Title: Britt-Marie Was Here
Author: Fredrik Backman
Pages: 296
Publisher: Sceptre
Published date: 31 October 2014
Genre: Humorous Fiction

Britt-Marie can’t stand mess. A disorganized cutlery drawer ranks high on her list of unforgivable sins. She is not one to judge others—no matter how ill-mannered, unkempt, or morally suspect they might be. It’s just that sometimes people interpret her helpful suggestions as criticisms, which is certainly not her intention. But hidden inside the socially awkward, fussy busybody is a woman who has more imagination, bigger dreams, and a warmer heart that anyone around her realizes.

When Britt-Marie walks out on her cheating husband and has to fend for herself in the miserable backwater town of Borg—of which the kindest thing one can say is that it has a road going through it—she finds work as the caretaker of a soon-to-be demolished recreation center. The fastidious Britt-Marie soon finds herself being drawn into the daily doings of her fellow citizens, an odd assortment of miscreants, drunkards, layabouts. Most alarming of all, she’s given the impossible task of leading the supremely untalented children’s soccer team to victory. In this small town of misfits, can Britt-Marie find a place where she truly belongs? (Source: Goodreads)

If you can be heard then you exist.

This is my first read by Fredrik Backman who is a well-known author. This book is originally written in Swedish, but has been translated into English to reach a wider readers.

Going into this one, I don't know what to expect. I was scared to start reading a book by a new author because I'm someone who reads books from authors I have established as my favourite, authors I can trust. 

But this book was a delight! It is warm, touching, moving and hilarious. It makes you feel all sorts of things, all in one book with less than 300 pages. 

In the beginning, Britt-Marie was a bit annoying. She's an old person, so she nags a lot. She's a perfectionist and judgmental (though she refused to say it so many times). Despite her flaws, she's actually funny. I love how she made people laugh, yet clueless about it. 

This book intentionally made Britt-Marie an unlikeable character at first. Later in the book, her character development was beautiful and endearing. I love the sense of humor. It fits mine so well. I laughed so hard occasionally. It wasn't just a smirk, but a full-on laugh. To top it all off, the story is really raw and heart-warming. I'm a sucker for heart-warming and found family relationship. It gave me hope that kindness isn't dead. 

All the characters felt real. There are many characters in the book, and I admit I got confused a bit in the beginning as to who's who. But it was just a minor problem, it didn't affect my major love for the book. 

And the writing-style is not too dense, yet poetic and meaningful at the same time. Regarding the plot, I really love how Backman adds football element into the book. As someone who does not play sports but is mesmerized by the brotherhood between the team members like me, I really appreciate the sports element in this book. 

The plot is simple, and you might feel like there's nothing happened. But the characters made the story colourful, filling the spaces between the lines with rainbows. This book taught me to find my sunny stories in my life. I love the ending. It gives me courage and makes me stop and think about life and how should I live it. 

Rate: ★★★★★

Because life is more than the shoes your feet are in. More than the person you are. It's the togetherness. 

(If you wish to buy the book, you can click the link above. I'm not monetized, I just want to help you out) 


  1. i also prefer to read from someone who i kmew or hit atm . well the writer i is good them if they able to potray the character so well

  2. seems like a very interesting storyline :)

  3. The book sounds lovely, hope to get a copy :((

    1. you can get it using the link in the post!! kat bookxcess murah jee

  4. if we can do sweden and read it, it would be amazing right ? sometimes ada ayat yg actually not really accurate with the translation

    1. true, some parts of the translation is a bit off but still understandable hehe