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An hour before his 100th birthday party, Allan Karlsson climbs out the window of his bedroom in the Old Folks Home and heads toward the bus station.  His escape might have been perfectly ordinary if he hadn’t run into the young gang member with the large and intriguing suitcase.  While the young man is in the bathroom, Allan steals the suitcase and hops a bus to nowhere in particular.  And so it is that the centenarian becomes one of Sweden’s most wanted, chased across the countryside by policemen and thieves, and collecting an odd assortment of friends and circus animals along the way.  Not that this type of thing is anything out of the ordinary for Allan Karlsson.  After all, it pales in comparison with the time he helped Mao’s third wife escape from anti-communist revolutionaries or the time he helped President Truman build the atom bomb or the time. . .

The absurd story of Allan’s present weaves in and out of the absurd stories of his past in this hilarious satire novel.  The suspense of the suitcase mystery and the cast of colorful characters (past and present) make this book difficult to put down.  I highly recommend it to readers who enjoy political satire.  This novel may appeal to fans of Kurt Vonnegut and Joseph Heller.

Thanks for the recommendation, Meagan!

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