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Dreaming about Books #TranslatedThursday

  • Submitted: 30th August 2018

I do love a book not yet translated as there’s always the chance that it will be and that even more readers will get to enjoy the stories tucked away in another country and culture.

The one today comes from Sweden and is perfect for fans of Fanny Blake and Jenny Colgan to name but two for the way she writes about female friendships and the worries of women approaching 50 at a crossroads in their lives. It’s not just the young twenty year olds who have these worries. Often later in life, they’re more pronounced as you hope to have your life sorted by then, but life has a funny way of pulling that carpet from out beneath you…

The Author:

Agneta Sjodin (c) Harper Collins Nordic

Agneta Sjodin (c) Harper Collins Nordic

 

I recognised the author’s name Agneta Sjodin from the TV as living in Sweden I watched a lot of TV so it’s nice to read a novel by someone who  indirectly helped my Swedish. And there’s lots of nice literary references here too as they talk about life through the wisdom of Hemingway, Kirkegaard and even Harry Potter!

Agneta Sjodin's new book!

Agneta Sjodin’s new book!

The plot:

The well-known TV presenter Helena is at a crossroads in her life. Her marriage is over, her daughter has moved out, and the lustre of the single life is now tarnished and now, even her TV career is under threat. There have been many changes within the industry since the #MeToo movement gathered momentum and changes are happening across the board.

So what’s a girl to do but get her friends together and discover which direction their life is now going to take?

Anna, Karin and Jossan are there for her and in several vignettes, we travel across Stockholm to meet them having coffee, taking about life, wandering the streets and chatting about nothing yet everything.

It’s then when  Helena starts to keep a diary – a dream book – in which she writes down her hopes and wishes for the future. She’s approaching 50 so does that mean the good times are over?

Writing her hopes and dreams down in a diary is going to have unexpected consequences…

 

Friendships:

A book for fans of Fanny Blake in the UK in that it’s a story about older women and their relationships with one another.  Not a story of a young girl heading out in to the world, but a woman approaching 50 and deciding what to do with the rest of her life. People assume you’ve got your life on track by 50, but with marriage breakups and children leaving home, it’s often the very time that life is the least stable of all.

Even though these women are older than me, that didn’t matter as their hopes and dreams are universal. The way the author writes is quite lyrical and makes you feel close to the characters as they weave their way through  this part of their lives.

 

Setting

Set in Stockholm, there’s lovely mentions of the cafes and places the characters meet such as Djurgården and Birgir Jarlsgatan where one of the characters utters the phrase : What is life without good, wise friends?

The city is a backdrop but it’s a stunning backdrop!

Inspiration:

Not a bad idea in life to write your own “Dream Diary” to see where you’re going, what’s important in life and finding out what makes you happy! I’m off to start my own now. Happy Dreaming!

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