Books, Books, Books with Sue Giustino

Author Fredrick Bachman

Fredrick Bachman

Years ago, someone in my book club recommended we read A Man Called Ove. It was a great read, both entertaining and witty, with a tender side. After finishing the book, I watched and also enjoyed the 2015 Swedish version of the movie.  Since then, it’s been made into a movie titled A Man Called Otto, starring Tom Hanks. In Otto, the characters speak English and live in America as opposed to the original where they talk in Swedish and reside in Sweden.

That was my initial introduction to Fredrik Backman – a Swedish author, blogger, and columnist. After Ove, I wanted to try more of his works, so I read and enjoyed, Britt-Marie Was Here and Anxious People. The creative way he allows the reader into the ‘head’ of his characters through their thoughts as well as dialogue makes them truly come alive. Quirky, witty, sarcastic…sensitive. Of A Man Called Ove, Bachman says it’s “a thoughtful exploration of the profound impact one life has on countless others.”  I believe this to be the theme throughout all of his books, at least those that I’ve read.

His latest works are actually part of a trilogy- Beartown, Us Against You, and The Winners. The Beartown Series centers around a remote Nordic community, simultaneously unified and divided by ice hockey. More than just a sport, it’s the heartbeat of the town. With a coming-of-age theme which Bachman examines through the prevalent ‘groupthink’ mentality of his characters he exposes their hopes, secrets, and moral failures, as well as the courage of individuals to stand apart from the crowd.

Unlike his other books, this series touches upon ‘team mentality’ ideals prevalent in sports, gender inequality in society, and varied levels of corruption around and infiltrated within towns and sports.

This series has been made into an HBO mini-series. I haven’t seen it yet, but the reviews are good!

Bachman’s writing carefully examines humanity, through thought provoking situations and character interactions. Each of his stories expose how closely and intimately our choices affect others in a multitude of ways. His writing style, utilizing varied points of view, creatively brings to light many sides of situations we all encounter at some point in our lives.

Check out his complete collection at: