🎧 Audiobook Review: A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

Posted September 24, 2022 by WendyW in Book Review, bookblogger / 34 Comments

A Man Called Ove
One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

by Fredrik Backman
Publication Date May 5, 2015
Published by Simon and Schuster
Narrator: J. K. Simmons
Length: 9 hrs and 13 mins
Purchase Here Buy on Amazon US - Buy on Apple - Buy on Kobo - Buy on Google - Buy at Barnes and Noble - Buy on Waterstones - Buy on Audible - Buy on Amazon UK
Genres: Fiction / Friendship, Fiction / Humorous / General, Fiction / Literary, Fiction / Media Tie-In
Pages: 337
Format: Audiobook
Reading Challenges: 2022 Audiobook Challenge

In this New York Times bestselling “charming debut” (People)—soon to be a major motion picture starring Tom Hanks—from one of Sweden’s most successful authors, 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 exploration of the profound impact one life has on countless others. “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” (Booklist, starred review).

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman is a look at one man’s transformation from a grumpy old man, to a slightly less grumpy old man.  It’s the transformation that makes this such an outstanding book, and one that I will be thinking about for a very long time.  

After the death of his wife, Ove only wants solitude, or so that’s what his neighbors think.  But, when a lively new young family moves into the neighborhood, Ove’s life is turned upside down.  His neat orderly life is now disorderly and chaotic and he’s not sure what to think of this.  

I don’t know what to say that hasn’t already been said about this amazing book.  Ove is such a simple character on the surface, but as we learn more about him throughout the book, we realize he’s a very complex man.  

This book is funny, sad, uplifting, heartwarming, and thought-provoking.  You might dislike Ove in the beginning, but you’ll love him by the end of the book.  

J.K. Simmons narrated the audiobook, and he’s amazing.  Now, when I hear the Farmers Insurance commercials, I’ll be thinking it’s Ove doing the commercials.  J.K. Simmons does the grumpy old man voice so well it’s no wonder he’s an academy award winner.  

About Fredrik Backman

Fredrik Backman is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove, My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry, Britt-Marie Was Here, Beartown, Us Against You, and Anxious People, as well as two novellas and one work of nonfiction. His books are published in more than forty countries. He lives in Stockholm, Sweden, with his wife and two children.

Book Challenges:

A Man Called Ove counts towards my 20 Books Of Summer challenge (I listened to it back in August) and my 2022 Audiobook Challenge.

Have you read A Man Called Ove? Does it interest you?

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

34 responses to “🎧 Audiobook Review: A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

  1. Jenny+McClinton

    This sounds lovely, I like books where you come to love the character from not liking them in the beginning, great review 😊

  2. Fantastic review!! I’ve heard such great things about this book, but I never managed to move it to the top of my TBR pile. I’ll be on the lookout for a good audiobook deal.

  3. I recently added this on TBR as I never read any book by the author before and every reader has loved this one. I can’t wait to see how i find this. Amazing review!

  4. It’s really weird. I was never interested in reading Frederik Backman’s stuff. Then, my book club read Anxious People and my whole outlook changed. I definitely want to read this one as well as more books by Backman. 😀 I’m glad you enjoyed this one as much as you did!

  5. Janette

    I’ve heard loads about this book but never got round to reading it. I definitely need to after reading your review.