Netflix’s Swedish thriller A Nearly Normal Family is based on a bestseller

By Louie Fecou
Published: November 24, 2023 (Last updated: December 3, 2023)
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What is A Nearly Normal Family based on?
A Nearly Normal Family | Image via Netflix

The 2023 Swedish Netflix limited series A Nearly Normal Family tells the harrowing story of a 19-year-old girl who is accused of murdering her lover. The disturbing event leads to far-reaching consequences for her family, especially her parents, a priest and a lawyer, who appear to have secrets of their own. As their lives start to unravel, they are forced to re-evaluate their own relationships with each other. It has been highly anticipated, and one of the reasons for the hype is due to the nature of the source material, the book of the same name by M.T. Edvardsson.

The series was directed by Per Hanefjord, the screenplay was by Anna Platt and Hans Jornlind, and the series stars Lo Kauppi, Bjorn Bengtsson, and Alexandra Karlsson Tyrefors.

What is A Nearly Normal Family based on?

A Nearly Normal Family is based on the bestselling book of the same name by M.T. Edvardsson, and the success of the novel has created a bit of a buzz for fans eager to see how the material adapts to the screen.

There has been a long line of this kind of story being adapted for TV and film. Think of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Snowman, and The Killing to give you the tone of this particular production. The book has been given space to breathe with this project, as the series has six episodes to explore the characters and the world they live in. This should help viewers to become immersed in the plot and the players, and the runtime will certainly provide the space needed to flesh things out in a satisfying way, avoiding the restrictive length of a movie.

Mattias Edvardsson, author of A Nearly Normal Family


Is A Nearly Normal Family a true story?

No, A Nearly Normal Family is not a true story — it is based on a work of fiction by author and teacher M. T. Edvardsson.

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Hailing from Trelleborg, Sweden, Edvardsson has become a bestselling author of several children’s books and at least half a dozen mystery fiction novels. A Nearly Normal Family was the writer’s debut novel and received some great reviews on its release. Since then he has become known for his relatable characters and compelling storytelling, being declared the master of “domestic noir”, and his works have now been published in more than thirty countries around the world.

What happens in A Nearly Normal Family?

The story of A Nearly Normal Family follows the Sandells, a family that lives a quiet life in an affluent suburb. Ulrika is a successful and motivated lawyer, while Adam is a priest. Their daughter, Stella, works in a bakery, but their lives are turned upside down when Stella is charged with the murder of the man she’s been seeing.

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Stella is taken into custody, and her parents are doing everything they can to help their daughter, and are prepared to go to any lengths to keep her safe. The book, and the series, explores the nature of relationships, and asks the question: How much do we ever really know about each other?

The official premise courtesy of IMDb is as follows:

The world of a seemingly perfect family shatters when a shocking murder proves that they’re willing to make desperate moves to protect one another.

RELATED: A Nearly Normal Family Season 1 Ending Explained

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