Cover image for
Title:
A man called Ove
Author(s):
Backman, Fredrik, 1981-
ISBN/ISSN:
1410472922

9781410472922
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
Man som heter Ove. English
Edition:
Large print edition.
Physical Description:
477 pages (large print) ; 23 cm.
Series:
Thorndike Press large print core

Thorndike Press large print core series.
General Note:
Translated from the Swedish.

Translation of: Man som heter Ove.

"Translation by Henning Koch"--Title page verso.
Abstract:
A curmudgeon hides a terrible personal loss beneath a cranky and short-tempered exterior while clashing with new neighbors, a boisterous family whose chattiness and habits lead to unexpected friendship.
Added Author:
Pub Date:
Thorndike Press, [2014]

©2013
Holds:

Available:*

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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Floating Collection - Houston Public Library Adult Large print Large print book BACKM
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Summary

Summary

In this bestselling and delightfully quirky debut novel from Sweden, 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.
A feel-good story in the spirit of "The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry "and "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand," Fredrik Backman's novel about the angry old man next door is a thoughtful and charming exploration of the profound impact one life has on countless others.


Author Notes

Carl Fredrik Backman is a Swedish columnist who grew up in Helsingborg. He has been writing for Helsingborgs Dagblad and Moore Magazine. He debuted in 2012 with the novel A Man Called Ove. He is also the author of My grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry. Both were number one bestsellers in his native Sweden and have been published around the world in more than twenty-five languages. His title, Beartown, made The New York Times Best Seller List in 2017.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

*Starred Review* At 59, Ove is a grumble Gus of the first degree. Rules are made to be followed, signs are meant to be obeyed, and don't even get him started about computers and mobile phones. In truth, Ove has been this way his whole life, but he's gotten worse in the last four years since his wife, Sonia, died, taking with her all the color in a world Ove sees as black-and-white. Ove has decided life without Sonia is not worth living and plans to join her in the next world. But a young couple and their two children (a third is on the way) move in next door, his oldest friend and most feared enemy is about to be forcibly removed to a nursing home, and a street-scarred cat insinuates itself into his life. Suddenly, Ove's suicide plans get delayed as he helps solve neighborly crises large and small. Though Ove's dark mission mitigates any treacly upstaging by animals and small children, readers seeking feel-good tales with a message will rave about the rantings of this solitary old man with a singular outlook. If there was an award for Most Charming Book of the Year, this first novel by a Swedish blogger-turned-overnight-sensation would win hands down.--Haggas, Carol Copyright 2014 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

In this Swedish bestseller, Ove is a lovably miserable neighborhood curmudgeon-think a cross between Up's Carl Fredricksen and Parks and Recreation's Ron Swanson-who spends his days inspecting his community and criticizing others, judging each by how closely he follows rules and his choice of automobile (Ove cannot reason with BMW drivers). After his handicapped wife dies and he is forced to retire from his job, Ove decides he's ready to leave the world behind. But every time he tries to off himself, he's interrupted-first by his new neighbor, the pregnant Parvaneh; then by Parvaneh's clumsy husband, Patrick; Anita, the wife of Ove's former best friend; Jimmy, Ove's overweight neighbor; Adrian, the neighborhood mailman; and finally a mangy feline Ove calls "Cat Annoyance." Ove continuously pushes his demise from one day to the next, and, as time passes, these characters slowly weave themselves into his life, offering Ove a chance at rebirth. The debut novel from journalist Backman is a fuzzy crowd-pleaser that serves up laughs to accompany a thoughtful reflection on loss and love. Though Ove's antics occasionally feel repetitive, the author writes with winning charm. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Library Journal Review

In this first novel from Swedish novelist Backman, a stereotypical grumpy old man, Ove, finds his quiet life of solitude slipping away when a young family moves in next door. Ove is the kind of man who yells at kids to get off his lawn and is the bane of the local residents' association. He may come across as gruff and bitter, but behind the unpleasant exterior is a dignified man with a story of love and heartbreak. The new neighbors and a scruffy cat may be the perfect combination to break Ove out of his shell and help him truly to start living. This adorable tale starts slowly but quickly gathers speed as Ove's neighbors start testing his patience and upending his sad routine. George Newbern narrates beautifully. VERDICT Witty and full of heart, this is a tale with broad appeal.-Erin Cataldi, Johnson Cty. P.L., Franklin, IN (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Excerpts

