Review: A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

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 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.

When a young, energetic family moves in next door, grumpy, set-in-his-ways Ove is forced to change his daily routines and sets off a chain of life-altering events for Ove and everyone involved.

This was my second Fredik Backman novel, which had been on my TBR list since before it was published, and I’m so glad I finally took the time to read it. I loved Ove and couldn’t help but smile at his crankiness, but also have my heart broken by his story.

Ove was the perfect blend of grumpy-old-man and sweet and sentimental. While reading the story I kept going back and forth with his behavior from thinking it was hilarious to crazy to “that makes total sense”. When Parvaneh and her family move in and shake everything up, I couldn’t help but smile to myself and wonder where it would lead. Parvaneh, a small, fiery woman who wasn’t afraid to tell Ove when he was being rude, was the perfect balance to the neighborhood.

A Man Called Ove pulled on my heartstrings. It’s a delightful, fun, heartwarming story of an old man and a neighborhood that comes together after heartbreak and loss. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a wonderful weekend read, something to put a smile on their face, or a story with a main character that will most likely remind them of someone dear.



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