For years, I had heard amazing things about this book from everyone who read it. It also seemed like it was a popular choice for book clubs. I have a tendency to avoid books/ tv shows which seem like a hype because I constantly feel like I will be disappointed because of all the wonderful reviews. So for many years, A Man Called Ove (pronounced Ooo-weh) sat in my bookshelf untouched. Last year, I got stuck in a major book slump. I just could not find myself interested in any book I picked up. I would read the first few pages/chapters and completely lose interest. I was scouring my bookshelf for any book which my mind would like to stick with and be interested in. I decided to try A Man Called Ove.
I am so glad I did. I cannot say that I liked Ove from chapter one but something about his character made me want to keep reading. His rather eccentric character which isn’t very likable at first is still very interesting. What kept me reading was trying to understand what happened to him that made him the way he was? I wanted to know more about his life and the major events in them to understand this strange curmudgeon better. The more I read, I realized how truly sad he was and his rough exterior didn’t translate to his being a terrible person but quiet the contrary. I loved seeing this man navigate life in a society which values appearances and niceties so much.
The writing in the book is humorous and had me laughing out loud many a times! I also really loved how Backman explores grief and how it effects individuals in very different ways. I absolutely enjoyed this book and am glad Ove helped me stick with a book finish it when I was having the hardest time reading.
My Rating: 4.5
Quotes I liked:
He was a man of black and white. And she was color. All the color he had.
We fear it, yet most of us fear more than anything that it may take someone other than ourselves. For the greatest fear of death is always that it will pass us by. And leave us there alone.
We always think there’s enough time to do things with other people. Time to say things to them. And then something happens and then we stand there holding on to words like ‘if’.
People said Ove saw the world in black and white. But she was color. All the color he had.
I hope these quotes convince you to pick up this book if you haven’t already read it.
Read this if you like: Contemporary fiction, Humor, Heartwarming stories
Title: A Man Called Ove
Author: Fredrik Backman
Publication Date: August 27, 2012
Synopsis: 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.