.”, BookBrowse.com
"A light hearted, deeply moving novel about a grumpy but loveable curmudgeon who finds his solitary world turned on its head when a boisterous young family moves in next door. This quirky debut is a thoughtful and charming exploration of the impact one life has on countless others—and an absolute delight.", CBS Local
"Readers seeking feel-good tales with a message will rave about the rantings of this solitary old man with a singular outlook. If there was an award for 'Most Charming Book of the Year,' this first novel by a Swedish blogger-turned-overnight-sensation would win hands down.", Booklist, Starred Review
“A funny crowd-pleaser that serves up laughs to accompany a thoughtful reflection on loss and love… The author writes with winning charm.”, Publishers Weekly, starred review
“This charming debut novel by Backman should find a ready audience with English-language readers… hysterically funny… wry descriptions, excellent pacing… In the contest of Most Winning Combination, it would be hard to beat grumpy Ove and his hidden,generous heart.”, Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
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"For more than fifteen minutes he stood waiting for her at the station in his tight-fitting suit and his new-polished shoes. He was skeptical about people who came late. 'If you can’t depend on someone being on time, you shouldn’t trust ’em with anything more important either,' he used to mutter when people came dribbling along with their time cards three or four minutes late, as if this didn’t matter. As if the railway line would just lie there waiting for them in the morning and not have something to do."
Every sentence in this book is imbued with characterization and style; every word is a brushstroke in the painting of Ove as not only a curmudgeon, but a survivor of hard things, a principled man, a hard worker, a dedicated Saab driver, and one of those loyal-to-the-death-but-you-wouldn’t-know-it-to-talk-to-him kind of people.
And, unlike most adult-genre books, especially ones about old people, there is something interesting or amusing or soulful on almost every page. The pacing and plot weaving are impeccable. It’s truly a treasure to read.
I'm so gushy right now with love for this book!!! I'm never this gushy. Maybe I should have given myself 24 hours before reviewing this. I recommend this book to everyone. 1,000,000 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️!!! I've read Beartown and loved it too and just ordered (and pre-ordered) all of Backman's books. Wow! Just an amazing reading experience. I don't know what to read next because I fear whatever the book, it will pale in comparison.
Top international reviews
In the opening scenes, he is yelling at an iPad sales clerk, like an irate elder man who can’t get with times. But when you learn everything that led to it, you’ll find so many connections. Ove has so many levels to him you will lose count trying to guess what he might do in any given situation. His reactions will annoy you, irritate you beyond belief. But gradually you’ll see the stones turning. OVE is a man of order of life. A man of very few relationships, but the very few he loved, he can build an empire for them. He liked to understand, learn and create things by himself. Like what he thought, he could do. The anecdotes and flashbacks spread throughout the story tell us how he came to be the man he is; wonderful yet complex.
It’s not what the story is about, but what it leaves with you that makes you love the book.
No spoilers but this is the most touching and lovely heart warming book I have ever read - I loved it!!
There are many times throughout the book I laughed out loud, especially at Ove’s conviction of how things should be and his tetchiness with those who don’t see things his way. It is also a very sad and heart-warming story as Ove deals with the loss of his wife, loneliness and just how communities can be socially uplifting and rewarding.
So without spoilers, Ove is a grumpy old rhymes with odd, and with good reason.
From an era when pride in a job well done and not blowing your own trumpet, Ove was raised in a house of few words, without much in life, but what he had always seemed to be taken from him.
Long story short, he moans, but is a good guy, trying to get by in a worldgonemad. Misunderstood by most, but neverone to not help, as long as he can moan about it.
This is my first book from the author, but certainly won't be the last.
One of those rare books you mourn it ending, but will read again and again over the years.
What you waiting for? Buy it now!
Ove reminded me of the British TV character Victor Meldrew from One Foot in the Grave. A grumpy middle-aged (59 years is NOT old!) man who adheres to his idiosyncratic routine, enjoys his own company and his own high moral standards and rules that are definitely not there to be broken under any circumstances. He is also fighting his own devastatingly sad loss. However, lurking beneath the seemingly hard facade, lies a very kind hearted man with a heart of gold and old fashioned values....
A quirky read and a love story with a difference that will have you laughing and crying in equal measures.
This is an interesting story, a very different story, and one that grows on you. To all the Oves out there - there's hope for you yet!
Thus inarticulate, and unschooled in accepted social graces, his contempt for the perceived stupidities of others sometimes finds expression in temper storms. All of which hides a centre so soft and a heart so kind that only those closest to him manage to fathom his depths.
It's an odd little book but thoroughly engrossing and 'un-put-downable' (that really should be a proper word !. I actually cried at the end of the story and I think the last time that happened I was a teenager (so not a teenager now). Buy it, Read it, Love it.
Ove is not perfect, nobody can be, but this book should give strength to those of us who are terribly flawed and need the love of people around us, so that we may decide to keep breathing. A quite beautiful piece of writing which has been translated with extraordinary skill and precision. Praise to Mr. Koch for his work. You may indeed not enjoy this book, and if not, I feel sorry for you. Not in a patronising way at all, I hope you find enjoyment elsewhere. But, to the vast majority of people who did like it, my God it is damned good isn’t it? Thank you so much for lending me your imagination for a few hours Mr Backman.
I cried many tears and I am a hairy man.
This book is one of the best books that I have ever read.
It remains honest to itself all the way through.
There are so many jaw dropping brilliant paragraphs.
I will be buying this book after reading it on my Kindle.
Thank you Fredrick, your imagination and words have enriched my Soul.
I heard about this book a while ago, I didn't think it could be as good as all of those reviews.
It wasn't, it was better.
This was such a sweet book. My eyes were wet with hot tears every now and then while I was reading this book. I loved it so much. I cried a lot over a book after a pretty long time. I had some minor issues with some portions like that of "bent person" which the author refers to rather than Ove, and I was a little bored in the beginning with Ove being too judgemental, but I would choose to ignore all such fallacies because the ending was beautiful and I cried and cried until I found the drops of tears smearing three to four pages in one go. This was an unexpected read.
From the start Ove made me smile with his grumpy but caring manner. Having set the character in the first character it seemed that the author then sat back for the rest of the book as Ove didn't seem to develop. Everything around him was setup to make him seem more extreme and never felt authentic which was a shame - so many people in the real world are like Ove and much more could have been made to make him seem authentic. Having set up a few characters who were ridiculous then the author was going to have to work very hard to win me round and he didn't.
I hope that some people saw humour in this book as there was the potential for a lot but I didn't see much.
I did like the chapter headings and doodles at the start of this chapter. I've seen this used to good effect in other books and it is a good device.