17 August, 2016

My grandmother asked me to tell you she's sorry : a novel by Fredrik Backman

There are now many books where fantasy and this world overlap. This is not one of them. Well.. not quite....

Elsa is an exceptional child, nearly 8, her character has been formed in part by her rebellious and chaotic grandmother. This grandmother had a whole interesting and important life before Elsa was born but now she spends as much time as she can with her. She is a brilliant storyteller, original but not above pinching good elements out of Harry Potter, Grimm's fairy tales or comic books. She has always been chaotic, but sometimes that is just what you need. She was a surgeon operating in countries disintegrating with civil strife. When all around her was falling apart, she could cope.

When Grandma is hospitalized she gives Elsa, her knight errant, the task of delivering apologies to the people that she thinks that she has failed, and thus for the first time, in the real world Elsa meets a wurse, the fabled loyal, brave, ferocious creature of the land of Almost-Awake.  

As well as a great story, this is an education in how to handle (and how not to handle) difficult people.  Funny in spots, very wise in others.

Author: Fredrik Backman

Reviewed by Christine O.

Christine O has worked in North Shore libraries for over 20 years.  She likes her fiction to be believable and her non-fiction to be accessible.

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