Fiction · Novels · Reviews

Review: A Man Called Ove

Hello friends, happy Friday! I hope you’ve all had a good week. Today I’m going to be posting my review of Fredrik Backman’s novel, A Man Called Ove.

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This is a translated book, translated by Henning Koch, originally written in Swedish.

A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove by: Fredrik Backman: Ove loves rules and principles; he can’t stand that others don’t see things the way he does. When his new neighbours move in, they completely derail any semblance of normality he had. As time goes by and with pure perseverance, his neighbours end up finding themselves embedded into his life more and more. This novel was an emotional whirlwind to read. As far as the plot of this, it was a really well told story; Backman is really good at commanding and captivating his audience and ensuring that they kept reading, even if their main character wasn’t the most pleasant. It felt like there were so many ups and downs in this story that the reader couldn’t help but want to continue to see what was going to happen next. There was always this air of mystery as to what would Ove get himself into. The way that this was told was effective. This story weaves through past and present pretty fluidly, but in a way that wasn’t confusing or chaotic, but rather, it really went with the flow of the storytelling; each piece of flashback had relevance to the present it was flashing back to. For the first half of the book, the reader couldn’t help but really not stand Ove as a character; he’s angry, oh so angry, he’s mean when he doesn’t need to be, his opinion is the only one that is right and everyone else is wrong, and he’s just downright depressing. There were times when, if the story hadn’t been captivating enough, the reader thought about not finishing because our main character, Ove, was just such a negative person. Then there was the constant of him wanting to kill himself, which was such a turn off for the reader. As the novel continued though, things did start to look up as more of the secondary characters were introduced to, what is believed, to mellow Ove out. The secondary characters were all so different and memorable in their own ways that they really enhanced the story. It kind of amazed the reader how much everyone just put up with how Ove was, he never pretended to like anyone, and basically told people how it was, and yet people still came back to him. In the end, the last few chapters really showed how much of a heart of gold Ove had; he was there for people, even if he grumbled and hated it and the reader didn’t complete hate him. Overall, this was an unpredictable yet moving read.

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