August 2, 2017

[REVIEW] A Man Called Ove

title: A Man Called Ove
author: Fredrik Backman, Henning Koch (translator)
genre: adult fiction, contemporary
publish: May 5, 2015 by Washington Square Press
purchase: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository | Fully Booked
rating: 5 / 5 stars
At first sight, Ove is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet, a curmudgeon with staunch principles, strict routines, and a short-fuse. People think him bitter, and he  thinks himeslf surrounded by idiots. 
Ove's well-ordered solitary world gets shake-up one November morning with the appearance of new neighbors, a chatty young couple and their two boisterous daughters, who announce their arrival by accidentally flattening Ove's mailbox with their U-Haul. What follows is a heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unlikely friendships, and a community's unexpected reassessment of the one person they thought they had all figured out. 
A word-of-mouth bestseller that has caused a sensation across Europe, Fredrik Backman's irresistible novel about the angry old man next dorr is an uplifting exploration of the unreliability of fist impressions and a gentle reminder that life is sweeter when it is shaed with other people. 
easily one of my fave 2017 reads!

After reading this, I got into one of those moments when I keep on asking myself: Why did I never read this as soon as I had it?. I've only seen A Man Called Ove a couple of times in the book blogging community and I seriously think it needs to be known by everyone.

You miss the strangest things when you lose someone. Little things. Smiles. The way she turned over in her sleep. Even repainting a room for her. -p56

Ove is a grumpy man who firmly believes in all things old-fashioned and somehow, I'd say he's quite close-minded. However, I can also say that after reading this book, Ove is a man who can't stop himself from helping a person in need. He's a man with a big heart and everyone in the neighborhood thought him as a strict, grumpy man who'd rather not have anything to do with anyone -- well, he'd rather not but he also can't help but lend a hand whenever he can because everyone's a bunch of idiots (lol).

A Man Called Ove revolves around the intervention of Ove's new neighbors in his life. Ove who's given up on life meets this family who kept on pushing themselves into him. It's part heartwarming, part amusing, and part heartbreaking.

A times comes in every man's life when he decides what sort of man he is going to be. Whether he is the kind who lets other people tread on him, or not. -p112-113

Backman's writing and Koch's translation is so great. The narration is in third-person and it's packed with humor and heartwarming moments that's too difficult to put down. I have to admit that I was easily sold after reading the first chapter.

Throughout the book, I get to know Ove. I get to know the times before he met his wife, the times when they were together, and the time when she had to leave the world. It's those heartbreaking moments and those moments when he firmly stood his ground that made me like him even more as a person.

Death is a strange thing. People live their whole lives as if it does not exist, and yet it's often one of the greatest motivations for living. -p325

Ove somehow reminded me of A.J. Fikry from The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry which is also one of my fave reads. They're both heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. Both have grumpy main characters who met people that moved them into appreciating life. Also, both books brought me to tears (buckets of tears) in the end.

OVERALL, A Man Called Ove is a highly recommended underappreciated book. It's a book about appreciating life, the people around you, and learning that opening your hearts to people is the best way to living a happy life.

let's connect!


  1. This is our book club read this month and looking forward to reading it.

  2. YES!! I listened and it was one of my top ten. I even made my hubby watch the movie with subtitles!

  3. Great review! I loved the movie - and I know I'll have to try the book. :)

    Lauren @ Always Me


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