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Book Club: A World Gone Mad – The Wartime Diaries of Astrid Lindgren

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Book Club: A World Gone Mad – The Wartime Diaries of Astrid Lindgren
A statue of Astrid Lindgren in Djurgården, Stockholm. File photo: Fredrik Sandberg/SCANPIX/TT
06:59 CET+01:00
Each month, The Local Sweden’s Book Club reads a different book with a Swedish link. In April, we’re reading A World Gone Mad: The Diaries of Astrid Lindgren 1939-45, written before the children’s author’s rise to fame.

Many of us know and love Lindgren as the author of the Pippi Longstocking books, Ronia the Robber's Daughter, and so many more. But in 1939, she was an unpublished aspiring author, a wife and mother; an ordinary 32-year-old in Stockholm when war broke out. 

"Oh! War broke out today. Nobody could believe it," begins the diary she kept throughout the Second World War.

Her writing depicts what life was like for everyday citizens as she details her personal struggles, dealing with parenthood and financial difficulties, alongside her reflections on good, evil, and war.

These diaries have only recently been translated into English by Sarah Death, who also translated some of Lindgren's children's books. We'll be speaking to Sarah Death later this month so if you've got questions you'd like us to ask her, get in touch.

Join The Local Sweden's Book Club on Facebook and sign up to our newsletter to receive updates and highlights from the group, and to have your say in what we read next. And feel free to get in touch by email (Members of The Local can log in to comment below) if you have book suggestions, opinions on this month's book, or any other ideas for the Book Club.


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