March 1, 2016

The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katrina Bivald - Review

Published: January 19, 2016
Number of pages: 400
Genre: Fiction

Once you let a book into your life, the most unexpected things can happen...

Broken Wheel, Iowa, has never seen anyone like Sara, who traveled all the way from Sweden just to meet her book-loving pen pal, Amy. When she arrives, however, she finds Amy's funeral guests just leaving. The residents of Broken Wheel are happy to look after their bewildered visitor-there's not much else to do in a dying small town that's almost beyond repair.

You certainly wouldn't open a bookstore. And definitely not with the tourist in charge. You'd need a vacant storefront (Main Street is full of them), books (Amy's house is full of them), and...customers.

The bookstore might be a little quirky. Then again, so is Sara. But Broken Wheel's own story might be more eccentric and surprising than she thought.

A heartwarming reminder of why we are booklovers, this is a sweet, smart story about how books find us, change us, and connect us.

What did I think of this book:
I just had to read this book as it is set in a small town in Iowa, about pen pals and books all things that are part of my life. I too felt bad for Sara when she arrived to find Amy dead and then told she was to stay in her house. How weird and horrible that had to be. A stranger in a new town and all she knew was what Amy sent in letters to her. There were a few things about that are mentioned in the book that hit home with me. Like how Amy felt about Toni Morrison's book Beloved. The mention of Sloppy Joes being invented in Sioux City which is basically where I am from and the mention of Taco Johns - one of my favorite places to eat. I enjoyed reading the letters that Amy writes to Sara. It makes me think of my pen pals. I so enjoy writing to them and hearing from them. It is neat to learn about other countries and their customs and culture. Another thing I liked is the mention of all the books and the little tidbits she gives about them. She is well versed in all genres of books. In writing this the author really captured small town America and brought back memories of home for me. There is so much more I want to say but do not want to ruin the story or give anything away so I am telling you to go out and read this book. I think you will enjoy it. 

About the author:
Katarina Bivald grew up working part-time in a bookshop. Today she lives outside of Stockholm, Sweden, with her sister and as many bookshelves she can get by her. She'scurrently trying to persuade her sister that having a shelf for winter jackets and shoes is completely unneccessary. There should be enough space for a book shelf or two instead. Limited success so far. Apparantly, her sister is also stubbornly refusing to even discuss using the bath room to store books.

Katarina Bivald sometimes claims that she still hasn't decided whether she prefer books or people but, as we all know, people are a non-starter. Even if you do like them, they're better in books. Only possible problem: reading a great book and having noone to recommend it to.

Läsarna i Broken Wheel rekommenderar/The Readers in Broken Wheel Recommend is her first novel.

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