A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
First of all, this book should come with a public health warning. Within the first 20 pages, I went through every emotion and instantly fell for Ove. I’ll admit, at times, I wanted to put the book in the freezer (for all you Friends fans out there), when it all got a bit too much, for both myself and Ove, but I was gripped and ended up reading the book in just a weekend.
The story follows Ove, a 59-year-old man who is seemingly grumpy and resentful of others on a path of finding new friendships and a new outlook on life for his immediate future. From the outside, Ove is a man who is a man of few words, some incredibly scathing insults and of high morals, however, delving deeper into his life, there is so much more to uncover.
"Ove's couldn't give a damn about people jogging....Either they walk fast or they run slowly, that's what jogger's do. It's a fourty-year-old man's way of telling the world that he can't do anything right. Is it really necessary to dress up as a fourteen-year-old Romanian gymnast in order to be able to do it?"
The book touches upon so much, which is all encapsulated by the incredible love and acceptance between Ove, and many of the other characters in the book.
Blackman writing is simply stunning and the way he manages to subtly describes each person and situation is amazing. Whilst at times the story took predictably turns, it was all part of the charm and actually made you feel like you understood the characters even more.
I instantly connected with Ove and recognized him as my lovely Grandad or Grumps as he is more fondly known. The love Ove has for his wife is mirrored in life by the love my grandparents have for each other. Maybe this connection was the reason why I loved the book so much, but, then maybe it was Fredrik’s magic and actually, everyone who will read or has read the book could make a close connection with one of the characters
Overall the book was wonderful, a delightful, if at times traumatic, way to get lost for a weekend. I can’t wait to meet Fredrik’s other characters and books.