After I read My Name Is Ove, I decided I needed to read more of Fredrik Backman (he has several books). The next one I picked up was Britt-Marie Was Here. It was really good as well. It was a little slow to start, but I thought Ove was too. It just takes a little bit to get going, and then you are hooked.
Britt-Marie is the type of woman who needs things to be a certain way – the cutlery drawer must be organized a certain way, dinner is always at 6 (because what kind of person eats doesn’t eat dinner at 6?), windows must be extremely clean, balconies are preferred. Britt-Marie isn’t the type to judge, of course, but some things just need to be the way they are meant to be. When Britt-Marie finds herself alone and jobless after leaving her cheating husband, she takes a job at a closing recreation center in a nearby town that is all but shut down. She soon becomes involved in the daily life of the townspeople, who are all a little bit odd, and somehow finds herself as the soccer coach for the group of kids in town.
Britt-Marie Was Here is a book about self discovery and about finding yourself after being lost for a very long time (or perhaps really finding yourself for the first time). Britt-Marie is seriously socially awkward. She doesn’t understand jokes (and she hates to be laughed at), and she doesn’t do well with small talk. She cleans like crazy and is obsessed with a certain brand of window cleaner. She is definitely an odd character. Actually everyone in the book is odd.
It is such a funny book. It is also really heartwarming and also sad. I laughed out loud, I cried. It is a feel good book, and you can’t help but love Britt-Marie.
Fredrik Backman is an incredible writer. I love that he isn’t overly descriptive. He is concise and to the point. I actually don’t like authors that are really overly descriptive. If you have to be that descriptive, I don’t think you are that good of a writer, but that is just me. But he is the tpe that you can see the characters and the setting so clearly without the lengthy descriptions.
Have you read anything by Fredrik Backman? If so, what did you think?