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The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend

3.57  ·  Rating Details ·  14,367 Ratings  ·  3,296 Reviews
Once you let a book into your life, the most unexpected things can happen...

Broken Wheel, Iowa, has never seen anyone like Sara, who traveled all the way from Sweden just to meet her pen pal, Amy. When she arrives, however, she finds that Amy's funeral has just ended. Luckily, the townspeople are happy to look after their bewildered tourist—even if they don't understand he
Paperback, 394 pages
Published January 19th 2016 by Sourcebooks Landmark (first published September 4th 2013)
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Susan Yes, and the paperback I read included 13 questions for discussion. The book has many characters and situations to explore.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Angela M
Although the premise seems a bit odd, stranger things have happened in real life so I just accepted that a young girl from Sweden would travel to a tiny town in Iowa , called Broken Wheel to stay with a woman that she only knew from exchanging letters and books . These letters, at least the ones from from Amy Harris of Broken Wheel to Sara , are interspersed throughout and we learn more about the town and the people who live there as well as about Amy and Sara.

Sara loves books - how can I not l
Jan 22, 2016 Irena rated it really liked it
This book should have come with the big note on its cover that says ''WARNING: SPOILERS INSIDE''.

You see, this book is a book written by a book lover for other booklovers.
And do you know what book lovers like to do? Talk about books. Discuss plot developmets. They often compare one story to another, wondering why the certain character chose one path over the other.


Our main character, Sara, is a true bookworm, so it is no wonder that this book is full of references to other books which often ends
Megan Johnson
Dec 31, 2015 Megan Johnson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs, publisher-sent
What's better than books and a good love story? Let's see...oh yeah, nothing.

Seriously, I'm a sucker when it comes to feel-good love stories, and if you've been following me or this blog for any length of time then you know full and well that books are my absolute weakness. Ever wonder whether I'm at a hopping party on a Friday night? Well don't because I'll go ahead and tell you - I'm curled up with my dog and a blanket on the couch with a good book.

The Readers Of Broken Wheel Recommend was thi
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
There's a lot to love in this novel of Sara, a young, rather plain Swedish bookworm who takes a trip to the small U.S. town of Broken Wheel to visit her older pen pal and fellow book lover, Amy. When Sara arrives, she finds that Amy has died while Sara was en route, but the townspeople urge her to stay in Amy's home anyway and visit with them for the couple of months she had planned.

In many ways the town is as broken as its name:

"Broken Wheel was a complete waste of brick, asphalt, and concrete
Jan 03, 2016 Esil rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley

The Readers of Broken Wheel is ridiculously predictable, superficial, full of improbabilities, at times painfully sentimental and definitely a book that could have used a ruthless editor to shorten it. So let me explain why I gave it 3 stars rather than 2 or less. At its core, the story is an ode to books -- about the love of books and reading -- really, a celebration of obsessive bookishness in a world with a diminishing readership. And for that reason alone, I persevered and didn't toss The Re
Jun 09, 2016 Carmen rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No One
Jen immediately took a photo of Sara sitting in the window with her book.

"Who the hell wants to watch someone reading?" Grace asked from the doorway of her diner.

EXACTLY. Who the hell wants to read a book about someone reading books?

You could spend the exact same time it takes to read this book on Bookstagram or GR and have the same result. It's all about how great books are and the glory of reading. Who wants to read 394 pages of that!?

This book falls into the same category as The Storied Life
Diane Barnes
Mar 31, 2016 Diane Barnes rated it really liked it
There was a TV series in the early 1990's called "Northern Exposure", set in Cicely, Alaska, a small town so off the grid it almost didn't exist. The town was populated by oddballs and eccentrics who used the local bar as a gathering place. Long before Tivo and Netflix entered the picture, I tuned in each week to be a part of their crazy, funny world.

This book is set in Broken Wheel, Iowa, another little town off the grid, populated with oddballs and eccentrics with no place else to go. Along co
Today, in the age of social media and instant communication, letter writing has become antiquated and uncommon. Not that many years ago however it was the norm and many people had ‘pen-pals’, myself included.

This novel is about two women, one young and living in Sweden, one not so young and living in a tiny town in the middle of Iowa cornfields. Bibliophiles both, they become acquainted through books and the love of reading is what makes their relationship work.

When after years of sharing their
This book was absolute rubbish. 394 pages of stupid observations written in a clumsy and somewhat childish language combined with unbelievable characters. It does mention quite a few books that I would love to read, but since it also reveals the ending of most of these novels, the name-dropping just ended up annoying me. What an utter waste of time.
helen the bookowl
Jan 02, 2016 helen the bookowl rated it really liked it
This was such a cute story that moved my book-loving heart! Yes, it is very perfect and partly cheesy, but in this case I didn't mind because the novel was perfect that way.
This story takes place in Broken Wheel, Iowa, and it contains a great love for books. Sara, the main character, is the sweetest girl whose love for books was so easy to relate to. She loves smelling them, looking at them, and of course devouring them over a cup of coffee or tea.
This story also contains a diverse cast of char
Sherwood Smith
Received from NetGalley.

