"A Man Called Ove" (pronounced "oo-vah") is about a crotchety old Swedish man behind the times, yet it's set somewhere slightly in the future, as his"A Man Called Ove" (pronounced "oo-vah") is about a crotchety old Swedish man behind the times, yet it's set somewhere slightly in the future, as his teenage years happened in the 1990s. Still, he has an old-timer attitude where he believes in things that should last forever, following the rules of his neighborhood, and not making a fuss about things.
The story slowly unfolds as we see Ove going through life as a newly widowed man, his world shaken, yet he struggles in his refusal to be shaken. His backstory is beautifully woven throughout the narrative, bringing to light all the things that have made him into who he is today and quietly revealing that his heart is actually bigger than he would care to let on.
So many elegant and deeply moving sentences in this subtle jewel of a story. My favorite remains in my memory as this: "People said Ove saw the world in black and white. But she was color. All the color he had." You can read more favorite quotes from other readers here: GoodReads List of Quotes from "A Man Called Ove"
I thoroughly enjoyed the cleverness of the narrative as well as the spark of the characters who come into Ove's life--or rather barge their way in as inconveniently as possible, as Ove would put it. Even the cat who inexplicably worms his way into Ove's care has a distinct and present personality. "A Man Called Ove" is not a fast-paced action story but rather an elegantly subtle character study, a poignant study on the human condition, and an enlightening revelation of how no one is ever truly exactly what they seem on the outside....more
Feed by Mira Grant is a dystopian political zombie thriller set against the backdrop of a national political campaign. The story is told through blogFeed by Mira Grant is a dystopian political zombie thriller set against the backdrop of a national political campaign. The story is told through blog posts and journal entries written by “newsie” Georgia Mason and her brother, an adventure-seeking “Irwin” reporter, Shaun Mason.
I love a good zombie story. I’m not exactly sure why, but there it is. I also really love to see different twists on telling zombie stories. Feed takes place 26 years following the initial outbreak of the zombie virus, which is referred to as “The Rising.” The virus came about from two medical miracles: the cure for the common cold and the cure for cancer. Unfortunately, they found that when these two antidotes came together, they formed a new virus called Kellis-Amberlee. Kellis-Amberlee is normally beneficial, for cancer and the common cold are a thing of the past for all humankind, but physical death causes the virus to “go live” or “amplify”, converting any host mammal over 40 pounds into the hungry, walking dead.
What’s different about this world versus most zombie scenarios is that the people in this world actually have seen zombie movies. In fact, George Romero (real life creator of the “Night of the Living Dead” movies) is revered as one who warned the world of things to come. They are smart about taking precautions against infection by using blood testing kits, and they have found a way to survive and continue relatively normal life despite the existence of zombies wandering the land. Usually zombie stories focus on the initial outbreak—not how the world found its new “normal” decades later.
Feed also raises many interesting questions about God as Georgia Mason and other characters struggle with the existence of the evils that come from both the zombies and the hearts of the uninfected who would still choose to hurt healthy people in a world where so much is stacked against the human race....more
Not sure what compelled me to pick this up as a Rapid Read (7-day checkout) from my library. (I'm usually a super slow reader; this mainly due to theNot sure what compelled me to pick this up as a Rapid Read (7-day checkout) from my library. (I'm usually a super slow reader; this mainly due to the fact that I dwell on paragraphs, sentences, and phrases that I want to savor--probably too long.) But I saw Finders Keepers sitting there and thought, "New Stephen King? Haven't read a lot of his new stuff. Why not?" The synopsis sounded oddly like Misery, but I knew it surely couldn't be a knockoff of his own work. I didn't even realize it was part of a series until I came to Goodreads to add it to my shelf. By then, I was148 pages in and totally hooked. I didn't care that it was book 2 because I wanted to see where the rabbit hole was headed.
Finders Keepers is filled with all the things lovers of Stephen King eat up--tiny horrors the imagination would never conjure on its own, characters with depth and sharp personalities, nail biting chapter endings, and a masterful grasp of how to draw a reader's fingers to the corner of the page in delighted yet terrified anticipation of the inevitable turning. I came to care at least a little bit about every single character that emerged. Even the guy at the mechanic shop had layers to him, which is one of King's trademarks--making characters so rich and real you can almost smell them.
The storyline is most definitely NOT a throwback to Misery. Obsessive, crazy fan of a writer's main character? Yes. Beloved writer in a hostage situation? No. (That's pretty clear by the end of chapter 1.) Morris, the antagonist, is both insane and relatable. He's a fan of good stories, and aren't we all who pick up books? His fanaticism is almost understandable, though the choices he makes to express his passions are not so wise...
I haven't yet read Mr. Mercedes (book 1 of the series), but I'm certainly interested in the crossover characters I met in Finders Keepers. In true King fashion, the intertwining of these two stories is all at once perfectly genius while seemingly perfectly random, mirroring real life. As Sherlock Holmes would say, "Life is infinitely stranger than anything that the mind of man could invent."
I'm excited to read Mr. Mercedes next. Though the ending was (not surprisingly) given away in book 2, I really don't care because I'm highly intrigued by Bill Hodges, Holly, and Jerome. In Finders Keepers, I got to see their growth as characters after the events of book 1, and I'd love to see what their beginnings looked like. As for the antagonist in Mr. Mercedes, Brady, he scares me a bit, especially after the epilogue at the end of Finders Keepers. Book 3 in this series is going to be a doozy....more