The New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove and My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry “returns with this heartwarming story about a woman rediscovering herself after a personal crisis…fans of Backman will find another winner in these pages” (Publishers Weekly).
Britt-Marie can’t stand mess. A disorganized cutlery drawer ranks high on her list of unforgivable sins. She is not one to judge others—no matter how ill-mannered, unkempt, or morally suspect they might be. It’s just that sometimes people interpret her helpful suggestions as criticisms, which is certainly not her intention.
But hidden inside the socially awkward, fussy busybody is a woman who has more imagination, bigger dreams, and a warmer heart that anyone around her realizes.
When Britt-Marie walks out on her cheating husband and has to fend for herself in the miserable backwater town of Borg—of which the kindest thing one can say is that it has a road going through it—she finds work as the caretaker of a soon-to-be demolished recreation center. The fastidious Britt-Marie soon finds herself being drawn into the daily doings of her fellow citizens, an odd assortment of miscreants, drunkards, layabouts. Most alarming of all, she’s given the impossible task of leading the supremely untalented children’s soccer team to victory. In this small town of misfits, can Britt-Marie find a place where she truly belongs?
Funny and moving, sweet and inspiring, Britt-Marie Was Here celebrates the importance of community and connection in a world that can feel isolating.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
She may be overly obsessive about cleaning and a tad too blunt with her opinions, but Britt-Marie’s flaws just make us love her more. The 63-year-old heroine of Fredrik Backman’s Britt-Marie Was Here has left her cheating husband and moved to the dying Swedish village of Borg, where she takes a job at the local rec center—nearly the only functioning business in the once-bustling town. From her unexpected talents as a first-time youth soccer coach to her hilariously judgy inner monologue, Britt-Marie’s intensity is a lot, which makes her journey towards self-discovery as hilarious as it is poignant and heartwarming. Pitiful Borg may not seem like the ideal place to undergo a personal transformation, but Britt-Marie and her new community have something incredibly valuable to offer each other: a reminder of how good it feels to be needed.
The bestselling author of A Man Called Ove returns with this heartwarming story about a woman rediscovering herself after a personal crisis. Sixty-three-year-old Britt-Marie is a gentle, extremely straightforward and believably flawed protagonist who, after walking out on her husband of 40 years, gets a job as the caretaker of the almost-defunct Recreational Center in the fictional European town of Borg. Here she meets several characters including two young children Vega and Omar, whose off-beat personalities and lifestyles contribute to her growing self-confidence and growth. Backman reveals Britt-Marie's need for order and her obsession with bicarbonate soda and Faxin a cleaning agent with clear, tight descriptions. The true highlight is Backman's exposition of Britt-Marie's subtle actions like the way she rubs her ring finger and thoughts. These details of Britt-Marie's character, what her husband cited as her being "socially incompetent," increasingly endear her to the reader. Insightful and touching, this is a sweet and inspiring story about truth and transformation. Fans of Backman's will find another winner in these pages.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I loved A Man Called Ove. This book was similar but slower to me. About a third of the way through I almost gave up on it but forced myself to keep reading and was glad I did. A sweet story but definitely not fast-paced. The second half is better than the first.