Cover Image: And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer

And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer

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Member Reviews

Thank you so much for approving me for this title. I adore Backman's books.  My dad died right as I tried to read this and it just wasn't going to happen for me. I will look forward to trying to read it again when I'm not so emotionally complicated.
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Fredrik Backman is simply fantastic. I have not yet read a word by him that I did not love, and this was no exception.
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With all the same charm of his bestselling full-length novels, here Fredrik Backman once again reveals his unrivaled understanding of human nature and deep compassion for people in difficult circumstances. This is a tiny gem with a message you’ll treasure for a lifetime.
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I have loved every book I've read by Fredrik Backman.  This  one was especially sweet.  Keep writing them  like this Mr. Backman.  With wonderful,  warm, realistic characters.
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As with all of Backman's books he has captured my heart again with another story that hits home. Reminds me of my own grandmother's struggle with her memory and aging. 
I loved this book and as always, anticipate Backman's next novel.
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​(I received an ARC from the NETGALLEY​)​
(Review Not on Blog)

A sweet sad and unfortunately, a story I can relate to.  My grandmother died 5 years ago, but she was gone 3-4 years before that.  Reading this story now, I am able to appreciate the time I spent with her before and after dementia.
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I'm not crying. You are! This is my first time reading anything by Backman and it will not be my last. If you have ever experienced watching someone you love slip away, then you can't help but feel all of the feelings as you read this novella. I highly, highly recommend it.
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"This is a story about memories and about letting go. It's a love letter and a slow farewell between a man and his grandson, and between a dad and his boy."

I have enjoyed Fredrik Backman's books and this one may top them all. It is a simple book to read but is about a topic that is complex and heartbreaking. It is simply a novella about 3 generations and the struggle with life, love and losing those closest to us. The way the short story is told will captivate your heart and engage you throughout the short story. His writing has a way of pulling on your heart strings and causing some emotional breakdowns while reading but at the same time he can make you laugh and smile to get you through these tough issues. While this is a short story, it is full of so many different emotions and so much love that it is outstanding. One of my favorite quotes from the book is, "My memories are running away from me, my love, like when you try to separate oil and water. I'm constantly reading a book with a missing page, and it's always the most important one."

There is not a lot to say about his short story other than to simply read it. I will leave you with one last quote. "I know that the way home is getting longer and longer every morning. But I loved you because your brain, your world, was always bigger than everyone else's. There's still a lot of it left."

I did receive this book for an honest review.
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Thank you to Net Galley and Atria Books for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Fredrik Backman has a way of writing books about unique and ordinary people who despite their flaws and quirks are extremely lovable and relatable. This book tells the story of an elderly man who is losing his memories and is afraid of forgetting all the good (his grandson) and bad (the loss of his beloved wife and his regret over not spending enough time with his son) in his life. As each member of the family comes to terms with saying goodbye, we see that nothing should be left unsaid. The themes of this book, love, loss, family and remembrance will resonate with anyone who reads this book.
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Man, Fredrik Backman truly knows how to get your emotions all jumbled. I was a huge fan of A Man Called Ove, so I've been eager to read anything and everything else by Backman. And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer is just as enchanting. 

As someone who has had not one, but two grandparents suffer from Alzheimer's Disease, this story really meant a lot to me. It tells the heart-wrenching (yet uplifting) story of a man who is slowly losing his memory, and how he is learning to say goodbye to those in his life. It's an interesting portrayal of a man fighting for his brain, and is remarkable at portraying what it's like to lose what you've known your whole life. Not only do you get the inner-workings of Grandpa's brain, but you also get to see the sweet relationship that he has with his Noahnoah (he calls him that because he likes him twice as much as everyone else). It truly explains the special relationship that many have with their grandparents - a relationship that the grandparents may never have had with their own children -their second chance. 

“That’s why we get the chance to spoil our grandchildren, because by doing that we’re apologizing to our children.” 

I never got to really have the discussions with my grandparents that Noah and his grandfather have - I was very close to them, but we never really discussed what it was going to be like when they weren't "there" anymore or what was really happening. I don't know if I've ever heard the disease described as losing your way home, but the title really truly makes sense. Reading this, I really wish that I had been able to experience the loss like Noah. I know that I had a great experience with my grandparents as they were losing themselves, but I wish that I could have known what was going on in their minds as they lost everything they knew. I am glad that, unlike many in my family, I was able to walk down the road with them as they faded.

“What can we do to help Grandpa?"
The dad's tears dry on the boy's sweatshirt.
"We can walk down the road with him. We can keep him company.” 

