Swedish journalist Jonas Jonasson’s second novel, The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden, hurtles along with all the energy, pace and improbability of his first, The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared. Jonasson doesn’t try anything different here, which is perhaps understandable given his debut’s extraordinary sale of eight million copies and the subsequent film deal.
His central character, a young girl from Soweto called Nombeko Mayeki, is entirely dissimilar to the perambulating centenarian of his first book. Yet there is more than an air of familiarity to the harebrained plot, which sprawls across various continents and several decades. Nombeko has the same unlikely close encounters