A nice refreshing book, written by a Swedish author, with a gentle yet really good humour. The book transports the reader to a block with multiple families whose stories are blended together by a single person with a big heart but a little crazy – a granny!
Of course, in order to be a granny, you need to have a grandson… or a granddaughter. In this case, it’s all about Elsa, the protagonist of the book, a girl no older than eight, really smart, dreamy and… brave! She’s a wonderful character to follow, quite surprising as I never before read a book with a child who not only knows so many things, but also understands some matters better than adults! Before Elsa’s grandmother dies, she traces a treasure hunt her daughter to find a number of letters where she’s apologising to the different people living under the same roof. How I already mentioned above, Elsa is a really smart girl and with that comes the curiosity. Therefore, we get to know the stories of the different people who had their lives tangled with Elsa’s granny, but the young one starts to question the involvement of her grandmother in her own family, getting to feel let down.
This is a story of a young girl who gets to know her family and the events of its past. It is a beautiful book to be read by the people who need to remember of their childhood, but I warn you: you are going to get into Elsa’s character more than you’d imagine it’s possible. “Children are not allowed to know this”, “you’re too young for this” etc are problems that Elsa has to constantly confront in order to get herself heard, although she’s really mature for her age – as all of us in our childhood.
This book took me through a roller-coaster of emotions. It made me laugh and cry, it made me panic and, although at the beginning I though this lecture was a bit boring, I got to a point where I couldn’t let the book out of my hand. I emphasised a lot with the characters, partly because they were so well contoured, partly because some of them reminded me of myself in different periods of my life.
The interesting thing about this story is that it’s blending the reality with the imaginary world the granny created for her granddaughter. There were moments where the life got tricky and it didn’t play by the fairytale’s rules. There were moments it didn’t go the other way around. The society is questioned, different moral values are questioned, took from different perspectives and, overall, it makes you question how was your own grandmother before she got to become a granny!
It was a story that evolved in a progressive manner. The characteristic humour of this book made me laugh with all my soul, as I never laughed before reading a book. It was a nice lecture that didn’t need a lot of focus, a lecture for a lazy winter evening. This book was an absolute delight for the creative and beautiful way it was written, and for the fact that it reminded me that all the children of seven need superheroes!