Book Review: A Nearly Normal Family

Hello everyone. Happy Tuesday. Today, I’m posting a book review from an ARC read via NetGalley.

A Nearly Normal Family by M T Edvardsson

1 Star

Thanks to NetGalley and Pan Macmillan for this Advanced Review Copy.

I had looked forward to reading this book, given that I love a good murder mystery. Sad to say, it just didn't deliver.

The story is translated from Swedish and focuses on family relationships. It starts from the father's point of view, and I found him difficult to connect with. He wasn't a sympathetic or dynamic character at all. Even when the narrative moved on to the other characters, I didn't find myself gelling with any of them. Which meant, of course, that I didn't care what happened to them.

Furthermore, the tale is a long one with a lot of jumping backward and forward, sometimes clumsily. The formatting on the ARC is messy, interrupting the reading constantly. Add to that the many typos, and all in all, this book frustrated rather than thrilled. Consequently, this was a book I struggled to finish.

This read isn't my cup of tea, although the book has a great premise, and the idea of experiencing your daughter--an only child--getting charged with murder and appearing in court is one that had me gripped and full of anticipation.


NOTE ON RATINGS: I consider a 3-star rating a positive review. Picky about which books I give 5 stars to, I reserve this highest rating for the stories I find stunning and which moved me.


4 STARS: I WOULD PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER — Go read this book.

3 STARS: IT WAS GOOD! — An okay read. Didn’t love it. Didn’t hate it. 

2 STARS: I MAY HAVE LIKED A FEW THINGS —Lacking in some areas: writing, characterisation, and/or problematic plot lines. 

1 STAR: NOT MY CUP OF TEA —Lots of issues with this book.


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8 Comments on “Book Review: A Nearly Normal Family

  1. Jan, that heartens me so much to hear I managed to help so much. Thank you. I believe that unless you can be honest, there’s not much point reviewing, and I always try to be constructive in any feedback.

  2. Thank you for your honesty, Harmony! It was because of your honesty in your review of “Flowers and Stone” several years ago that I pulled down and revised it. And the proof is in the pudding. It was chosen as the 2018 Book of the Year by RRBC members! So, THANK YOU!!!

  3. It is too bad the premise didn’t hold up. In this day and age, poor formatting and typos for an Indie is not excusable. Thanks for your honest review, Harmony.

  4. That’s too bad. It’s sad when any book is a letdown, but especially when it’s one you look forward to. Maybe many of the flaws are related to the translation and the original Swedish is better. Fingers crossed that’s the case.

    • Fingers crossed. The one I’m reading now is shaping up to be a four or five star, thank goodness. I’ve had a run of poor reads via Netgalley just lately. Thanks, Staci 🙂

  5. I applaud you for sticking with it despite the book’s many faults, Harmony. I would have probably given it a DNF after so many chapters. I wonder if all the typos and formatting issues had to deal with the translation from Swedish.

    • I wondered the same thing, Mae. I nearly DNF’d it but had already done that with a previous book. I hate doing too many DNFs. Happily, the one I’m reading now is captivating. Thanks for stopping by 🙂