The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend
Sara travels from her home in Sweden to Broken Wheel, Iowa to stay with her pen pal, Amy. Unfortunately, Amy dies before Sara arrives. Sara stays anyway--her life in Sweden lackluster. The town of Broken Wheel takes her in, and she opens a bookstore with Amy's books determined to get every citizen reading. Sara's visa, however, will eventually expire.
Character is a key word to describe the people of Broken Wheel. Every single character is quite unique, if not quirky. As I read the the novel, I became quite fond of Sara. I also enjoyed learning about the beloved, but deceased, Amy. Every character in Broken Wheel reveals more about Amy and the type of person she was.
Sara is an avid reader, at one point even stating out loud that she prefers to books to people. By the end of the novel, she decides she does get more of her relationships with people. Regardless of which side of this debate you come down on, as a book lover, it made me question why I read and enjoy fictional worlds so much.
What I wanted more of:
Letters. Throughout the novel various letters that Sara and Amy exchanged appear within the text. The letters contain most of the literary title dropping, as their letter exchange started because of books. In my opinion, a letter should have started each chapter. They are wonderful little nuggets.
The end of the novel also includes a list of all the books mentioned. I am thinking of using it as my next reading list.
"The strange woman standing on Hope's main street was so ordinary it was almost scandalous" -p3
"In books, people were charming and friendly, and life followed certain set patterns. If a person dreamed of doing something, then you could be certain that, by the end of the book, they would almost certainly be doing that very thing" -p49
Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars