For my Throwback Thursday Book Review today I’m reposting my 2015 review of the incredible My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologises (originally known as My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry) by the incomparable Fredrik Backman. Thanks to Netgalley and Sceptre Books for my original copy of this book, although I do now also own a physical copy that I bought for myself as I adored this book so much!
About the book:
A must-read for fans of Rachel Joyce’s The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry and Maria Semple’s Where’d You Go, Bernadette
Heartbreaking and hilarious in equal measure, the new novel by the author of the internationally bestselling phenomenon A Man Called Ove will charm and delight anyone who has ever had a grandmother.
Everyone remembers the smell of their grandmother’s house.
Everyone remembers the stories their grandmother told them.
But does everyone remember their grandmother flirting with policemen? Driving illegally?
Breaking into a zoo in the middle of the night? Firing a paintball gun from a balcony in her dressing gown?
Seven-year-old Elsa does.
Some might call Elsa’s granny ‘eccentric’, or even ‘crazy’. Elsa calls her a superhero. And granny’s stories, of knights and princesses and dragons and castles, are her superpower. Because, as Elsa is starting to learn, heroes and villains don’t always exist in imaginary kingdoms; they could live just down the hallway.
As Christmas draws near, even the best superhero grandmothers may have one or two things they’d like to apologise for. And, in the process, Elsa can have some breath-taking adventures of her own . . .
About the author:
Fredrik Backman is a Swedish blogger, columnist and author. His debut novel A Man Called Ove was a number 1 bestseller across Scandinavia and has sold over one million copies worldwide. My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologises, Fredrik’s second novel, also went straight to number 1 in Sweden on publication in 2014.
Anything I can come up with to say in this review will not do this book justice. To say I loved it would be an understatement. ‘My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry’ by Fredrik Backman made me feel so many emotions I can’t even begin to describe them. It’s a book about Elsa, a seven year old girl who is different from most of those around her. It is also a book about her eccentric old granny and the magical fairy tales she shared with the granddaughter she adores. It’s about family relationships and how each one is different, but still as important in very unique ways. And superheroes. We should never forget the superheroes!
The book twists and turns and takes you places you never would have expected, with a cast of characters that are memorable and move you in so many different ways. It made me laugh out loud and it made me cry. Sometimes just gentle tears, but at others it made me cry so much it left me feeling emotionally drained. It is a story about love, loss, relationships and the fact that being different is something to embrace with every fibre of your being.
It resonated with me on a very personal level, as Elsa’s relationship with her Granny made me think of the relationship I have with my own tiny grandchildren, and how being a grandparent can change and enrich your life more than you ever would have thought possible.
‘My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry’ is a beautifully written book that really does make you think. It tackles the subjects of love, loss and life in a heartbreakingly beautiful way, and shows how you can come to terms with the loss of a loved one without ever having to really say goodbye.
So in the immortal words of Elsa’s Granny: “See you later!”
This is a book that will stay with me for a long time to come and is one that I highly recommend.
An indescribable and incredible story that I will never forget.
My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologises is available to buy now: Amazon UK