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Upon learning that her beloved grandmother has fallen ill, Rebecka makes the hasty decision to pack her bags and travel to the south of Sweden. Her grandmother holds a special place in her heart and is the closest relative she has, especially since her falling out with her mother many years earlier.

Rebecka quickly realizes that something is amiss when she arrives at her grandmother’s cottage. The refrigerator which used to be filled to the brim is nearly empty, and the garden is lacking the usual bloom. Instead, the floor is covered in a layer of dust and the usually neat living room is filled with boxes. The guilt gnaws at Rebecka when she realizes that her grandmother has been in need of help for a long time, without receiving it. The least Rebecka can do is clean the place, but her mission is interrupted when she finds an old diary, letters and a photograph of a man in a book cabinet.

Anna, Rebecka’s grandmother, lies weak and thin in a hospital bed. The sterile lights make her seem even smaller than usual, and Rebecka can almost see her life fading away. During a visit, Rebecca cannot help but ask about the photograph. Anna hesitates, but eventually admits that she knew the man, Luca, when she was young. How come you’ve never spoken about him? Because I did something terrible.

Seeking answers, Rebecka begins reading the diary and the letters. A tale of love and loss during the Second World War unfolds, detailing the story of young Anna and Luca on a mission to smuggle Danish Jews across the strait. What danger awaited the pair, and what dark secret has Anna been hiding all her life?

In Frida Skybäck’s third feel-good novel, she weaves a heartfelt tale over two parallel timelines, which explores the effects that wounds from the past have on us in the present and the very human need for reconciliation. A grandeur story that captures the very essence of sacrifice and love.

Extra Materials

Tajemství zamčené knihovny-7318 Czech Republic, Dobrovsky
Skybäck-Dagbogens-hemmelighed Denmark, Gyldendal / Cicero
Skärmavbild 2024-04-17 kl. 12.52.28 Finland, WSOY
das-geheimnis-des-buecherschranks_9783458681779_cover Germany, Suhrkamp / Insel
9788205560635_omslag_DagbokensHemmelighet-POK.indd Norway, Gyldendal

Reviews

“A wonderfully rich story with all the ingredients needed to create great feelgood!”
Expressen Söndag, 4/5 Stars (SE)

“The Book Cabinet’s Secret is an intense, eventful and warm story about love, fate and courage. The two parallel stories are skillfully weaved together and makes up a well written feelgood novel worth reading.”
BTJ (SE)

“With pure instinct and perception, the author illustrates characters, atmospheres, and emotions that are spot on. The Book Cabinet’s Secret excels in the art of combining escapism with being down-to-earth and does not shy away from portraying despair as well as breathtaking love set both during the Second World War and today. With this book, Frida Skybäck shows that she is our uncrowned queen of feelgood.”
Johanna Wistedt, Modernista (SE)

Paloma Agency is a boutique literary agency that represents Scandinavian writers at home and in the world.

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