Henning Mankell described The Serious Game as one of Sweden's lost classics. 'Söderberg wrote a contemporary novel. He wants the reader to look upon that time and to understand that love is not a secluded island, it is always affected by the 'big' world; by society; politics, disasters and scandals. Arvid, an educated and ambitious young man, meets Lydia, the daughter of a landscape painter; it is summer, they are young, and they fall in love. Lydia, however, has other suitors, and Arvid is frightened of being tied to her, afraid of his emotions. Instead, they part and both conduct marriages of convenience. Years later, trapped inside loveless marriages, the two struggle to rekindle the passion and promise of their early relationship, but with bitter and tragic results. A work of tremendous insight, tenderness and gentle irony.