When I was thinking about how to describe this book, the first word to mind was "sweet." But sometimes people see that word as synonymous with saccharine or syrupy.

So maybe sweetly whimsical? Or maybe a sentence is better than a word or two: I think the reader for this book enjoys a gently rambling plot, quirky characters, romance, and above all, a passionate love of books.

It was written by a Swedish author who at the time had never been to America. But from what I could
Feb 21, 2016 Wendy rated it really liked it
Shelves: feb-16
The Readers Of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald is the charming story of friendship, small town romance and so much more. A story that connects two friends over their love of books.
Sara Lindqvist travels from Sweden to meet and spend two months with her pen pal Amy Harris in Broken Wheel, Iowa. Upon her arrival Sara is shocked to learn of Amy's death and she has arrived just in time for the funeral. The townspeople insist that Sara fulfil her intended plans and stay at Amy's house as th
"The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend" is a book built around books and the people who love them. It's about the power of books to build friendships, repair broken hearts, set dreams aloft, and change prejudices. It's a book that had so much promise, but for me ultimately fell short of the perfect "sweet spot" nice and cozy little story.

Sara is a young Swedish woman who is pen pals with elderly Amy of Broken Wheel, Iowa -- a small down-of-it's luck town hit hard by the recession. Despite having
Rebecca Foster
Whatever would lead a European to vacation in Broken Wheel, Iowa, that “complete waste of brick, asphalt and concrete”? For Sara Lindqvist, the answer is books. Over the last two years she’s built up a friendship with Amy Harris of Broken Wheel through pen pal letters and exchanges of books. Now that the bookshop where she worked in Sweden has closed down, she has a bit of time and money to devote to a trip to America. “Reading books isn’t a bad way to live your life, but lately Sara had begun ...more
Tanja Berg
Rating 5* out of 5. This is the best feel-good chick-lit book about books I've ever read. Deeply insightful in regards to the human condition, humorous and filled with books. I've snubbed this type of book for at least a year, I have no idea why, but I'm over that now. I know that a book of this quality is one in a hundred, but I seriously need some variation to my thriller-horror-zombie-blood-and-gore preference.

Sara from Sweden is visting the truly godforsaken Iowa town Broken Wheels. She arri
Feb 09, 2016 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After losing her job as a bookseller, Swede Sara Lindqvist, makes the fateful decision to travel across the Atlantic to visit her American pen pal, Amy Harris. What she finds though on her arrival is much more than she bargained for. Firstly the romantic thoughts of relaxing and reading with her friend are put on hold after the shock news that Amy has recently passed away and secondly Broken Wheel is a shadow of it's former self.

Sara is shocked by what she finds and is totally overwhelmed by the
Morana Mazor
Feb 21, 2016 Morana Mazor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Čitateljica u potrazi za sretnim završetkom” Katarina Bivald, Profil

Ovo je jako lijepa priča koja se lako i sa zanimanjem čita; jedna od onih kakve bi trebali češće čitati jer nas, makar na kratko vrijeme, udaljuju od svakodnevice i problema, a to nam, zasigurno svima ponekad treba.

Ova knjiga posebno će zagrijati srca pasioniranim čitateljima jer će se prepoznati u mnogim citatima, razmišljanjima glavne junakinje; također će uživati i u atmosferi budući da se veliki dio radnje odvija upravi u
Dec 15, 2015 Jules rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
This was an enjoyable read that I think will be appreciated by those who love to read lots of books.

I loved the idea of penpals, as I had lots of penpals during my teenage years. The focus on the way books can have an impact on the lives of the readers was also a great one. Broken Wheel was a fun town with some quirky characters, and I loved the whole opening up of the bookshop.

However, the reason I give this 3 stars instead of 4 or 5 is because I found the story a little too light and predictab
Book Riot Community
I kept putting this one off because the premise didn’t really grab me, but holy cats, I wish I hadn’t! This book about a young woman from Sweden who goes to Iowa to meet her bookish penpal (an old woman who we quickly learn has died) just sucked me right into its strange little world. Such a glorious, quaint, funny story. Probably will end up buying a print copy because I keep wanting to underline the beautiful little statements peppered throughout this one.

-Amanda Kay Oaks

from The Best Books W
☼♄Jülie 
Sep 06, 2016 ☼♄Jülie  rated it really liked it

It took me a little bit to get into this story to begin with but once I did I settled right in and was fully engaged for the entire read.

A little bit quirky and a bit sentimental, the story tells of a little town called Broken Wheel, Iowa, which is suffering from the effects of a lack of industry to keep it afloat. Many of its once thriving shops have closed and remain empty, and there is a very real risk that the town will die out as businesses go broke and people move out to find work elsewher
Jul 30, 2016 Maria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Para quem gosta de livros apenas o título da obra de Katarina Bivald e a capa fantástica vendem. Mas A Livraria dos Finais Felizes, não se fica apenas por estes pormenores, e ainda bem! Desde que o recebi, já há alguns meses, que me senti tentada a pegar nele. Mas gosto sempre de ter um bom livro (e tinha a certeza de que este era bom), por ler na minha estante, para aqueles momentos em que lemos alguns livros menos bons, ou então temos mais tempo disponível para o poder apreciar melhor.

