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Swede Dreams (Students Across the Seven Seas)

3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  478 ratings  ·  36 reviews
Swede escape! Calista Swanson has begun her study abroad semester in Stockholm, Sweden, and she couldn’t be happier! There’s finally some distance between her and the constant piano-playing of her annoying sister Suzanne. Calista and Suzanne are twins, but the only thing they have in common is their birth date. Suzanne is a focused and gifted pianist, but a social dud. Cal ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published February 15th 2007 by Speak (first published February 1st 2007)
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Sweden! While it still exasperates me that most of this series is set in Europe, I'm pleased that some of them take place in countries I know so little about.

Calista has gone to Sweden for two reasons: to get a break from his perfect, talented twin, Suzanne, and to be closer to her Swedish boyfriend, Jonas. She's studied some Swedish on her own (note: when she moans about how perfect Suzanne is and how she doesn't have a talent of her own, nobody stops to point out that she speaks four languages
Swede Dreams is quite different from the other sass books in term of cultural references. Usually I find a lot of stereotypes in sass books. But Swede Dreams kind of unravel the other side of Sweden that I never knew before.That's a good thing. Though sometimes it feels overwhelming. Calista, the main character is pretty enthusiastic to learn everything about Sweden. So there's a lot of interesting information about places and cultural activities in this book which makes this book looks like a g ...more
Jul 10, 2014 Ellie rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: No one

The bits about Swedish culture and history were good, particularly the Viking history. However, the characters were cardboard cut-outs. They had no depth or individuality and instead just conformed to stereotypes.

I would not recommend this book.

I did enjoy one of the other books in this series though (it's by a different author) - When Irish Guys are smiling.
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Jennifer Rummel for

Sweden means two things for Calista: getting away from her annoyingly talented twin sister, and being reunited with her boyfriend.

But Sweden isn't at all what Cal expects. For one thing, she can't get a hold of her boyfriend. She's also living with a host family, taking all of her courses in Swedish, and needs to learn the language pronto!

As the semester unfolds, Cal begins to notice things about herself that she'd like to change when she gets ba
I read this book and LOVED it! I live in the area where Eva lives (like I live on the same street as her) and after I read the book I went to talk to her where she works (the book store) and talked to her! She is SUPER nice! I am also Sweedish so we talked about things about the sweedish culture then about the book! I love her and her book!!!
I don't know wether i like this book or not but i probably enjoyed this if i read it in one day,
I like the setting and how the characters talk about the culture in Sweden
I think the characters need to be described more and i thought Lena was only Ok in english but she sounds fluent to me
––––•(-•The Insomniac Book Hoarder•-
I have always been fond of reading S.A.S.S. Books, due to the simple fact that they combine culture/ history and a little bit of romance in just the right amount of degree..

I love realistic fiction, and more of it when it transports you to a place as exotic and historically rich as Sweden.


Calista (Cal) was initially drawn to studying abroad in Sweden because of her exchange student boyfriend, Jonas. She wanted to distance herself a bit more frorm her twin sister's talented shadow
Arshia Zehra
Swede Dreams is a really fantastic book with loads of Swedish culture!..I really liked this book because it gave me a lot of insight into Sweden and I also am starting to perceive Swedish as a delightful language..!..I really liked the plot and Hakan was really an amazing guy!....I also learnt that hurdles and problems are the things that make a person really strong as in the case of Calista! Also that we should never feel inferior because of a person in our lives who has a great talent instead ...more
Meen Singson
It bore me to death. All my creative juices were sucked out from the deepest part of my brain and I just want to throw it for its never-ending no-thrill plot. ugh
I feel as if this S.A.S.S book was more informative about its country more so than the other books in the series. After reading this book, I feel the urge to visit Sweden one day. It was chock-full of history, especially viking history, culture, and language. I could relate to Calista's excitement when she saw the museum exhibits, gardens, and other tourist attractions. I sympathized with her over her heartache, doubt, and confusion. My eyes felt a little teary at the end of the book when she ha ...more
Beth Rodgers
Apelqvist gave Sweden an intoxicating quality that made me envious of the main character's study abroad there. I have never had the desire to go to Sweden until reading this book. Even though there were not tons of descriptions of museums and such there, the ones that did exist within the book were very well-written and very interesting. I immediately told my husband that I want to visit Sweden. After reading another of the series, When Irish Guys are Smiling by Suzanne Supplee, I said I wanted ...more
Another one of these books i really liked this one also this one is about a girl who goes to sweden to get away from her twin sister, and family and to find out about herself. WHile in sweden she changes she finds out shes been dating the people for the wrong reasons and whike un sweden meets a guy she likes for her own reasons, and descovers she wants the friendships she had with her sister again so its about finding family.
Swede Dreams is my favorite book I have read in the S.A.S.S Series since Girl Overboard. The main character is the perfect balance of likability, but still having relatable problems. The plot is fun and the Swedish culture feels very well represented and I enjoyed the fact that the language was a big part of the story. Overall 4/5 stars; I would read more by this author.
When I started this Spain or Shine was my favorite from this series now it has competition.
Calista is great. Her hunger to learn, her love of languages and history, and her friendly nature are very endearing.
The supporting cast is awesome, especially Britta and Bengt.
The love interest is nice and his relationship with Cali is super cute.
I enjoyed learning more about Swedish culture, about which I knew very little. Any type of book that involves travel and a new culture is fascinating to me. I did not rate this book as highly as the others I have read in the S.A.S.S. series because I simply was not as engrossed in the story or characters.
Calista can't wait to get to Sweden to see her exchange student boyfriend and escape her "perfect" twin sister Suzanne. Only, when Calista gets to Stockholm, Jarod won't return her calls. Calista must find her own way and new friends as she learns Swedish in her semester abroad.
This book was good, I read it in a day. I learned a lot about Sweden, and thought the main character was good. The Viking part was a little confusing at times, I didn't want a history lesson in my pleasure reading! Overall, it was definitely worth three stars...
This was my 11 yr old's book. It's about a high school girl who does a study abroad semester in Stockholm, Sweden. Read it mainly to do the whole nostalgia thing - reliving my teen & early college years in Scandinavia. It certainly met those needs.
Brittany Solarz
An extremely simple and easy read, it allowed my brain to recuperate a little from all the study I've been doing!
Overall, it wasn't exactly thrilling... or even exciting but nevertheless, I finished it because it was on my shelf...
Michelle Arrow
I read this a while ago but I can tell you this, I loved it! I couldn't wait to read the SASS "winter" book because I wanna see some winter skiing love! And of course, Calista got hers! I love SASS books!
I love all S.A.S.S books and i'm planning to read 'em all. ;)
This is another good book! I just hated it that she had to leave when they were just getting to know each other.
This girl is from Wisconsin and went to Sweeden to study abroad. I loved the facts about the country, but most of all how the character grew and learned to make her own decisons.
Soobie's heartbroken
Silly reading. The part where the author tells about Sweden and its culture is interesting but the rest is standard Young-chick-lit.
OMG!!! I absolutely LOVE this series and everything that it has to offer for a girl like me who loves to travel!!!

Jun 09, 2007 Gabby added it
Recommends it for: this is a book to read if you are sitting on an airplane with nothing to do
If you wanna read this series i reccomend starting with this book!!!! It gives you a clear idea of the series!!
Ashley Joachim
sooo far this book iz bout a gurl who wants to go to sweden and ee her boyfriend named jonas and thats it soo far
Swede Dreams is a excellent book that has alot of meaning and is very interesting.
Cute story, I especially loved learning more about Swedish culture. :)
Debbie Romero
Sep 03, 2012 Debbie Romero is currently reading it
this book is good and i learnd some swedish in it i would give it 5 stars.
I don't really remember what happened in this one, skating though
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Eva Apelqvist grew up in Stockholm, Sweden. She came to the United States as an exchange student her senior year in high school, and met her future husband three days before going home to Sweden. Eva loves the English language and its many possibilities. She enjoys seeing new places, eating new things, trying new sports and meeting new people. She lives in northern Wisconsin with her husband, thei ...more
More about Eva Apelqvist...

Other Books in the Series

Students Across the Seven Seas (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Westminster Abby
  • Getting the Boot
  • Spain or Shine
  • Pardon My French
  • The Sound of Munich
  • Heart and Salsa
  • Now and Zen
  • Girl Overboard
  • The Finnish Line
  • When Irish Guys Are Smiling
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