The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend

  • by Katarina Bivald
  • Narrated by Fiona Hardingham, Lorelei King
  • 12 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

A debut novel to charm all listeners that shows beyond all doubt that it's books, along with love, that make the world go round.
It all began with a correspondence between two quite different women: 28-year-old Sara from Haninge, Sweden, and 65-year-old Amy from the small town of Broken Wheel, Iowa. After years of exchanging books, letters, and thoughts on the meaning of literature and life, Sara, mousy, disheveled, who has never been anywhere in her life - has really lived only for her work in a beloved bookshop, which has just closed its doors for the last time - bravely decides to accept her unknown friend's invitation to visit. But when she arrives, she finds her house empty, the funeral guests just heading home....
Sara finds herself alone. And what choice do the inhabitants of Broken Wheel have but to take care of their bewildered tourist? And what choice does Sara have, faced with a town where nobody reads and her desire to honour her friend, but to set up the perfect bookshop with all the books she and Amy shared - from Yann Martel's Life of Pi to Iris Murdoch and Jo Nesbo, to Bridget Jones and Doug Coupland's All Families Are Psychotic to Little House on the Prairie? And then watch as the townsfolk are, one by one, transformed in unexpected ways....
In the glorious tradition of 84 Charing Cross Road, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café, Will Schwalbe's The End of Your Life Book Club, Jane Austen, and movies such as You've Got Mail and Love Actually, The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend is a big-hearted, witty book about books, friendship, love - and always being open to the unexpected.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Disappointed - no depth & poor narration

I was disappointed in this book. While the characters were generally likable, they had no depth and the story was predictable. I love to read books which explore a characters love of books. Generally these types of stories make me feel "at home". I find myself in the characters. But this book didn't give me that lovely feeling. And I never fell in love with any of the characters. I always wanted the author to let me know them more. Sometimes when I am left wanting more it is a good thing, because I am anxious for a sequel. Not here - in this book. Here, I simply wanted more in this book.

Additionally, I found the narration confusing. The characters are Midwesterners and Swedish. The accents used seem to be British. Why?
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- Kelly

Waste of money

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

If the author had bothered to write about something or some place she knew about, the book might have been more successful.


What was most disappointing about Katarina Bivald’s story?

The Iowans in the story are completely unbelievable. I grew up in very small towns throughout the section of the state that she writes about. Iowans are readers, highly educated and quirky. They are to a fault honest and will tell you what they think. The story was completely unbelievable and not charming, more confusing because even as Americans the characters are unfamiliar.


Would you be willing to try another one of Fiona Hardingham and Lorelei King ’s performances?

Iowans do not have southern accents nor do they sound like they are from Appalachia. I thought perhaps the story was really placed in Tennessee? Iowans live in the Midwest and they sound like most newscasters in terms of accents.......even farmers sound that way.


What character would you cut from The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend?

None of these characters strike me as being from Iowa, nor do they strike as being American.......they are stateless and do not belong to a country as far as I can figure....I could cut them all.


Any additional comments?

I could not listen to this book after the first hour. I thought perhaps the author had attended the University of Iowa Writer's Workshop and her impressions of Iowa had been formed there. But then I found she had never even been to the United States. .

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- Creatures

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-19-2016
  • Publisher: Random House Audio