Best Fredrik Backman books review stack recommendations

My favorite current and contemporary author is Fredrik Backman. A Swedish best-selling author is also – according to his Instagram profile –”A loud person and weak swimmer. Writes things. Also eats things.” He’s being modest as he writes brilliant books – fiction and non-fiction. All Fredrik Backman books are originally published in Swedish (because, well, that’s where he lives) so I’m always excited for the English-translated version of his books to arrive.

Fredrik Backman is brilliant in creating characters that are relatable and likeable in spite of all their flaws. I honestly have not met a Fredrik Backman book that I haven’t loved. And I’ve read all of them. It was pretty challenging to force-rank them. I mean, how do you rank the best Fredrik Backman books when they are all 5* and 4*? So I did my best.

Are you a Fredrik Backman fan? If so, do you agree with my list of the best Fredrik Backman books that I forced-ranked? Here are my one-word book reviews and ratings for all the best Fredrik Backman books (when I say all the best that means all of them). I’ve also included some of my favorite Fredrik Backman quotes.


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Best Fredrik Backman books ranked with one-word book reviews

Here are the top 10 Fredrik Backman books along with my one-word book reviews, ratings and favorite quote from each. And why only one-word? To give you more time to read these fabulous Fredrik Backman books.

10. One-word book review for Things My Son Needs to Know About the World by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Mini-autobiography
One-word book review: Parenthood: 4*

Favorite quote from Things My Son Needs to Know About the World

“I want you to always remember that you can become whatever you want to become, but that’s nowhere near as important as knowing that you can be exactly who you are.”


9. One-word book review for Us Against You (Beartown #2) A Novel by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction
One-word book review: Divided: 4*

Favorite quote from Us Against You (Beartown #2): A Novel

“Culture isn’t just what we encourage, but what we allow to happen.”


8. One-word book review for Anxious People: A Novel by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction
One-word book review: Interconnection: 5*

Favorite quote from Anxious People: A Novel

“Have you ever held a three-year-old by the hand on the way home from preschool? You’re never more important than you are then.”


7. One-word book review for The Winners by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary fiction
One-word book review: Engrossing: 5 stars

Favorite quote from The Winners

“The very finest thing you can give a child is somewhere to belong.”

6. One-word book review for The Deal of a Lifetime by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Fiction Novella
One-word book review: Legacy: 5*

Favorite quote from The Deal of a Lifetime

“It’s bloody awful to admit to yourself that you’re not the kind of person you’ve always thought you were.”


5. One-word book review for And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer: A Novella by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Fiction Novella
One-word book review: Aging: 5*

Favorite quote from And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer: A Novella

“It’s an awful thing to miss someone who’s still here.”


4. One-word book review for Beartown: A Novel by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction
One-word book review: Hockey: 5*

Favorite quote from Beartown: A Novel

“The love a parent feels for a child is strange. There is a starting point to our love for everyone else, but not this person. This one we have always loved, we loved them before they even existed.”



3. One-word book review for A Man Called Ove: A Novel by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction
One-word book review: Purpose: 5*

Favorite quote from A Man Called Ove: A Novel

“You only need one ray of light to chase all the shadows away.”


Editorial note: I was having difficulty deciding on which of the following two Fredrik Backman books I loved the best, Britt-Marie Was Here or My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry. I originally gave Britt-Marie Was Here the edge and put it in the number one slot and My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry as number two. However, after sleeping on it. I still can’t decide so decided it’s a tie. However, Britt-Marie first appears in the book My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry so I would recommend reading that book first. It’ll give you a better understanding of Britt-Marie’s background story.


1. (tie) One-word book review for Britt-Marie Was Here: A Novel by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction
One-word book review: Reinvention: 5*

Favorite quote from Britt-Marie Was Here

“At a certain age, almost all the questions a person asks him or herself are really just about one thing: how should you live your life?”



1. (tie) One-word book review for My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry: A Novel by Fredrik Backman

Book genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction
One-word book review: Atonement: 5*

Favorite quote from My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry: A Novel

“Having a grandmother is like having an army. This is a grandchild’s ultimate privilege: knowing that someone is on your side, always, whatever the details.”




