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The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden

3.73  ·  Rating Details ·  26,753 Ratings  ·  2,987 Reviews
On June 14, 2007, the king and the prime minister of Sweden went missing from a gala banquet at the royal castle. Later it was said that both had fallen ill, but the truth is different. The real story starts much earlier, in 1961, with the birth of Nombeko Mayeki in a shack in Soweto. Nombeko was fated to grow up fast and die early in her poverty-stricken township, be it f ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published April 29th 2014 by Ecco (first published 2013)
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Sarah Robinson i disagree.. i read it exactly because i found 'climbed out the window' a bit different and quite entertaining, so i quickly ordered and read this one…morei disagree.. i read it exactly because i found 'climbed out the window' a bit different and quite entertaining, so i quickly ordered and read this one too and would rate it higher. read them both. i think the completely far fetched spun out tied up in circles plots are a good antidote from the norm. (less)

Community Reviews

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Myriam Schärz
Feb 24, 2014 Myriam Schärz rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was so bad it was a real chore trying to finish reading it that turned almost into agony. What a waste of precious time much better spent picking your nose, getting drunk all alone or sorting dust into similarly colored piles.
Loved his first book! Laughed so many times and still remember it vividly as if I had seen it as a movie. This here on the other hand is not funny. Not once. Not even remotely.
I loved Allen and liked most of the other characters in the 100 year old. Here I didn't
switterbug (Betsey)
May 12, 2014 switterbug (Betsey) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
What a festival of adventure, rogue behavior, a non-existent twin who exists, and a fugitive atomic bomb that also doesn't exist--but weighs several megatons and is very difficult to hide. The plucky and delightful protagonist is Nombeko, who at the start of the novel is fourteen and cleaning latrines in Soweto, her hometown. It is the seventies, and apartheid is the social/political/economic cloud Nombeko lives under, and yet she makes the best of her situation, and eventually saves the world. ...more
May 22, 2014 Valarie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
At almost exactly halfway through the book, it became taxing to read. The wit and quirky characters were replaced with improbable scenarios. It was as if a lazier, time crunched writer completed a very well begun piece of literature.
Apr 09, 2014 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: five-star-books
What do you get when you combine a South African woman named Nombeko who is born into the slums of Soweto only to be smart enough to make fools of her oppressors with her intelligence and finds her way to Sweden? When there she meets a man who theoretically does not exist and who has a twin brother with the same name who is inspired to complete what his late father could not do and kill the king of Sweden. Throw in the crazy brothers equally crazy girlfriend, the Prime Minister of Sweden, Chines ...more
This book suffers a bit from comparing it with The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared which was delightful in all respects. This follow up is also entertaining and quirky but never quite as charming. It is also quite a lot too long and the middle section is very, very slow. I especially enjoyed Nombeka and sometimes felt there was not enough of her and too much of others. Nevertheless I did enjoy much of the book and can imagine it being made in to a movie like it ...more
Apr 21, 2016 FeReSHte rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sweden
اگه از کتاب های جدی خسته این ، اگه مغزتون مدتیه کتاب های منتخبتون رو دفع می کنه چون خسته و بی حوصله ست و دنبال یه کتاب مفرح می گردین که عقل و منطق نقشی در روند حوادث داستانیش نداره و تقریبا هر دو صفحه یک اتفاق واقعا مهم و موثر میفته دست رو کتاب مناسبی گذاشتین. این تنها تجربه من از اثار یوناسون بود ولی شنیده ها و خونده های تجربه ی سایرین ثابت کرده یک کتاب از یوناسون به نمایندگی از همه ی آثارش برای همه ی عمرتون کفایت می کنه. یوناسون برای بی حوصلگی ها و خستگی ها می تونست حتی بهترین انتخاب باشه اگر ...more
Sep 25, 2014 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Let's say 4.25 stars.

This book is the most farcical, absurd story I have read since A Confederacy of Dunces.

