Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Place of Her Own (1962)

A Place of Her Own
Ann Mari Falk (translated from the Swedish by Annabelle MacMillan)
Copyright 1962
English translation 1964 by Harcourt Brace & World Inc.

"Since when did you begin to classify peopl eas 'nice' and 'not so nice'?" Lottie inquired.
"Yesterday," Stina said. "Back home everyone is pleasant."

15-year-old Stina Sandblom is leaving her island home after the death of her parents, and going to the big city, Stockholm, to live with her recently married sister Lottie and her husband Olaf. 

The young couple is welcoming, but their apartment is tiny, Lottie is pregnant, and Stina finds adjusting to her new school difficult.  A quiet person, she is bothered by teasing about her rural accent, and distracted by how hard it is to study in the cramped living quarters. But one girl seems nice, and Stina decides to take a chance  and invite Astrid home for a visit. 

And of course, a romance.  Stina falls for Markus, a studious and nerdy boy she treats with more affection than passion until he helps her solve a major problem - Lottie's newborn and the fraying nerves of his young parents is making study impossible.

Oh, how the baby cried! Olie paced the floor, holding his son in his arms. Finally he would begin to gurgle contentedly and put his fist in his mouth, but the minute he was put back in his basket, the noisy concert began afresh... But now Olie and Lottie had begun to quarrel over the most trivial matters - things they would have laughed at a few months before.

Nice problem novel from Europe.


About the Author
She seems to have written a number of books in various genres – some are clearly children’s picture books, some seem to be murder mysteries (going by the covers), but only one is pretty obviously also a young adult novel, Who Is Erika (1959)


Other editions

1972, Scholastic Book Services