Anxious People

Anxious People

by

Fredrik Backman

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Anxious People can help.
Jack’s sister and Jim’s daughter is seven years older than Jack. She never appears in person in the novel, as she’s addicted to heroin and lives almost a 24-hour drive away from the small town where Jack and Jim live. The narrator states that it’s impossible to tell when her substance abuse began, but since she became addicted, she’s stopped coming home—though she semi-regularly asks Jack for money to fly home, she never actually comes. Several years before the novel begins, Jack liquidated his savings to send her to rehab, but she didn’t complete the program, and Jack never got his money back. He stopped chasing her after this, while Jim continues to hope that his daughter will one day come home. Jim is motivated to help the robber in part because she resembles his daughter, and Jim’s wife insisted that her family members help “the ones they can.”

Jack’s Sister Quotes in Anxious People

The Anxious People quotes below are all either spoken by Jack’s Sister or refer to Jack’s Sister. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Parenting and Fear Theme Icon
).
Chapter 65 Quotes

“What did you need the money from the bank robbery for?”

The desperation on her face revealed the chaos in her heart as she said: “To pay the rent. I needed six thousand five hundred. My husband’s lawyer was threatening to take the girls away from me if I didn’t have anywhere to live.”

Jim held onto the handrail to stop himself collapsing as his heart broke. Empathy is like vertigo. Six thousand five hundred, because she thought she’d lose her children otherwise. Her children.

“There are rules, legislation, no one can just take your children away from you simply because…,” he began, then thought better of it and said: “But now they can…now you’ve held up a bank and…” His voice almost gave out as he whispered: “You poor child, what have you got yourself mixed up in?”

Page Number: 294
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Anxious People LitChart as a printable PDF.
Anxious People PDF

Jack’s Sister Character Timeline in Anxious People

The timeline below shows where the character Jack’s Sister appears in Anxious People. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 13
Mental Health and Connection Theme Icon
Jim also has a picture of Jack’s older sister on his desk, but she never comes home for Christmas. This is the biggest difference... (full context)
Chapter 46
Parenting and Fear Theme Icon
Marriage, Conflict, and Communication Theme Icon
Assumptions  Theme Icon
...she died anyway, he promised his mom he’d take care of Jim. He called his sister, a heroin addict, to tell her about the funeral and send her money. She still... (full context)
Parenting and Fear Theme Icon
Mental Health and Connection Theme Icon
Jack and Jim have been on their own since then. They still send Jack’s sister money when she asks. They both wonder what kind of police officer can’t help their... (full context)
Chapter 65
Parenting and Fear Theme Icon
Assumptions  Theme Icon
When the bank robber opens the door, her hair is the same color as Jim’s daughter ’s. They both notice that neither of them has removed their wedding rings. The robber... (full context)
Mental Health and Connection Theme Icon
The Modern World Theme Icon
Assumptions  Theme Icon
...to give up now, and the pistol’s not real. Jim, failing to see anyone but his daughter in the robber’s face, says that the robber will still end up in prison. He... (full context)
Chapter 72
Parenting and Fear Theme Icon
Mental Health and Connection Theme Icon
The Modern World Theme Icon
Assumptions  Theme Icon
Jack asks if Jim wants coffee: he thought they could drive to see his sister. It’ll be her birthday soon, and maybe she’d like to come home. They spend the... (full context)