The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared
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The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared

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3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  54,869 ratings  ·  8,416 reviews
It all starts on the one-hundredth birthday of Allan Karlsson. Sitting quietly in his room in an old people’s home, he is waiting for the party he-never-wanted-anyway to begin. The Mayor is going to be there. The press is going to be there. But, as it turns out, Allan is not… Slowly but surely Allan climbs out of his bedroom window, into the flowerbed (in his slippers) and...more
Paperback, 396 pages
Published July 12th 2012 by Hesperus Press (first published April 14th 2009)
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Richard Reviles Censorship Always in All Ways
Pearl Ruled (p100)--coincidentally, the end of chapter 8!
***see update below***
Rating: 1.5* of five

The Book Description: The international publishing sensation--over two million copies sold A reluctant centenarian much like Forrest Gump (if Gump were an explosives expert with a fondness for vodka) decides it's not too late to start over...

After a long and eventful life, Allan Karlsson ends up in a nursing home, believing it to be his last stop. The only problem is that he's still in good healt...more
Robin Webster
I don’t think I’ve ever read a book where the title so sums up what the book is all about. The story is set in Sweden and is about the life and adventures of our hero Allan Karlsson who on his hundredth birthday climbed out the window of his old people’s home and disappeared. He then sets out on a journey where he steals a suitcase which turns out to contain a fortune that was paid over to a group of bikers by a Russian organized crime syndicate as payment for a drug deal. There then follows an...more
Jennie
And the title was so promising...

Dumb. Oh so dumb. The humor, if it could be called that, is roughly on par with children's knock knock jokes. And this feeble comedy is hammered on with an incredible relentlessness over 400 pages.

Ha ha...people drink vodka! Ha ha! A man who doesn't like politics meets every important political leader over 5 decades...ha ha! Religion and politics are dumb. Guffaw guffaw.

I actively groaned more times than be counted. I suppose this title will be the darling of b...more
Angela Oliver
First it was funny, then it was tedious, then it was just annoying. The name dropping, the fact that one person could have such an influence on world politics. Very farcical. I think what bugged me the most was when they convinced the police officer to join them. Everything was just too smooth, too convenient. I struggled to finish it and I cannot understand what all the hype is about. The writing style seemed off to - aside from the lack of speech marks, there was a lot of repetition and unnece...more
Libbeth
If I could have read this book at school instead of dull text books 'O'level history would have been brought to life. I enjoyed the way historical figures and events were tied in with Allan's remarkable life story, I enjoyed the characters, the daftness of it all and of course what's not to love about an elephant.

Becky
My first thought upon finishing this book (and the thought will sound negative but it's really not) is that it was much longer than I thought it would be. And I say that, not negatively, because truly, how much can you expect from an 100-year-old man who climbs out of a window?

Well, Allan Karlsson is not your typical 100-year-old man, and this book will prove it to you. I read some of the reviews before I started it, and many people compared the book to the movie Forrest Gump. After finishing th...more
Simonne
Totally bizar book :) A Forust gump kind of feeling. I've never read any kind of book like this one.
The author made me wonder many times what to expect next and often I had a smile on my face.

A bizar great fun kind of book.
Hal
This novel is absolutely insane! It destroys any image you may have of the stoic, humorless Swede. You may want to avoid reading this book in public. Your guffaws, snickers and smiles are apt to draw weird looks from folks around you.

"The 100-Year-Old Man..." was a hit when first published in Swedish and continued as a comedic smash when translated into English.

It is certainly a rewriting of history. You meet a Franco, a Truman, a Mao, a Nixon and others along the way who are nothing like the hi...more
Catriona
A charming, sweet and often hilarious black comedy.
Enter the world of Allan Karlsson - the 100 year old explosives expert who, during his rather extraordinary century, has met some of the most influential of world leaders, stolen from a ferocious gang member whilst he was in the toilet, developed an affinity with Sonja (who doesn't often take to people - she's quite a discerning elephant) and is a very loyal and protective cat owner.
Not one for sitting quietly when it's time to do something, Al...more
David Sven
This book is in need of a better, more descriptive title than The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared. Seriously, it's about as imaginative as "Jonas Jonasson."

