Fredrik Backman: A Man Called Ove


Ove is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet. He thinks himself surrounded by idiots – joggers, neighbours who can’t reverse a trailer properly and shop assistants who talk in code.

But isn’t it rare, these days, to find such old-fashioned clarity of belief and deed? Such unswerving conviction about what the world should be, and a lifelong dedication to making it just so?

In the end, you will see, there is something about Ove that is quite irresistible . . .


I’ve been meaning to read A Man Called Ove for some time, but it’s the prospect of seeing the film this week that’s finally spurred me into action. I’m so pleased I’ve had a chance to see what everyone is talking about! It’s a wonderfully written novel which made me feel really emotional – and not just at the end. 

A Man Called Ove is very much a character driven novel and the protagonist is obviously Ove. At first, Ove doesn’t seem that easy to like; he’s grumpy, doesn’t like people and doesn’t like his routine to be disturbed. However, this means he’s a lot like me, so I warmed to him almost instantly! I really sympathised with him in his quest for some peace and quiet and his battles with the men in white shirts. (If you know me in real life, you’ll know I’ve had many battles with men in white shirts). Having said that, it was lovely to see his character develop over the course of the story. 

There are moments of humour in A Man Called Ove, but in the novel, Backman does explore some more serious issues. There are themes such as grief, disability, illness, suicide and loneliness which aren’t easy to read about but I love how they are handled in a way which brings each character to life on the page and helps us to connect with them. The author gives the reader a lot of food for thought as we become involved in Ove’s life. 

I will definitely read more by this author in future. 

A Man Called Ove is available from Amazon.

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