Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Britt-Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman

How I Heard About It:  Two of my favorite adult novels are A Man Called Ove and My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry.  These were two incredible stories and the types of books you just can't put down.  When I saw the Fredrik Backman had a new novel out, I was so excited that I bought it on the spot and began to read right away.  

What It Is About:  Britt-Marie was actually a character in the novel My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry.  She was a minor character, but definitely a part of that story.  This time around she takes the lead in her continuing story.  Britt-Marie is fed is up with her husband Kent and his antics.  She finally leaves after she learns of an affair.  This isn't easy for her because she prides herself on living the most orderly life possible.  Britt-Marie always does the right thing, has everything organized in its place, and gives the appearance of perfection.  After meeting with a job placement agency, she finds herself in the very small town of Borg.  There isn't much here, and the surroundings are not the typical setting for Britt-Marie.  She is to run the recreation center until it is demolished.  During her stay, she meets quite a cast of characters that come and go from the center.  The young soccer team also needs a leader and they put Britt-Marie into this role.  Everything that is happening to this woman trying to escape her former life, is contrary to how she lived her life, but actually may bring her the happiness and satisfaction she has always been going for.  

What I Thought Of It:  As I mentioned above, I was so excited to read this novel and thought it was such a cool thing that the author was bringing a minor character up to the forefront.  The beginning of the story started out promising, but then fizzled out a bit for me.  The entire plot just didn't grab me like his first two novels.  I wasn't drawn to it and didn't have a problem putting it down.  That is probably why it took me so long to finish.  The first two books were stories that I just couldn't stop reading about, but that was not the case here.  There wasn't much that happened once Britt-Marie got her job and started interacting with the residents of Brog.  Sometimes that is the problem when you read really great books from an author, you measure those books to everything else they write and it doesn't always measure up.  

Who Should Read It:  I know there are many fans of the novel A Man Called Ove and his second novel My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry.  I would think these readers would definitely want to give this third novel a try.  When I checked out reviews of this newest books many readers gave it four and five stars.  That is the wonderful thing about books and readers.  Sometimes a reader loves a particular story, but that same story doesn't resonant with another reader.  For me this wasn't his best story, but I know many other readers really enjoyed it.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  3 STARS out of 5 Stars

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