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Fixed on Fiction

A Man Called Ove

In August, Fixed on Fiction met to discuss A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.

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.

-Summary courtesy of Goodreads.

All in all, A Man Called Ove was extremely well-received among our group members. Every single person gave it a thumbs up vote. Here are some of comments readers made while discussing their reaction to this month’s selection:

  • I loved it! Easy to read. Funny right away…a light story about unusual people.
  • Inside he’s such a teddy bear. I thought he was an endearing old man, not a curmudgeon at all. He doesn’t have time for nonsense and he’s set in his ways.
  • I was more sympathetic to Ove than the other characters. You can’t blame him for being unhappy if he’s so set in his ways.
  • Thumbs up- I certainly wanted to laugh and cry throughout the book.
  • I liked it. I thought I would hate it because I hate sentimental books. The right amount of humor contrasted with darkness. Ove was such a good guy…and I also loved the bits with the cat.
  • It took me a while to get into it, but I laughed out loud. Especially loved that he referred to the three-year-old and the seven-year-old as the three-year-old and the seven-year-old. He wanted to be needed- that filled his life.
  • It look me a long time to get into it. Reminded me of The 100-year-old Man who Climbed out the Window and Disappeared. I missed these characters after I finished the book.

Other titles FoF is enjoying-

These are simply some of the highlights from our discussion. Feel free to leave additional thoughts on A Man Called Ove in the comments section below


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