In the 1960s, Per Anders Fogelström published a series of books entitled 'City of My Dreams' telling the story of Stockholm, from a worker's perspective. They are dearly loved classics in Swedish literature and a great example of history brought 'down' from royalties and wars to a more humane perspective.
Ekman's series 'The Women and the Town' was published a decade later and completes Fogelströms stories by adding a female perspective to the new social history aspect.
Ekman certainly paved the way for brilliant Sandberg's books, adding focus on cooking, home management, family relations and a frequent wish for another, freer life.
Add to that Ekman's considerable literary skills, and you will see that although a bit old, these first two books are a must-read.