A Man Called Ove: Book Review by Dinh.
On the exterior, Ove looks like an old grumpy man. His life is made of strict principles and routines. His daily routines involves inspection of the neighborhood, making sure bikes should be where bikes are suppose to be, and noting any strange or new cars around.
Ove is lonely without his wife Sonja who passed away a few years back. He has no motivation to live and plans to take care of this by killing himself.
One day, a young couple with 2 young children move into a house next door. Parvaneh, and the Lanky One, and their kids disrupt Ove’s life by barging in, and changing his view of his life and give him a purpose to live.
This debut novel is the first book that I have read from Fredrik Backman and I love it! His other works include My Grandma Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry (2013), and Britt-Marie Was Here (2014).
This is a fantastic book! I found A Man Called Ove to be very entertaining, comical and heartwarming.
Right from the beginning it got me hooked.
The movie of A Man Called Ove is open at the movies today. I would like to see this movie just to see if they did a good job with the adaptation. (Usually I find that books are better than the movie though.)
What I enjoyed the most about this book is the combination of the story of Ove’s life and the numerous humorous scenes dotted throughout.
The book starts off with Ove trying to buy an Ipad. Ove does not have a clue about technology. You can imagine an old man like Ove in electronic store trying to buy an Ipad and just not knowing what he’s getting into. It’s comical.
The beginning got me interest in Ove right away. I wanted to find out more about him and I liked how it made me laugh. I could just imagine that stereotypical scene with an older generation person trying to buy a modern gadget such as an Ipad.
This chapter’s title- A Man Called Ove and a Lanky One Who Can’t Open a Window Without Falling Off a Ladder, is already catchy and you can imagine the humor in this!
There are funny parts whenever Ove interacts with people.
Great Cast of Characters
There were some great characters in this book that made the story enjoyable and believable.
Although Ove is depicted as the grumpy old sod, we find that he’s not like that on the inside.
Though Ove is terse and rude, we find that his past is littered with heroic action that depicts a man of courage and kindness. His action speaks volumes about his character and you begin to love this man for what he does and not his harshness. Ove is the sort of man that runs into a burning house to save someone because that’s what the right thing to do.
Ove is a man that you end up liking because he has quirks. Under the strict and grumpy old man is a brave man who stands up for what is right. I particularly like the part when Ove decides the sort of man that he’s going to be.
Sonja, Ove’s wife is also another great character in this book. They have a very touching story. Sonja character is the opposite to Ove’s. She likes books, cats, and dancing, and is full of life. He doesn’t like any of that.
“All the things Ove’s wife has bought are ‘lovely’ or ‘homey.’ Everything Ove buys is useful. Stuff with a function. He keeps them in two different boxes, one big and one small…People don’t have useful things anymore. People just have shit.”
Ove is night and Sonja is day. Yet, their marriage for almost 40 years, show how much they loved each other.
Ove is a man of few words so he shows Sonja how much he loves her by building a bookcase for her. When she got hurt in an accident and could no longer walk, he re-did the kitchen so she could use it in her wheelchair.
I liked the way we find out about Ove’s life in bits and pieces, and how he got to be where he is. Sonja was his life. She played an important role in helping him with what he wanted to to the most in his life.
Parvaneh is another character in this book that gave good insight to Ove’s interesting life. Pregnant and in need of help, she understands what Ove is like and tries to get him to be more involved in helping her and the neighbors.
My final thoughts:
This was a very enjoyable read with some touching moments and some funny parts. This quirky man called Ove will pull your heart strings as you discover the man inside the grumpy exterior. You will not look at an old grumpy man the same way!
I highly recommend you to read this lovely and charming book!
Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought about it!
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