It's best read with a complete suspension of belief, in as few sessions as possible. I found it hard to re-enter this state of disbelief, but once I found the groove again, I was laughing aloud once again.

The farcical plot comments on social roles & mores in two countries, one as north as one can go, the other as south as one can go, & throws in some jabs at the West, the Orient,
May 22, 2015 لیلی rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: دارمشان
یوناسن دقیقا داره خودشو تکرار میکنه! یعنی تقریبا هیچ نوآوری ای تو این کتابش وجود نداشت و واقعا همون مرد صد ساله بود با تغییر جزئی شخصیت ها و وقایع تاریخی!
ولی البته این باعث نمیشد که موقع خوندنش به آدم خوش نگذره...
واسه همین م این چار ستاره رو دادم!
هرچند، دیگه فکر نکنم دلم بخواد بازم کتابی از ش بخونم...
Nov 19, 2013 Peter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Eine komplexe Geschichte in einer Einfachheit erzählt, die einfach überwältigt. Nach dem „100jährigen …“ schafft es Jonasson natürlich wieder nicht nur einen kurzen Abschnitt aus einem Lebensteil zu erzählen sondern er benötigt vielmehr wieder ein halbes Jahrhundert. Er schafft es, dieses komplett mit Leben zu füllen.

Die absurden aber für gültige erklärten Realitäten, die in dem Buch vermittelt werden, sind wie Puzzleteile, die früher oder später und zumeist nur irgendwie passgenau ineinander gr
May 28, 2014 Ms.pegasus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone looking for a humor-filled book
This is a concatenation of outrageous improbabilities peopled by cartoonish characters capering across Potemkinesque landscapes. The story opens in Soweto with Nombeko, a fourteen year old latrine emptier (yes, that's this child's lifelong occupation, and she's one of the lucky ones who actually has a job). When her alcoholic boss gives some attitude to the wrong person, their pompous superior Piet du Toit appoints Nombeko as the new manager. Her first act is to hire her disgraced boss as her ow ...more
سیده زهرا
همونطور که پارسال از خوندن (پیرمرد صدساله ...) بسیار لذت بردم، امسال هم از (بی سوادی..) لذت بردم. در نوشته های یوناسن مدام غافلگیر میشید و مدام با طنزهای ظریف کتاب میخندید و با اینکه بسیاری از اتفاقات سیاسی جهان برای پیشبرد داستان استفاده میشه، برای کسانی مثل من که با سیاست سر و کاری ندارند، نه تنها خسته کننده نیست، بلکه گاهی اوقات آگاهی بخش هم هست.
پیشنهاد من اینه که با فاصله کم از هم، دو کتاب گفته شده رو نخونید. چون ممکنه به نظرتون شبیه به هم بیاد.
به عنوان آخرین تلاش برای ترغیب کردنتون برای خون
Jan 07, 2014 Yoka rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Net als het vorige boek van Jonas Jonasson (de 100-jarige man die uit het raam klom en verdween), heb ik ook “de zonderlinge avonturen…..” met een grote glimlach gelezen. Er gebeurt weer veel en het is soms te absurd voor woorden. Juist door het absurde kan ik hier wel van genieten. Het verhaal begint in Zuid-Afrika met Nombeko. Dit jonge meisje werkt bij de latrines, maar krijgt door haar slimheid de kans om aan dit smerige baantje te ontsnappen. Vanaf dat moment start een aaneenschakeling van ...more
The Girl Who Saved The King Of Sweden is the second book by Swedish journalist, media consultant and television producer, Jonas Jonasson. Determined not to be a latrine emptier all her life, Soweto youngster, Nombeko Mayeki uses her numerical skills and lots of hard work to advance her position. How she learns to read, ends up in possession of quite a few diamonds and later, something a whole lot more dangerous, is the story Jonasson tells in the first half of his book. It takes that long before ...more
Roya MD
Jul 17, 2016 Roya MD rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: disliked
اون قدرام بد نبودا... ولی احساس می کنم وقتمو تلف کردم
Христо Блажев
С атомна бомба в ръчния багаж:

