Abbreviations #110: Anxious People, Untamed + Big Friendship

November 19, 2020

Anxious Peopl
e is the third Fredrik Backman novel I’ve read, and it has fully cemented him as an author whose work I enjoy. This novel has a premise that’s pretty out there: a would-be bank robber ends up holding a group of people attending an apartment viewing hostage. But this story is about more than just this singular encounter. It’s actually the story of each individual we meet, including their lives prior to and after the incident that ties them all together. Like the previous Backman novels I’ve read, Anxious People is less about the actual plot and more about the characters; this really works for me as a character-driven reader. Backman has a knack for capturing human complexity in his work. He writes nuanced personalities that transform from mere character caricatures (which is where they tend to begin) into individuals that feel real. Throw in his usual ability to organically weave in themes like mortality, adulthood and relationships and a dash of funny and charming bits to break up the tension, and it all really came together well by the end. Admittedly, Anxious People isn’t the easiest read (what with the unlikable characters, a nonlinear narrative and difficult content including suicide, depression, addiction, death of loved ones, violence, etc). But Backman’s work continues to impress me with its quality, cleverness and thoughtfulness, and I can’t wait to read more of his novels. (I also want to give a shoutout to the translator and the audiobook narrator for their part in my experience of this novel!)

Anxious People was released on September 8, 2020 by Atria Books.
I received an advanced listening copy (ALC) through Libro.FM.

I rarely ever pick up non-fiction by individuals I’m unfamiliar with, and it was only because of my family book club (my sisters and my cousin) that I ended up reading Untamed. In this collection of short stories pulled from her own life experiences, Glennon Doyle writes about how many women tend to be brought up to be a certain way versus listening to your own natural guiding instincts. Part memoir, part self-help, Untamed ended up being a quick, interesting read. My biggest takeaway from this book, as well as the thing I appreciated the most about it, was that Doyle really managed to identify and put into words a variety of feelings and thoughts that I’ve had myself. It also made for a great discussion when we met up to chat about the book, as we each latched on to different aspects of what Doyle shared. While I did feel like it wasn’t as organized or fluid as I would have liked, I do think Untamed succeeded in detailing its main argument. It was enjoyable, and I appreciated the reading experience overall.

Untamed was released on March 10, 2020 by Dial Press.

I’m not entirely certain what I was expecting from Big Friendship, but it definitely wasn’t what it ended up being – and that’s not a bad thing! Big Friendship is co-written by two best friends Ann Friedman and Aminatou Sow (who run the podcast Call Your Girlfriend, which I was unfamiliar with prior to the book), and it’s about the evolution of friendship… specifically theirs. My expectations were that this was a book about friendship, especially the long-distance variety, so it caught me off guard to discover that the bulk of this novel is actually about each woman’s story and their actual friendship history and growth (which does include long-distance friendship). While I didn’t necessarily end up enjoying the reading experience as much as I’d hoped to, I did still appreciate the insights on friendship (especially in terms of growth and evolution). (P.S. The audiobook was a solid listen, as it’s narrated by the pair and a few guests that they invite/consult at different points in the novel.)

Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close was released on July 14, 2020 by Simon & Schuster.


  1. I have all three of these books on my library list! I especially love the cover of Untamed.



    The internet today is full of SCAM ADS, mostly in comments of various sites and blogs. A large number of individuals have been victims of scam and lost a lot of money to SCAMMERS. Most of the common scam you can see
    ❌LOTTERY SCAM. ❌HACKING SCAM. and lost more......

    ✳️The big Question is “Can someone Recover their money lost to Internet Scam⁉️
    I will say yes, and will tell you how.

    The only way to Recovery your is to hire a Hacker who will help you take back your money from this Scammers and today is your lucky day, you just met the guys perfect for the job.

    We are PYTHONAX, A group of skilled Hackers and have dedicated our time to help individuals get back thier money from INTERNET SCAMMERS. There is a research was carried one to calculate the amount of money lost through Scam, and it was confirmed that more than USD $3billion annually.

    We first of all study the scammer brought to us by hacking the person device(phone or computer) to get information of How, Where, this person keeps money he/she as defrauded people of ( so many of this scammers don’t actually save the money in banks, they mostly stack the money in a Bitcoin wallet, that way it is safe and untraceable to authorities) and we work on a strategy to get back the money and give it back to whom they have defrauded.

    Contacting us is simple, just give us a message through the email below.

    If you a victim of internet scam or you know someone who is, make contact to us immediately. You are 💯 % safe to contact us, our email is very secure.

    We also provide Legit Hacking Services such as-:
    🔸Phone Hacking/Cloning
    🔸Email Hacking & Password Recovery
    🔸Social Media Hacking & Passowrd Recovery
    🔸Deleted Files Recovery 🔸Mobil Tracking
    🔸Virus detection & Elimination. e.t.c


    2020 © All Right Reserved.


Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

Latest Instagrams

© Alexa Loves Books. Design by FCD.