Fredrik Backman is easily one of my favorite authors. He consistently writes beautiful, gut twisting novels filled with believable characters who are often painted as fairly average, ordinary people thrust into somewhat extraordinary scenarios. If you haven’t read Beartown and Us Against You you’re really missing out on poetically breaking your heart into itty bitty little pieces.
“This story is about a lot of things, but mostly about idiots. So it needs saying from the outset that it’s always very easy to declare that other people are idiots, but only if you forget how idiotically difficult being human is.”
Anxious People is, at its core, the story of a bank robber who flees the scene, takes some hostages and then disappears once the hostages are released. The story is told through flashbacks by the hostages as they are interviewed by two policer officers who happen to be father and son. The hostages, people who were going through an open house at the apartment they were subsequently held in, gave Backman a lot of flexibility for both humor and heart because he had such a variety of age ranges and personality differences.
I was convinced within the first few chapters that I “figured out” where the missing bank robber went. And Fredrik convinced me he was a far superior writer than I was giving him credit for.
I know this is the shortest, barest bones of reviews but I don’t want to give too much away here because letting the story develop on its own was absolute perfection. So my short and sweet review is: this is a beautiful novel, impeccably written and you just need to go read it please.
“We need to be allowed to convince ourselves that we’re more than the mistakes we made yesterday. That we are all of our next choices, too, all of our tomorrows.”
6 Stars; rounded down because CBR only goes to 5