If you're experiencing or have already experienced the loss of someone who has "left before they even die" - read this. Though we may never know what is going on in the minds of those who lose their memories, And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer helps us understand just a little of what goes on and what those around are feeling as well.
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I almost feel bad reviewing Mr. Backman's work, because I don't think anything with ever live up to A Man Called Ove for me.  But I can say, that I enjoyed this novella for what it was, a story that was not really meant to be heard about a very personal family struggle.  I have never had anyone close to me diagnosed with the illness the main character is fighting, but it really tugged at my heart.  I felt drawn in and invested in such a short amount of time.  I ached for him and his family during moments of fog and celebrated when memories were remembered and cherished.  At this point, Fredrik Backman is an author that I will automatically read whatever he writes.  He tells a simple story, in a beautiful way, which in often rare.
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Heartbreaking and beautiful, this is an homage to slowly disintegrating memories and those we share them with.
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Ever since I read his Britt-Marie Was Here, I've been a fan of Fredrik Backman's writing. In And Every Morning the Way home Gets Longer and Longer, Backman has penned an emotional, moving story about goodbyes. 
It is primarily about the relationship between an old man suffering from Alzheimers/demetia, his son, Ted and his grandson, Noah. A lot of the story takes place in a town square in the man's head, where all his precious memories are stored, and which is getting smaller everyday. As he struggles to explain his illness to his grandson, he takes a walk through his life--his first meeting with his wife, their first house, his relationship with his son, Ted, etc. 

Backman writes emotions beautifully, and here his words make the emotions three-dimensional. The old man's grief and confusion are palpable, as is the grandson's love for his grandfather. I had a lump in my throat when I was done!

No words do justice to this powerful little book about love, life and having to let go prematurely. Just  go read!

FTC disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for this honest review.
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Beautifully written, amazingly sensitive book. For anyone who might be dealing with Alzheimers.
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It's difficult to say anything about this novella - except that I urge you to read it. It's a beautiful story about a grandfather and his grandson, Noah (or Noahnoah as his grandfather calls him because he likes his name more than anyone else's) and the changes in their relationship as the grandfather is losing his memory and Noah is trying to help him remember all of the important parts of his life. I cried throughout the book and had to read it a second time as soon as I finished it - and I cried again. It is just so beautiful and sad and hopeful and lovely. One of my favorite lines (and there were many)
"That's why we get the chance to spoil our grandchildren, because by doing that we're apologizing to our children."

Thanks to NetGalley for a copy of this book to read and review.
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This book took me months to finish. MONTHS. I started in November and didn’t finish until February. Not because it was horrible, or slow, or a difficult read… but because my heart could barely take it. Any given page in this book had my heart trembling in my throat, drowning with emotion. After any 3-5 pages I would be a sobbing mess, having to set the book down again for a couple weeks while my heart healed. Like all Backman books, this one is happy, sad, beautiful, heartbreaking. But this book is even more of an emotional ride than the others. Perhaps because the main character isn’t as overtly flawed as Backman’s others. Ove had people split down the middle, with people either hating the ornery old man or seeing beyond his outward prickliness. The Grandpa in this story admits he was not the perfect father, but his love for his wife and grandson shine through so magnificently that there is no doubt of the amazing heart within this man.

And because of all the love he contains in his heart, the rest of the story is just too heartbreaking to take. Like all Backman books, the sadness is surrounded by happiness, because Grandpa is surrounded by as much love as he contains in his heart. I mean, it is pointless trying to convey in this review how powerful this book is. Why am I even trying. This book is FIVE STARS. The book is beautiful, it is powerful, it is heartwrenching, it is a must read.

I was given a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for a fair review. My fair review includes the caveat that I’m sorry it took so long to get a review entered, but the novella is so painfully beautiful that I just couldn’t get all the way through until now.
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A sweet , wise, and moving tale of an elderly man in decline from dementia saying goodbye to his young grandson Noah and helping him come to terms with the tragic process. In return Noah finds ways to help his grandfather find simple joy in their playful togetherness and hold on to his dignity despite progressive lapses in memory. It taught me how even though one’s self can become “like a fading star,” your personality can still shine through in the trusted realm of family love

The author’s introduction notes how he wrote the novella as a personal way to work out his own challenges in “missing someone who is still here” and as a way “to explain it all to my children.”

The special friendship between the two is marvelous revealed through Backmann’s usual X-ray vision into the human heart. Noah concludes that most adults asking about his day at school mainly want to know if he behaved, but his Grandpa’s concern with the same question is whether the “school behaved.” This is the man who “taught him to fish and the never be afraid of big thoughts and to look at the night sky and understand that it’s made of numbers.” It was incredibly uplifting to see Noah become a hero and surmount fears of aging and decline that paralyze most adults.

This book was provided for review by the publisher through the Netgalley program.
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This short story is another winner from Fredrick Backman.  I cannot wait for his next novel!

Update:  "And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer" has been chosen as the Marvelous Translation for February and March 2017 by The Marvelous Site.  The following review is a reviewaka, which is based on an ancient Japanese poetry form.

And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer:  A Novella /
by Fredrik Backman (c2016) /
translated from the Swedish by Alice Menzies, c2016 //

in his twilight years /
three generations learning /
how to say goodbye //

precious memories linger /
through dreamlike bewilderment //

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I am in awe of this short but powerful story.  Words are inadequate, so I'll just throw some out there -  breathtaking, heartbreaking, uplifting, beautiful, timeless, amazing.  Just look up awesome in the thesaurus and go from there.  Fredrik Backman's ability to write his characters with intricate inner worlds is fully realized here.  He portrays the losing of memories and battle to hold onto our loved ones in a unique and touching way, giving the reader a brief glimpse into what Backman imagines is the dying mind.  For some, the mind gives out long before the body does, and while we can never truly know what it is like to lose one's memory over time, I believe that this is probably the closest portrayal we've got.  Just beautiful.
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