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The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared | [Jonas Jonasson]

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

Sitting quietly in his room in an old people's home, Allan Karlsson is waiting for a party he doesn't want to begin: his one-hundredth birthday party. Escaping through his bedroom window, into the flowerbed, Allan makes his getaway. And so begins his picaresque and unlikely journey involving criminals, several deaths, a suitcase full of cash, and incompetent but very human police.
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Publisher's Summary

Sitting quietly in his room in an old people's home, Allan Karlsson is waiting for a party he doesn't want to begin: his 100th birthday party. Escaping through his bedroom window, into the flowerbed, Allan makes his getaway. And so begins his picaresque and unlikely journey involving criminals, several deaths, a suitcase full of cash, and incompetent but very human police. As his escapades unfold, Allan's earlier life is revealed, and we discover that he played a key role behind the scenes in some of the momentous events of the 20th century.

This 'imaginative, laugh-out-loud bestseller' (Daily Telegraph) has sold more than two million printed copies.

©2009 Jonas Jonasson (P)2012 Strathmore Publishing Ltd

What the Critics Say

"Like Forrest Gump, Allan is an innocent with the knack of being in the right place at the right time. He has had a hand in everything from the Russian revolution to Reagan's Star Wars. Like Allan, the plot is pleasingly nimble and the book's endearing charm offers a happy alternative to the more familiar Nordic noir." (The Guardian)

"a mordantly funny and loopily freewheeling debut novel about ageing ¬disgracefully, [full of] infectious humour and crackpot energy. The author has ... an acute ear for dialogue and a brilliant eye for the absurd." (Sunday Times)

"Peter Kenny...reads with the straightness [the book's] dry humour requires ... I guarantee there will be a smile on your face when you hear it." (Christina Hardyment, The Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (1308 )
5 star
 (735)
4 star
 (316)
3 star
 (162)
2 star
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1 star
 (40)
Overall
4.3 (936 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.4 (931 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Tracey Ilkeston, United Kingdom 07/09/2012
    Tracey Ilkeston, United Kingdom 07/09/2012 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    32
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    "Brilliant"

    Normally preferring non-fiction, I was intrigued by the title of this book and decided to give it a go.
    It didn't disappoint, Alan's story is read perfectly by the narrator and the collection of friends he collects along the way are life affirming, charming and at times laugh out loud funny.
    I can't recommend this audio book highly enough.

    32 of 32 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Oliver London, United Kingdom 29/05/2013
    Oliver London, United Kingdom 29/05/2013 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    113
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    "Fantastically Odd"
    What did you like most about The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared?

    It wasn't what I had expected. Very quirky - as the title suggests - but I found myself finding it hard to stop listening to.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared?

    This is a tricky one, there are so many odd scenes, but the possibly one of the many meetings Allan has with US presidents of the past. Or, possibly when he meets Chairman Mao, or his introduction to Franco. No, there are too many to choose just one.


    Have you listened to any of Peter Kenny’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    No I hadn't and I was very impressed. I can think of very few books that include so many cameos from great historical of the last 100 years. Anyone who can move from Einstein to an angry female Swede in her 60's (with what sounded like a Yorkshire accent) is obviously a gifted narrator.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I could easily have listened in a single sitting. Sadly work gets in the way at times.


    26 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Butterfly Ilford, United Kingdom 17/09/2012
    Butterfly Ilford, United Kingdom 17/09/2012 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "You go on a journey that you don't want to stop"

    A brilliant book. I wouldn't want to give anything away as every page you turn will have you laughing and in a state of disbelief. So if you want to go on an adventure with a 100 year old Swedish man who has had an unusual, funny and amazing life then this is the book for you. I dare you not to love it.

    19 of 19 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mrs. United Kingdom 08/10/2012
    Mrs. United Kingdom 08/10/2012 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    4
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    "Laugh out load funny desperate to know whats next!"