Юнас Юнасон е отново тук – при това с неочаквано добра втора книга. Неочаквано, защото често го има оня момент, в който си казваш: “Абе няма как да е толкова добра, колкото беше първата!”, в случая “Стогодишният старец, който скочи през прозореца и изчезна”, но после се зачиташ и се забавляваш безспир часове наред. Дори си мисля, че “Неграмотното момиче, което можеше да смята” вероятно ще получи още по-добър прием от читател
May 12, 2015 Farzane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
داستان این کتاب در مورد دختر 14 ساله ی اهل آفریقای جنوبی به نام نومبکو مایکی است که در یکی از تخلیه چاهی های بزرگترین حلبی آبادهای آفریقای جنوبی در دهه ی 70 میلادی کار می کند. جایی که از نظر آماری، انسانها هیچ آینده ای ندارند. در همان ابتدای داستان می بینم که نومبکو به صورت خیلی اتفاقی به ریاست اداره تخلیه چاه ناحیه ب سوئتو منصوب می شود. دختری که با اینکه از هوش سرشاری برخوردار است هیچ گاه شانس تحصیل در مدرسه را به دست نیاورده است. چرا که : " از بین این همه کشور در دنیا، دخترک درست در آفریقای جن ...more
Bunga Mawar
Nah. Jangan baca buku ini kalau kamu tidak suka humor yang garing.

Atau kalau sebenarnya kamu tidak peduli pada hubungan internasional, yang sebenarnya tidak ada yang baru sejak berabad2 silam.

Iya, buku ini masih seperti buku pertama Jonasson yang ttg seorang manula 100 tahun yang ternyata punya hubungan dekat yang serba kebetulan dgn tokoh2 penting dunia. Di buku ini tokohnya adalah perempuan kulit hitam Afrika Selatan yang lahir tahun 1961 (kalo ga salah). Perempuan ini akhirnya tiba di Swedia,
mohsen pourramezani
این کتاب دوم یوناس یوناسون است که درایران منتشر میشود. این کتابی که من خواندم از نسخهی آلمانی ترجمه شده و نشر چشمه و چرخ آن را منتشر کرده است و یک ترجمه دیگر هم به اسم «دختری که پادشاه سوئد را نجات داد» وجود دارد که از متن انگلیسی ترجمه شده و نشر آموت منتشر کرده
کتاب روان و خوشخوانی است و مانند کتب اول نویسنده (مرد صد ساله ای که از پنجره پرید و ناپدید شد) داستان کتاب پر از اتفاق و ماجراهایی است که در یک بستر تاریخی واقعی (بعد از جنگ جهانی دوم تا سال 2010) و به زبان طنز روایت می شود

کتاب اول نویسند
Jun 06, 2015 Bắp rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
chợt nhận ra là giá sách quá thiếu những cuốn vui vẻ, yêu đời hoặc làm cho mình vui vẻ, yêu đời.

[Đọc lại - 3/9/2016]
Uyên Khôi
Apr 02, 2016 Uyên Khôi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hahaha hihihi hehehe =)) Trời ơi đây là tất cả những gì mà mình có thể nói về cuốn sách này. Lần đầu tiên mình thấy một cuốn sách mà làm mình buồn cười tới như vậy. Có nhiều khi đọc xong rồi mắc cười quá mà nghỉ lại thật ra mình lại… không nên cười. Mình chưa thấy có một ông tác giả nào mà miêu tả về cái chết của nhân vật mà lại bình thản như vậy. Mới câu trước còn sống, câu sau đã chết queo =))) Mà mình nói thiệt ý, cái ông này viết sách đọc hài kinh luôn =)))

Việt Nam có được nhắc đến 2-3 lần g
Jun 21, 2015 Skip rated it really liked it
E-book is on sale today (6-21-15) for $1.99 so if it sounds good to you, go get it RIGHT NOW.