See related post for more of my one-word book reviews in most genres: 2022 one-word book reviews and recommendations

Pin it for later: The best Fredrik Backman books ranked

Best Fredrik Backman books review stack recommendations

Book covers of Fredrik Backman books


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Author

Twin Cities-based blogger sharing memorable emptynester, solo, family and girlfriend-getaway adventures, as well as my day hiking adventures (including all 66 Minnesota state parks), latest book reviews, and updates on my quest for the best adult mac and cheese. Also two WIPs: historical fiction and psychological thriller

41 comments

  1. I haven’t heard of this author before, but judging by the quotes alone, sounds like a good read. May have to look into a couple of them! Thanks for the review!

    1. Ha! I thought Fredrik Backman’s bio was pretty clever and humble. Reminds me that I should take a look at my own and be a little more creative and witty.

  2. I have not read any of Fredrik Backman books, but I love the quotes you pulled from each. The insight and truth in the quotes are spot on.

  3. My mother-in-law actually lent me My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman…it’s actually sitting on my nightstand now. I need to pick it back up again, I got really into it and then mom life took over! I love how you did the one word reviews of his books, very clever!

    1. Thank you! I hope you love My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell you She’s Sorry as much as I did! I thought it would be easier and time-efficient to do one-word book reviews, but it is actually a little challenging.

  4. These Fredrik Backman books look fantastic. I love the quotes that you included to pique my curiosity even more! I especially love the quote from Beartown and Things My Son Needs to Know About the World. I read that one to my 17 yr old son just now…he smiled. 🙂

  5. The quote from And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer: “It’s an awful thing to miss someone who’s still here.” really got me. This is exactly how I feel about my mom.

  6. I haven’t heard of Fredrik Backman. But, I can see by the titles and your favorite quotes why there is a reason to read them. I hold my preschooler grandson’s hand to pick my granddaughter up from school. And, I hold my granddaughter’s hand on the way home from school.

  7. I read four of the Fredrik Backman’s books and I am absolutely obsessed with his work. The first book that i read was My Grandmother Asked me to Tell You She’s Sorry, which i read with my 11 yo daughter. She laughed, i cried, which is very characteristic for his books – he can make you laugh and cry within two sentences. And i mean it – belly laughs and real tears. His books are about flawed dysfunctional people who find their place in this world. There is a lot of sweetness in his writing – sometimes it feels a bit too much, but it is a feel good sweetness that would make you believe that this world is not that bad after all.
    I only read the top three on your list and Anxious People, which is your #7. For me Anxious People was the best one. Ove – #2, then Grandma and then Britt Mary. Having said that, i read them in Russian and of course translation changes a book whether we want that or not, so maybe if i read them in English or Swedish my ranking would be different. All in all = great books!

    1. Thank you so much for your comments. Always love hearing from other Fredrik Backman fans! And, honestly, my ranking of the best Fredrik Backman books could change daily as I love every single one of them!

  8. My first introduction to Fredrik Backman was at the local cinema club when they showed A Man called Ove. Then I found he had written other books, that was it I had to read them.
    So six books later my favourite is Anxious People, he just understands people and life, I laughed and cried, just wonderful.

    1. So true! I love all of Fredrik Backman books. I’ve seen the film adaptation of Beartown, but I haven’t seen the movie based on A Man Called Ove. I need to watch it!

    1. I hope you love Fredrik Backman’s books as much as I do. He is so gifted in storytelling and making flawed characters relatable and lovable.

    1. Awesome! I’m a huge Fredrik Backman fan and also loved A Man Called Ove. We saw the Tom Hanks movie based on the book over the weekend and loved that also.

  9. I finished The Winners last night… my eyes are swollen and I am bereft that the characters of Beartown are done.

    This last book left me in pieces, but I am so thankful that Backman wrote it. At some point, I will reread the trilogy but not yet… I’m a bit too raw to do that now. I have other Backman books to keep me company.

    1. Thank you so kindly! I ranked Anxious People #8. I know some people will rank it higher. Just so hard to do when I love all Fredrik Backman’s books!

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