I think that friendships are very important in one’s life. We tend to search for people that are similar to us or have the same tastes and views as us to befriend. However, sometimes a person that is our total opposite or we don’t have anything in common comes in our life and manages to tie its destiny to ours forever. So this is the subject I will propose to you today: books about unusual friendships.
1. A Man Called Ove – Fredrik Backman
“A Man Called Ove” is an easy to read book, but with so many things to be learned.
Ove is 59 now, but all his life he had a cranky character. After the death of his only love in life, his wife, Ove decides to commit suicide. “The house was too empty without her”. But faith has other plans for him. A young family of new neighbors and a cat turn his world upside down and reveal the warmness behind “the bitter neighbor from hell”, Ove.
It’s been a while since someone reminded him of the difference between being wicked because one has to be or because one can.
In the end, the book is about friendship, unkempt cats, love, youth, and agedness.
2. Freak the Mighty – Rodman Philbrick
“Freak the Mighty” is a story about the friendship between two boys: Max and Kevin.
Max lives with his grandparents and has a father who murdered his mother and serves jail for life. He has very low self-esteem. People are afraid of him due to the fact he looks very much like his dad. Kevin is known as The Freak, suffers from Morquio syndrome, wears leg braces and is bullied by most of the bigger kids.
The boys become friends after some years. Kevin rides on Max’s shoulders regularly making them feel like only one being. Because of this deep connection, they start calling themselves “Freak the Mighty”.
I never had a brain until Freak came along and let me borrow his…
“Freak the Mighty” is a strong book about friendship. About how sometimes people that enter our lives have a much bigger impact on us than the ones we are related to.
3. The Reason You’re Alive – Matthew Quick
“The Reason You’re Alive” has as its main character the sixty-eight-year-old David Granger. He is an opinionated Vietnam war veteran who after a car accident discovers he has a brain tumor.
When he wakes up after the surgery, he repeats the name Clayton Fire Bear obsessively, but no one around him knows who this person might be. It appears that the name he keeps saying belongs to his war nemesis, a Native American, from who David stole a knife. He decides to return the object to its owner and goes to search for Fire Bear. The only thing I want to say about their reunion is that is far more surprising than our protagonist imagined.
That morning I’d been worried I might be scalped, and here I was among the warmest people I will probably ever meet, no matter how long I live.
So if you want to read a book about how a grumpy old man manages to change his way of thinking, the way he sees life and about a friendship that he couldn’t think to be possible, then “The Reason You’re Alive” is the one for you.
4. The Book Thief – Markus Zusak
“The Book Thief” is one of my favorite books that I’ve read in the last 5 years.
Liesel is nine years old and after her birth mother has been accused of being a communist, the girl was given up for adoption to another German family. Even though she doesn’t know how to read she is attracted by books and she has a desire to learn how to handle the written words. The learning process becomes easy as her step-father becomes her teacher. Every night, when Liesel had nightmares, Hans and his little girl learned new letters and combined words in her first phrases.
Max, a Jew refugee who will be hidden by Liesel’s family in the cold basement of their house, becomes the girl’s companion for reading, learning and confronting the nightmares. In the coldness of the basement, under the terror of the Nazi army possibly finding Max, the author contours an everlasting friendship story.
A snowball in the face is surely the perfect beginning to a lasting friendship.
The lecture of “The Book Thief” is full of upside downs and feelings. From love to angriness, the sadness of losing a brother and fulfillment of getting a new best friend, all combined with the war atmosphere, the book has a story hard to be forgotten.
5. Oscar and the Lady in Pink – Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt
I know it is said that some books should be read only in childhood or at the very beginning of the teenage, but “Oscar and The Lady in Pink” could be an exception.
Suffering from a very severe form of cancer, Oscar meets in the hospital a volunteer worker (The Lady in Pink). She helps him “live” his whole life, by days, even if the little boy has very few to stay alive. Day by day, he goes through adolescence, then to early adulthood, middle-age crisis and also to the old one, learning and taking the conclusion from each of it. Of course, understanding every age from the perspective of a naive but intelligent child.
If you say the word DEATH in a hospital, nobody hears it
Despite the fact that the book is a very sad lecture, it is a proof of wisdom, a real-life lesson and an infantile, but a fearless manner of confronting death along an unusual friendship.
6. The Other Hand – Chris Cleave
“The Other Hand” is a ravishing story of a friendship between an asylum seeker Nigerian girl (Little Bee) and a British magazine editor (Sarah).
After spending two years in a British immigration detention, Little Bee is illegally released and manages to find Sarah and her husband Andrew. She previously met both of them on a beach in the Niger Delta. When Andrew realizes her presence, he is haunted by guilt thinking of their pass and commits suicide. Despite the fact she was an illegal immigrant, Little Bee remains by Sarah’s side and helps her take care of her four-year-old son, Charlie.
“A scar does not form on the dying. A scar means, I survived.
Chris Cleave’s novel is a sad with great potential one. You should definitely consider it if you are in search of a story about a deep friendship.
7. The Elegance of the Hedgehog – Muriel Barbery
“The Elegance of the Hedgehog” is among other things one of the best books we’ve reviewed last year.
Renée Michel is the 50-something concierge at 7 rue de Grenelle, Paris. That kind of building with glamorous and wealthy people. Despite her occupation, Michel is a wise woman, with a strong affinity to philosophy.
Then we meet Paloma, a 12 years old smart girl. She is also a philosophy maniac, and her will is to commit suicide, as her brilliance is overwhelming her.
Kakuro Ozu is the new Japanese tenant. After moving into the building, somehow unites the destiny of the two females. As a result, he smartly detects the intelligence of these 2 and invites them to his cultured life. The friendship who will blossom offers Renée and Paloma the perfect escape from their mental prisons.
If you have but one friend, make sure you choose her well.
This lecture is an urban, adult fable about a unique friendship and has a very light-spirited perspective over the modern world.
Can you add more titles to my list?