Thursday, January 12, 2017

Book Club: A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove
Fredrik Backman

I am posting A Man Called Ove a bit late. I read it about three weeks ago. So pardon if it is a bit sketchy. I will try my best to give you the highlights shared by my book club as well as my thoughts.

When you first pick up the novel. You fear the novel is going in one direction. Surprised to say it goes differently. Each chapter is named with a cute picture of a tool.  The novel is a wonderful read. It is a breath of fresh air. Each chapters are short. The direction the novel takes when he is an "old man", to when he was young.  The way the author does flashback is very different than other books I have read. Perhaps because the author is Swedish, rather than from the U.S.

I loved reading, A Man Called Ove. The novel opens when he is much older. Then goes back to when he was growing up.  As I was reading the book I thought he was much older than 59. I expected him to be much older perhaps in his 70's.

Ove wants to end his life. He thinks there is nothing to look forward to in life after his wife died.  Each time he tries something, or someone interferes with him committing suicide.  In comes his foreign neighbors that rams his mailbox. Once this happens nothing is the same again.  Situation after situation prevent him from ending his life. Ove is rigid. He can't think anything outside of the box. He follows the rules. He can get very angry when other people don't think like he does. He face looks mad.

He has lived in the small community for years in Sweden. He seems not to like his community, or the people in it. Always fighting with someone. But, then it seems after awhile the community comes to love, and adore him. But, also Ove comes to mellow with his neighbors, and love them. The community seems to embrace Ove, and watch out for him.

After his wife passes away. For years he lives alone, and lonely. Then a cat appears at his door step. He hates that cat. Til he finally takes the cat in and falls for the cat. This is just one of the situations. There is more to the story about the cat. But, I don't want to spoil it.

Ove, is so rigid, the story is so funny. He lost his friendship with a friend over  a car! Ove only likes the Saab. Then his friend buys a Toyota. Their friendship is lost because of a car!! There is some serious parts. Especially when he's friend becomes ill. In Sweden, the country can take a citizen and put him away in a nursing home. Ove tries to help him avoid this happening.

This is definately a feel-good, uplifting book that you can't forget about Ove.  I don't want to go in the specifics that will make you laugh, cry, smile, etc. Rather, just letting you know( my readers), that it is worth the read.

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