Excerpts

A Man Called Ove 1 A MAN CALLED OVE BUYS A COMPUTER THAT IS NOT A COMPUTER Ove is fifty-nine. He drives a Saab. He's the kind of man who points at people he doesn't like the look of, as if they were burglars and his forefinger a policeman's flashlight. He stands at the counter of a shop where owners of Japanese cars come to purchase white cables. Ove eyes the sales assistant for a long time before shaking a medium-sized white box at him. "So this is one of those O-Pads, is it?" he demands. The assistant, a young man with a single-digit body mass index, looks ill at ease. He visibly struggles to control his urge to snatch the box out of Ove's hands. "Yes, exactly. An iPad. Do you think you could stop shaking it like that . . . ?" Ove gives the box a skeptical glance, as if it's a highly dubious sort of box, a box that rides a scooter and wears tracksuit pants and just called Ove "my friend" before offering to sell him a watch. "I see. So it's a computer, yes?" The sales assistant nods. Then hesitates and quickly shakes his head. "Yes . . . or, what I mean is, it's an iPad. Some people call it a 'tablet' and others call it a 'surfing device.' There are different ways of looking at it. . . ." Ove looks at the sales assistant as if he has just spoken backwards, before shaking the box again. "But is it good, this thing?" The assistant nods confusedly. "Yes. Or . . . How do you mean?" Ove sighs and starts talking slowly, articulating his words as if the only problem here is his adversary's impaired hearing. "Is. It. Goooood? Is it a good computer?" The assistant scratches his chin. "I mean . . . yeah . . . it's really good . . . but it depends what sort of computer you want." Ove glares at him. "I want a computer! A normal bloody computer!" Silence descends over the two men for a short while. The assistant clears his throat. "Well . . . it isn't really a normal computer. Maybe you'd rather have a . . ." The assistant stops and seems to be looking for a word that falls within the bounds of comprehension of the man facing him. Then he clears his throat again and says: ". . . a laptop?" Ove shakes his head wildly and leans menacingly over the counter. "No, I don't want a 'laptop.' I want a computer." The assistant nods pedagogically. "A laptop is a computer." Ove, insulted, glares at him and stabs his forefinger at the counter. "You think I don't know that!" Another silence, as if two gunmen have suddenly realized they have forgotten to bring their pistols. Ove looks at the box for a long time, as though he's waiting for it to make a confession. "Where does the keyboard pull out?" he mutters eventually. The sales assistant rubs his palms against the edge of the counter and shifts his weight nervously from foot to foot, as young men employed in retail outlets often do when they begin to understand that something is going to take considerably more time than they had initially hoped. "Well, this one doesn't actually have a keyboard." Ove does something with his eyebrows. "Ah, of course," he splutters. "Because you have to buy it as an 'extra,' don't you?" "No, what I mean is that the computer doesn't have a separate keyboard. You control everything from the screen." Ove shakes his head in disbelief, as if he's just witnessed the sales assistant walking around the counter and licking the glass-fronted display cabinet. "But I have to have a keyboard. You do understand that?" The young man sighs deeply, as if patiently counting to ten. "Okay. I understand. In that case I don't think you should go for this computer. I think you should buy something like a MacBook instead." "A McBook?" Ove says, far from convinced. "Is that one of those blessed 'eReaders' everyone's talking about?" "No. A MacBook is a . . . it's a . . . laptop, with a keyboard." "Okay!" Ove hisses. He looks around the shop for a moment. "So are they any good, then?" The sales assistant looks down at the counter in a way that seems to reveal a fiercely yet barely controlled desire to begin clawing his own face. Then he suddenly brightens, flashing an energetic smile. "You know what? Let me see if my colleague has finished with his customer, so he can come and give you a demonstration." Ove checks his watch and grudgingly agrees, reminding the assistant that some people have better things to do than stand around all day waiting. The assistant gives him a quick nod, then disappears and comes back after a few moments with a colleague. The colleague looks very happy, as people do when they have not been working for a sufficient stretch of time as sales assistants. "Hi, how can I help you?" Ove drills his police-flashlight finger into the counter. "I want a computer!" The colleague no longer looks quite as happy. He gives the first sales assistant an insinuating glance as if to say he'll pay him back for this. In the meantime the first sales assistant mutters, "I can't take anymore, I'm going for lunch." "Lunch," snorts Ove. "That's the only thing people care about nowadays." "I'm sorry?" says the colleague and turns around. "Lunch!" He sneers, then tosses the box onto the counter and swiftly walks out. Excerpted from A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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