Here is a list of some alternative titles for your consideration Jonas son of himself - how about

The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Went on a Killing Spree

or

The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Likes to Blow Stuff Up

or

The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of...more
Victoria

Let’s be honest, it’s a ridiculous title. I like ridiculous titles though, they breed curiosity at the very least (even if they do get shortened in discussion for ease and amusement – my favourite shortened title thus far is “Heartbreaking sh*tty sh*itness” – 5 points to the person who works out the full title first). So when Betty picked this for book club this month, I was at least drawn in by the title (and of course by the author’s fantastic name). And the ridiculousness of the title most d...more
Margitte
This is the most hilarious, off-the-charts, tragicomedy-idea I have read in a long time. Probably the most outrageous bucket list in motion ever constructed as a plot. I felt a little bit psycho for sniggering where I should not. And laughing out loud made me question my own levels of emotional intelligence! But really, the book is written so bizarrely funny, I just could not help myself. Did I stop reading when I thought to rather see a shrink than continue? Of course not! The action-packed mur...more
·Karen·
In which we learn that only a Finn or a Russian can compete in the hard drinking stakes with a Swede.

Allan Karlsson is not looking forward to the impending celebration of his 100th birthday in the company of his fellow inmates of the care facility in which Sister Alice rules with an iron hand in an iron glove. Nor does he relish speechifying by the local mayor and the interest of reporters. In fact the whole shebang is likely to take place with nothing more refreshing to the spirit than tea, so...more
Noeleen
I didn't know what to expect when I started reading Jonas Jonasson’s The Hundred-Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared. I did know that I was in the mood for a right aul giggle and this little gem of a story most certainly didn't disappoint.

Taking us on a journey through the main historical events of the 20th century, Allan Karlsson has certainly lived an eventful, out of the ordinary, crazy life, meeting the top players in the political arena as he does so. Not only that,...more
Lance Greenfield
As you would expect, there would have been plenty of events and adventures in the life of any centenarian. But Allan Karlsson is exceptional by any standards. You would not believe what he has been trough in his one hundred years on the planet. He has come close to meeting an early, and violent, end on many occasions, and this continues during his latest adventure which commences on his one-hundredth birthday when he climbs out of his bedroom window at the old folks' home to escape from his unwa...more
Ana
My first impulse was to give this a one-star rating, and after about two seconds of thinking, I did exactly that. However, after a more careful revision and after re-reading a couple of passages from it, I decided this should get a solid two-star rating. The reason is simple: a one star rating, in my opinion, is for a book I deem incomparably stupid and written by an imbecile who can't put a couple of words together to form a decent story. I have given one star ratings before, and after looking...more
Alcornell
laugh out loud-funny, and deeply sad and human in places; great relief from the Svensk-noir trend currently on the best seller lists. and if aging has you down this is a real tonic. Everyone has hit on the Forest Gump reference, but Gump meets who? the narrator in Water For Elephants and all the townspeople in Waking Ned Devine and Ballykissangel? Karlsson is an intrepid voyager thru life, with a gift for not reflecting too much. Add to that his love for vodka, his gift of gab, and know-how with...more
Carmen
Jun 09, 2014 Carmen rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Recommended to Carmen by: Library
Shelves: fiction
Hilarious book about a 100-year-old man who crawls out of the Nursing Home window and goes on many adventures involving, but not limited to: murder, elephants, and robbery.

The chapters about what's going on with Allan (the old man) now, at age 100, are interspersed with chapters about his many adventures in the past as an explosives expert. In his extensive worldwide travels he meets and befriends Franco, Stalin, Mao Tse-Tung, Presidents Truman and Johnson, Churchill, etc. etc.

I love the bare-b...more
Marleen
One hour before the celebrations for his 100th birthday are to start Allan Karlsson decides that he has had enough of life in the retirement home where he lives, especially of the bossy nurse named Alice, climbs out of his window and walks of.
Allan doesn’t have a clear plan as to where he wants to go, he just wants to get away. On his slippers he slowly makes his way to the bus station. While he’s waiting for the first bus that can take him further away a young man asks him to mind a big suitcas...more
Kats
Had I never heard of this book and come across it by accident, I might have experienced it the way other readers seem to have; as a quirky adventure tale full of dark humour and entertaining historical anecdotes. Sadly, a hyped up "number 1 international bestseller" reference awakes the critical, sceptical if not cynical reader in me. It took me quite a long time to get into this book (granted, there was too much going on in the run-up to Xmas anyway), and then stick with it, and had one of my b...more
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

This quirky, funny and clever novel follows the present and past adventures of the endearing Swedish centenarian, Allan Karlsson. Less than an hour before his 100th birthday celebration, Allan climbs out of the ground floor window of his nursing home with no real plan other than to avoid all the fuss. Contemplating his next move at the local bus station, he is asked to mind a young man's suitcase and hoping it's contents may be useful, absconds with it on the next bus out of town. What follows i...more
Elsje
Ben benieuwd of de Boeddha-beelden nog langskomen op z'n oude dag...Als je op zoek bent naar een leuk boek voor tussendoor, raad ik je van harte Jonas Jonassons 100 jarige man aan. Ik kreeg het voor m'n verjaardag van mijn IRL-leesgroep: dank, meiden!

