Ferdinand Brun hasn't always been a grumpy old man. Many years ago, he was a grumpy young man. Now he'd much rather spend time with his canine companion, Daisy, than any of his nosy neighbors. But as his behavior becomes increasingly peculiar, his daughter grows concerned and begins to consider moving him into a retirement home.
In order to maintain his freedom, Ferdinand must submit to an apartment inspection by his longtime enemy, the iron-fisted concierge, Mrs. Suarez. Unfortunately, he's never tidied up a day in his life. His neighbors, precocious ten-year-old Juliette and vivacious ninety-two-year-old Beatrice, come to the rescue. And once he lets these two into his life, things will never be the same. After an eighty-three-year reign of grouchiness, Ferdinand may finally learn that it's never too late to start living.
©2014 Aurélie Valognes (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved. Translation © 2015 Wendeline A. Hardenberg.
Writing is not my forte, but I can listen with the best of them!
This was a nice story that featured an old cranky man that hated the world and everything in it except his beloved dog. After tragic events, he no longer had any reason to live (even though he has a daughter and grandson). The story moved through many mini stories that eventually made the old man reevaluate his life's choices. It's a story of personal growth, perseverance and gratitude despite his stubbornness,
As I stated in my title, this was a cute book and I would recommend it. There isn't anything about it that makes it a page turner that you "just can't put down", but a sweetness about it that makes you think about your life and what you may be grateful for.
Ferdinand is an octogenarian curmudgeon resigned to a dreary obstinate life alone in an apartment complex full of people who don't understand him. But things start to happen that bring him a new perspective on life. The story is charming, intelligent, funny and loving. I adored it, didn't want to stop listening to it. The reader has a straightforward delivery that makes perfect and gently perceptive sense. And the story has some surprising twists. Very much a satisfying read.
Ferdinand has always been a grumpy guy, but now he's getting older. He doesn't have as much control over his life. He has to show he's capable of living on his own so that his estranged daughter will continue to let him do so. He tries to do better and has to face some parts about himself. He learns and grows. He develops relationships. There's some light comedy and some heart. It's a fairly short read and ends well.
The story was cute and fairly predictable, but enjoyable nonetheless. The narrator was slightly distracting to me. He sounded like Seth McFarlane from Family Guy. Some of the voices sounded just like a few of the characters on Family Guy. I heard some definite Carter Pewterschmidt in the main character and Stewie Griffin in the British neighbor :)
I was really hoping I'd like this book as much as I liked A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman because I could totally get behind that kind of a grumpy, old, stubborn man who doesn't think he has anything else to live for.
"His hostility has become second nature, a way of life, of survival, even. Yes, survival, because Ferdinand resents growing old. Solitude, the decay of the body, all that is slowly killing him. The only activity Ferdinand has found to stave off boredom is being nasty so no one misses him when he goes."
But, this wasn't nearly on that level at all. I couldn't connect with the main character on ANYTHING in the first half of the book. The story dragged and I thought about not finishing it at all (I do not DNF books, ever). But once the secondary characters came into the story more, then I actually started to enjoy it. In all reality, I'd give the first half of the book a star or two and the second half gets all five, so I decided to round it out.
The narrator was okay. There were a few instances where I wasn't able to decipher what voice he was narrating at the time.
I initially bought this book because it reminded me of someone who is very close to me, but as I got into the story, I found it contained so much more than I imagined.
My only dislike was the end of the book which I felt seemed a bit rushed.
A 10 year old child does not speak like Juliet does. Even a precocious one. Other than that the story was ok but the narrator is the one who really sells it.
I enjoyed this story about grumpiness and loneliness and the need for companionship. There are many people out there whose lives will reflect this story. It was also well narrated.
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