The main character is a young black girl from Soweto, whose occupation at the outset is a latrine emptier. Through a series of strange, random and often involuntary events, she forces someone to teach her to read and then becomes an indentured servant to the incompetent man running the South Africa nuclear weapons program. If that sounds like a stretch, it's just the beginning as Nombeko Mayeki is clever
May 04, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Right from Nombeko Mayeki's humble beginnings as an "illiterate" latrine cleaner in apartheid South Africa, we are as impressed by her resilience and smarts as those with whom she interacts throughout her adventures. Starting as two very separate narratives, the historical and political events in the novel weave everything together seamlessly in Jonasson's quirky, humorous writing style. Nombeko finds herself leading a band of fugitives whose oddball members are all fleshed out in excellent deta ...more
Jan 16, 2015 Priya rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: give-up, 2015-to-read
I enjoyed it for the first few chapters 'coz of the writing style and the anticipation of a good story. And then somewhere along the way, the style became too boring for my liking and the story kept meandering this way and that...and well...I tried! But life's too short to force myself to complete a book that I'm clearly not enjoying, so there. It's probably a 2 or 3 star book if you dont mind the lack of descriptive prose and if dry humor is your thing. :-)
Λίνα Θωμάρεη
Έξυπνο, αστείο, συγκινητικό... Ένα βιβλίο που διαβάζεται ευχάριστα...
Sep 18, 2016 Sharyl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-reads
Now for something completely this clever story, we meet a delightful, super brainy character from apartheid South Africa named Nombeko Mayeki. Hold on, this story is a long ride, where fantastic farce meets grim reality.

The statistical probability that an illiterate in 1970s Soweto will grow up and one day find herself confined in a potato truck with the Swedish king and prime minister is 1 in 45,766, 212,810.
This, according to the calculations of the aforementioned illiterate
May 07, 2014 Elaine rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: readathon
Unfortunately this was quite a disappointing read for me. Whereas I thoroughly enjoyed Jonasson's first book, this one was just absurd and silly and I did not really find it funny. 2.5 stars only for this one.
Jan 17, 2016 Galina rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Кратко обобщение в две думи - пълна тъпня!
Oct 15, 2016 Ram rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, humor
In 1961, Nombeko Mayeki is born a poor black girl in Soweto. She has a good head on her shoulders and can quickly learn anything. In any environment, she manages to outsmart all people around her and find the correct solution, without being cruel, selfish or bad. She does not seek power, and only tries to survive and live a modest life. Through a freaky set of coincidences, good and bad luck, and talent she finds herself in various weird positions that eventually roll out to the need to get rid ...more
While I really enjoyed the first book by this author his second instalment on a similar theme just wasn't that convincing.

I really wanted to like it, but I found that for a book that supposedly had a female protagonist, that protagonist took up less than half of the "screen time", which was just disappointing.

I know I shouldn't compare the two, but having just finished the other right before this one, it just goes to showcase this book's weaknesses. The pace of the story is glacial most of the t
Rebecca Foster
Jonasson’s debut novel, The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared, was an international bestseller and an utter reader’s delight. His second again follows the coincidence-strewn life story of an unlikely protagonist with a specialist skill: here, though, a poverty-stricken South African girl with a head for figures named Nombeko Mayeki replaces the geriatric gentleman with a knack for setting off explosions.

There’s much to enjoy, especially the large cast of amusing
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After a long career as a journalist, media consultant and television producer, Jonas Jonasson decided to start a new life. He wrote a manuscript, he sold all his possessions in Sweden and moved to a small town by Lake Lugano in Switzerland, only a few meters from the Italian border.

The manuscript became a novel. The novel became a phenomenon in Sweden, and now it is about to reach the rest of the
More about Jonas Jonasson...

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“Life, here I come!' he said. And was immediately and fatally run over by a bus.” 17 likes
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