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 health, and in one day, he turns 100. A big celebration is in the works, but Allan really isn't interested (and he'd like a bit more control over his vodka consumption). So he decides to escape. He climbs out the window in his slippers and embarks on a hilarious and entirely unexpected journey, involving, among other surprises, a suitcase stuffed with cash, some unpleasant criminals, a friendly hot-dog stand operator, and an elephant (not to mention a death by elephant).
Quirky and utterly unique, The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared has charmed over 2 million people around the world.
©2009 Jonas Jonasson (P)2012 AudioGO
This delightful book retraces past events and adventures and subsequent happenings of Alan Carlson after he escaped his 100th birthday celebration. Alan's past events are filled with historical characters and related events over that century. His current happening's chapters are followed by retellings of his past which intertwine throughout. The satire had me chuckling and at times laughing out loud. Very entertaining.
What a delightful story! This was an intricate story that was mostly focused in the present but included the 100 years worth of adventures of the 100-year-old man. His adventures were of the Forrest Gump sort, but remained entertaining. And of course, all of the intricate threads come together nicely! The aged protagonist is likeable, optimistic , and easy going. Now, this story wouldn't have worked for me as a book to read because I tend to skim over detail. As an audible book, I had no choice but to listen to every painstaking moment and that's what made this story so good!
This book is best for those who enjoy a meandering tale. The book has two main time lines interwoven...the current 100 year old man, and his life starting from childhood in Sweden. There is humor built in for history buffs. (Turns out this old guy got around over the years to have dinner with and help out President Truman, Stalin, and a host of other historical figures.) I'm more a sci-fi person and picked this book up for a change of pace. By the midpoint of the book, I was ready for it to end. It felt repetitive. The last third of the book picked up again and I enjoyed the last quarter. The humor in the book is pretty good and I laughed out loud in a few places.
It's a bit of fun but for me it didn't have enough substance to enjoy it all the way to the end. Did finish it of course but was mentally done with it the last few chapters.
Whenever I see an old person I think to myself that everyone has a story... If we just took the time to listen. This book proved it! The adventure that Alan goes on as he turns 100 years old, runs parallel to the adventure he's been on for the last hundred years. This book made me laugh and I will never forget it. I love the narration. I didn't want it to end.
I enjoyed the story and liked the way we got Alan's history along with the current 100 year old adventure.
This was recommended to me as a very funny book, but I didn't find much humour in it.....still it is fun and kind of quirky. As mentioned by several reviews, there is a strong similarity to Forrest Gump in that Allan (the 100 year old man) relates the story of his life full of incredible people, coincidences, and happenings: He met many famous critical people in the world (Harry S. Truman, Kim Jong-il, WInston Churchill), he helped create the first atom bomb while serving coffee to Opperman at Los Alamos, spent 5 years in a Russian gulag before escaping to North Korea, and befriends the unknown illegitimate son of Albert Einstein and an elephant. Most of the book is the telling of the story of his previous years, though what happens after he climbs out out the window and disappears is still a part of the central story (and how he meets the elephant).
The truth is, though, that there are so many circumstances of luck and coincidence that they lose their power to charm and amuse......it becomes too predictable in its unpredictability. Like a good joke that goes too far and becomes boring, this is a little too much on the same theme. The good narration, though, helps to make it enjoyable nonetheless.
This was one of those books that I hated to see end. It is full of a delightful and ridiculous series of events and people and outcomes placed lightheartedly together. It reminded me of the Forrest Gump story where everything just works out despite all odds.
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