In 2020, I was lucky enough to receive Anxious People as an ARC. That was my first book of Backman’s, and I was blown away, so of course, I want to work my way through his back catalog. However, I don’t think any review could do A Man Called Ove justice. Both funny and heartbreaking, I fluctuated emotions so many times within each chapter. Ove’s life draws you in, and you can’t help but feel invested in his life. Repeatedly, I would text my spouse to let him know that Ove had failed that day.
Backman has encapsulated the pain we feel with loss so wholly with Ove. But he’s brought us so much light in the helpers everywhere around us. A Man Called Ove won’t be an easy read for some readers, but there is so much joy and light that it outweighs the tough spots. This is an absolutely beautiful read, and I cannot recommend it enough.
About the Book:
A grumpy yet loveable man finds his solitary world turned on its head when a boisterous young family moves in next door.
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 must Ove be bitter just because he doesn’t walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time?
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.