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.
Jonas Jonasson’s charming novel The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared tells the story of Allan Karlsson, who has just turned 100 and is desperate to escape his own birthday party. On the run from the old people’s home in his slippers, Allan soon is swept into an adventure involving a suitcase stuffed with money, murder victims, villains and police. As the narrative unfolds, we discover more of Allan’s Forrest Gump-like background, having worked on the Manhattan Project, befriended heads of state and had a hand in many of the momentous events of the twentieth century. This delightful audiobook is narrated by Peter Kenny and available for download from Audible.
“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.” (
"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)
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It wasn't what I had expected. Very quirky - as the title suggests - but I found myself finding it hard to stop listening to.
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.
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.
I could easily have listened in a single sitting. Sadly work gets in the way at times.
An excellent listen, completely absorbing