A man called Ove – a curmudgeon worth a deeper look

The title of bestselling author Fredrik Backman’s book “A man called Ove” or the reference to the subject may not be inviting, but give this book a chance. We all have curmudgeons in our lives and sometimes we may even channel our inner curmudgeon. But, why do some people act the way they do?

People Magazine opines on Ove, “You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll feel new sympathy for the curmudgeons in your life.” I agree.

Backman introduces Ove in real time, so you will start off with a full-frontal view of a curmudgeon. But, through changes in his daily life and a series of reveals as Ove remembers the good and bad in his life, you gain a new perspective on how he has evolved to be who he is. You will learn Ove has a tough outer shell, but different layers are buried beneath.

To avoid any spoilers, let me mention what is written on the back cover to invite you to read the book. Ove’s daily routine is disrupted when chatty new neighbors with two young daughters announce they have arrived one November morning by accidentally backing their U-Haul trailer over Ove’s mailbox.

Their interactions and related others take an ice-pick to Ove’s icy outer shell. The book is an easy read, but do give Ove a chance. Your initial reaction to Ove will be like everyone else’s whom the character meets in the book. So, bring your proverbial ice pick along. And, some tissue.

9 thoughts on “A man called Ove – a curmudgeon worth a deeper look

    • Janis, many thanks. I must confess I was unaware of the movie. I am pushing my wife to read it as well, so we can talk about it. I am glad to hear the author has turned out other good books, one obviously because of its bestseller status. Keith

  1. Note to Readers: I mentioned to VJ that my step-grandfather had a little curmudgeon, but that is not totally fair. He was more quiet than curmudgeon. I did take the opportunity to check an old curmudgeon I used to work with many moons ago. I sadly learned he had passed away in 2016. I wish I had known, as I might have gone to the funeral.

    Like eccentrics, curmudgeons are just different kinds of people. I cherish the eccentric, but like peeling layers of onion from the curmudgeon.

    This is likely why I picked up this book in a locally-owned mountain town bookstore. The owner said they had just read this in their book club and adored it.

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