Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Anxious People - Fredrik Backman

I picked up Fredrik Backman's latest novel, Anxious People, without a clue of what I might find inside. But having enjoyed all of his previous books, I just knew I would love this one too.

"A bank robbery. A hostage drama." That's the opening line. And from there we 'meet' the robber, the hostages and the two policemen tasked with the case.

Anxious People is told by an unnamed, prescient narrator  who observes the goings on and the players with an eye for the human condition. There are so many truths on each and every page of Anxious People. Situations, circumstances, hopes, fears and so much more - including anxiety. "Because there's such an unbelievable amount that we're all supposed to be able to cope with these days." (Uh huh, kind of right on the money in these uncertain times)

There's at least one, if not more, observation that every reader will personally connect with - truths, wisdom and introspection. But....I don't want you to get the idea that is a strictly serious book. It is, but it isn't. I found myself laughing out loud so many times. Some of the police interviews read like a 'who's on first' skit. And each of the players is, well, quite the character. Every one of them is quirky, unique and so well drawn. I had my favorites. But, as more and more of their stories is revealed, I found my perceptions and opinions changing with each new chapter.

And....there's the crime to solve as well. It's not as straightforward as you might have assumed. Backman is a clever, clever wordsmith. I had my suppositions (happily) changed many times as the book progressed. And slowly but surely, the ties and tendrils of fate start knitting together the lives of the characters. A lovely serendipitous circle.

"But when you get home this evening, when this day is over and the night takes us, allow yourself a deep breath. Because we made it through this day as well. There'll be another one along tomorrow."

Such a fantastic read on so many levels. Absolutely recommended. Read an excerpt of Anxious People.


Kay said...

Do you know that I've not read any books by this author as yet? I know. I should. Ha! However, this might be a good place for me to start. This has certainly been an 'anxious' year.

Luanne said...

Really! That's surprising. I think you would like them. They're all kind of different. I think my fave is Britt-Marie Was Here.