Com a c
I thought perhaps this would be more like a Fannie Flagg novel (of which I adore), or maybe along the lines of a quirky Billie Letts novel, such as - The Honk and Holler Opening Soon. Or even something like The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society meets Steel Magnolias.

But no. Not even close......

Too dry, too dull, too crass, too skittish. And not very believable, either. Then again, the translation was wonky. Entire words were missing from standardized phrases. Maybe some warmth and c
Nov 27, 2015 Dorie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I was looking for something “short and sweet” as a break from some heavier literature that I had been struggling to finish. I wanted instant gratification, like piece of good chocolate. Being a bibliophile I have a hard time passing up books about bookshops, libraries, basically anything related to books.

“The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend” fit the bill perfectly. The initial premise of the book is about a young woman from Sweden, Sara Lindquist,who travels to a small town in Iowa to visit Am
Jan 19, 2016 Maria rated it really liked it
It all starts with letters and books. Of course something magical was bound to happen! But first things first...
"(...) but how fun is it to read a fantastic book if you can't tell others about it, talk about it, and quote from it constantly?"

Someone once said that books recommend people. If you find someone reading your favourite novel, it's like the book is telling you that you must befriend the person reading it immediately. While I appreciate the thought, I find that to be quite a stretch. Bu
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

The premise of The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald is irresistible to any book lover.

When Sara Lindqvist arrives in Broken Wheel, Iowa from Sweden in response to an invitation from her elderly penpal and fellow book lover, Amy, she is upset to learn that her host has passed away. The sensible thing would be to return home, but the townspeople are determined to honour Amy's commitment and insist that Sara remain.
Looking to repay the towns' kindness for the remainder of her s
Fluff. The best kind of fluff, which, as I figured out in the last few months, for me means not only a book which doesn't require much thought and which can be read half asleep, but something that doesn't provoke any strong feelings, and relaxing because of that. Not actively liked or disliked: it's just there. The plot had as much potential to irritate me as did The Red Notebook, but I think what makes the difference is a slightly more astringent, perhaps even subtly saracstic, style and less p ...more
Tiff at Mostly YA Lit
Feb 09, 2016 Tiff at Mostly YA Lit rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: chick lit readers, women's fiction lovers, book lovers
Review and Q&A originally posted at Mostly YA Lit:

The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald is a book that begs you and dares you to not love books. It is, in fact, a book about love: love of books and love of people, and how the two can intertwine to create and change the world we live in.

Sara is a 24 year old bookshop employee who has anepistolaryfriendshipwith Amy, an older book-loving lady who lives in Broken Wheel, Iowa. After years of sending each other books and learni
Oct 12, 2016 Maria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Um livro muito simpático e que me deu bastante prazer em ler. Fala sobre algo que me é querido, ou seja, a paixão por livros, por ler, por partilhar as leituras e os livros. E depois temos a parte do romance, a parte fofinha, inocente, para quem gosta de finais felizes. Recomento a quem gosta de livros doces e que fazem sonhar
♥ Sandi
Feb 14, 2016 ♥ Sandi rated it liked it
Shelves: 1-have
Amy Harris 56, of Broken Wheel Iowa and Sara Lindvist 28, of Sweden are pen pals. Their common interest is books. Amy conveniences Sara to visit her. On the day Sara arrives, on a 60 day visa, the problems begin. It is the same day as Amy's funeral. Knowing no one, Sara is set up in Amy's house and in time she decides to stay since there is nothing for her at home in Sweden - no job, no apartment, no boyfriend. She begins to meet the towns people - all fairly quirky. She also knows she needs ...more
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
"This one's on me."

How many times would Sara hear that? She couldn't keep taking things for free and especially the rent.

Sara came to Broken Wheel, Iowa, from Sweden to meet her pen pal, Amy, but what she found when she arrived wasn't what she was expecting.

She didn't find Amy but a town of friendly folks who loved Amy and who loved giving Sara things for free. They also offered Amy's house to Sara since Amy was no longer in Broken Wheel.

Sara was only there for two months on a visiting visa, but
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Katarina Bivald grew up working part-time in a bookshop. Today she lives outside of Stockholm, Sweden, with her sister and as many bookshelves she can get by her. She'scurrently trying to persuade her sister that having a shelf for winter jackets and shoes is completely unneccessary. There should be enough space for a book shelf or two instead. Limited success so far. Apparantly, her sister is ...more
More about Katarina Bivald...

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“For as long as she could remember, she had thought that autumn air went well with books, that the two both somehow belonged with blankets, comfortable armchairs, and big cups of coffee or tea.” 30 likes
“People were strange like that. They could be completely uninterested in you, but the moment you picked up a book, you were the one being rude.” 22 likes
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