    An excellent read. From the first chapter it is clear than Alan is not your average centanarian! Split second decisions lead him into intriguing situations, meeting such a variety of people and getting into hilarious and dangerous scrapes with them. Alan, it seems, is able to relate to anyone, and through 'flashbacks' the reader is introduced to Alan's life before the current adventure. There is a 'Forrest Gump' feel to his past as he encouters world leaders and shapes the history of the world -all in a very 'accidental' and humble way. A tale of a very unusual life - but you have to love Alan! The tale is well crafted keeping the readers interest and leaving you keen for the next installment whenever you stop.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane 16/12/2012
    Jane 16/12/2012 Member Since 2012

    I tend to listen to my audiobooks in the car and like to be entertained. Anything with a good storyline. Fiction is my preferred bag

    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
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    "An excellent listen, completely absorbing"

    A wonderful tale, this is what I want from an Audiobook - great story and great narration. If only all audiobooks could be this entertaining.

    This book has transferred well to audio, it comes alive - you are drawn into the characters and situation quickly and effortlessly, just as it should be for me. Not only did it make me laugh but I actually cared about the primary character.



    Not one to normally write reviews as not much seems to be that worthy, but this is a thoroughly enjoyable listen and one which I wholeheartedly recommend.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mrs Bromley, United Kingdom 25/02/2013
    Mrs Bromley, United Kingdom 25/02/2013 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
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    "One to make you smile"

    We listened to this book on a long car journey in February en-route to a family pow wow on care for an elderly relative, so when it began with a man in a care home, our hearts sank. But, within just a few minutes, we were smiling and even laughing out loud at the exploits of Allan and his expanding group of friends. Yes, the story was implausable in places, but it was told with such gentle humour that if you are prepared to suspend reality and 'go with the flow', I'm sure you wiill enjoy it. Any book that can make you smile in the circumstances that we heard it has to have five stars in my mind.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    i carver uk 23/12/2012
    i carver uk 23/12/2012 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
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    "A favourite for everyone and anyone"

    I really enjoyed this book, the characters and story are great and the narrator delivers it perfectly.



    It is hard to talk about as you don't want to take anything away from the listeners shared adventure, at the same time talking to people who have read it is brilliant as you'll both end up laughing and endlessly recalling comic references. So it could be seen as quite a selfish act but I've recommended the audiobook to several of my friends and family and bought the book as two Christmas presents this year :)



    If you stumble across this please give it a go as you won't be disappointed.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mr j 22/11/2012
    mr j 22/11/2012 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A great listen"

    Don't hesitate, just buy and listen. This book has kept me smiling and chortling for weeks. Stands up to re-listening.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mrs Corby, United Kingdom 16/12/2012
    Mrs Corby, United Kingdom 16/12/2012 Member Since 2011
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    "One of the best books"

    This book is fabulous and from the first page I was captured. The stories within the main story are so clever and entwine together to make a brilliant book. The narration is also excellent and I am sure I will listen to it again and again.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Red Fred England 29/11/2012
    Red Fred England 29/11/2012 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    "Very pleasantly surprised"

    I enjoyed this book more than I thought I would; I'm so glad I took the chance with it. I loved hearing about Allan's life and his inadvertent influence and involvement in historical events. I found myself smiling throughout and it is laugh out loud in places. I especially loved the chapter when they were recounting their story to the Prosecutor. This was very well-read.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 189 results PREVIOUS1219NEXT
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  • Sean
    Gorey, Ireland
    20/04/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A hilarious trip through time"
    If you could sum up The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared in three words, what would they be?

    Original black humour


    What other book might you compare The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared to and why?

    The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. Similar characters and similar black humour. An aging pensioner goes through a series of unexpected adventures while looking back over the past events of his life.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Alan and his relationship with Stalin and other (in)famous world leaders was quite entertaining!


    Who was the most memorable character of The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared and why?

    Alan for his sheer deadpan humour and eternally optimistic and simple outlook on life.


    Any additional comments?

    An excellent listen that I would thoroughly recommend to anyone who enjoys a laugh and a small bit of world history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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