Het verhaal
Allan Karlsson wordt in mei 2005 100 jaar. Een kwartier voordat hij opgehaald zal worden door de leiding van het bejaardenhuis waar hij woont, besluit hij niet mee te doen aan de feestelijkheden: hij stapt uit het raam en loopt (schuifelt...more
Lammoth
Изминалият 20-и век бе един много щур и изпълнен със събития период. Век, в който властваха десетки крайни идеологии като фашизъм, комунизъм, религиозен фанатизъм, съпътствани от икономическия империализъм и медийната пропаганда. Век, в който човечеството преживя две световни войни, множество кървави революции и строежи/падания на стени. Столетие, в което хората стигнаха луната, измислиха атомната бомба и дадоха старт на компютърната ера....Въобще, щури времена.

"Стогодишният старец..." представ...more
Lee
Dec 09, 2013 Lee rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: fiction
LOL I didn't have a shelf to put this on, so it got stuck with fiction. 'Crazy Swedish what were you smoking ' shelf may have worked. 'books inspired by forrest gump' may have worked.

As part of a group read we try to challenge each other with reading something completely different that you would never usually pick up at your local library. I can honestly say a story about a 100 year old man climbing out of an old folks home in Sweden and wandering around the countryside was not something I woul...more
Hanne
Dec 11, 2013 Hanne rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hanne by: Kat
Bonkers, complete mad, cuckoo, crazy, mental, wacky, moonstruck… As the protagonist in this book remarks himself: there’s only a subtle difference between madness and genius.
“Allan admitted that the difference between madness and genius was subtle, and that he couldn’t with certainty say which it was in this case, but that he had his suspicious.”

For me, this book flirted with that line quite frequently. There are parts that are magnificently done, so utterly crazy, completely unbelievable and y...more
Heidi
The Hundred Year Old Man is a quirky, funny and unusual novel which not only provided some light entertainment, but also brought back memories of history lessons at school all those years ago – maybe I should have paid more attention then! Had our teacher presented the dry facts of major political events in the same fashion Jonas Jonasson manages to do by re-writing the history books with the help of his very unusual hero Allan, we would certainly have shown more interest.

There were many moment...more
Vera
This book does pretty much exactly as the title says. There are two storylines in this book: one after the Hundred-Year-Old Man (Allan) climbs out of that window and disappears, and another before Allan actually turns hundred. You see, the man is a hundred years old, there's a lot to talk about.

The humor in this book is absolutely magnificent. Allan really, really doesn't want to talk about religion or politics, but because the man somehow keeps putting himself in the close vicinity of world lea...more
B J Burton
After all the acclaim it has received I was looking forward to reading this book. The central character has gone through his life with three objectives: to drink vodka, and never to get involved in politics or religion. The book follows two threads: his adventures after climbing out of a window to avoid his 100th birthday party in the old people’s home where he lives, and flashbacks to incidents in his long life - incidents where he is ludicrously implanted into many of the major events of 20th...more
Jenny (Reading Envy)
My book club really loved this book. Every single person. They thought it was funny and clever and I couldn't force myself through it.

Ah well. To each her own. This is like The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry plus Forrest Gump's naive worldview (plus his tendency to show up anywhere) from the Swedish perspective.
Kathryn
I finished this yesterday and my thoughts were a bit muddled after finishing it.

On the one hand it is a ludicrous but amusing story about an old (very old!) man called Allan who goes missing and creates havoc in his wake (havoc to which he is oblivious!), with bumbling police and detectives always one step behind. On the other hand, it is a re-telling of this man's earlier life, and the political scrapes he gets into (despite being very uninterested in politics himself), and the people he meets...more
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3222554
After a long career as a journalist, media consultant and television producer, Jonas Jonasson decided to start a new life. He wrote a manuscript, he sold all his possessions in Sweden and moved to a small town by Lake Lugano in Switzerland, only a few meters from the Italian border.

The manuscript became a novel. The novel became a phenomenon in Sweden, and now it is about to reach the rest of the...more
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“Things are what they are, and whatever will be, will be.” 141 likes
“People could behave how they liked, but Allan considered that in general it was quite unnecessary to be grumpy if you had the chance not to.” 52 likes
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