Beartown by Fredrik Backman

Beartown

byFredrik Backman

Kobo ebook | April 25, 2017

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about

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove returns with a dazzling, profound novel about a small town with a big dream—and the price required to make it come true.

People say Beartown is finished. A tiny community nestled deep in the forest, it is slowly losing ground to the ever encroaching trees. But down by the lake stands an old ice rink, built generations ago by the working men who founded this town. And in that ice rink is the reason people in Beartown believe tomorrow will be better than today. Their junior ice hockey team is about to compete in the national semi-finals, and they actually have a shot at winning. All the hopes and dreams of this place now rest on the shoulders of a handful of teenage boys.

Being responsible for the hopes of an entire town is a heavy burden, and the semi-final match is the catalyst for a violent act that will leave a young girl traumatized and a town in turmoil. Accusations are made and, like ripples on a pond, they travel through all of Beartown, leaving no resident unaffected.

Beartown explores the hopes that bring a small community together, the secrets that tear it apart, and the courage it takes for an individual to go against the grain. In this story of a small forest town, Fredrik Backman has found the entire world.

Title:BeartownFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:April 25, 2017Publisher:Simon & SchusterLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1501163116

ISBN - 13:9781501163111

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from The most important social issues of our generation in a story about small-town hockey Backman carefully encases the most important social issues of our generation in a passionate, funny and thoughtful story about small-town hockey. Beartown should be a mandatory read across high schools in order to help shape a generation of deliberate thinkers and compassionate individuals. This is one of the most important books that I have read in many years and I believe that it carefully brings to light issues in society that we are often more comfortable hiding under the rug. Beartown is a story about a small town's hockey team - but more than that a small towns dream. The local hockey team is set to play in the semi-final match and has the full support of everyone in the town. The story jumps from the perspectives of players, coaches and citizens of Beartown as a way to familiarize the reader with the deeper set obstacles that face the town - obstacles which are a reflection of society as a whole. Without giving away more than one would wish to know, I will say this: This book has the power to influence the way you think and question the way things are, all the while being entertaining, funny and quick-witted. A must read.
Date published: 2019-03-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read I really enjoyed this book. Was insightful and well written.
Date published: 2019-03-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyed It! I picked up this book after reading so many great reviews online. I was not disappointed. The first half is very hockey-heavy, but even as a non-sports fan I had a hard time putting it down. I am excited to pick up Us Against You as I loved the characters and want to see where he takes them next.
Date published: 2019-02-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Insightful I loved this so much. Growing up in a hockey town, as well as a very small community, I saw many characters I have know before. Highly recomend
Date published: 2019-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great story Definitely a bit like Friday Night Lights, but strong characters and great story.
Date published: 2019-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't Put It Down If you haven't read a book by Backman yet, this is a good one to pick up! It has everything you could ask for from a writer... it's filled with emotion and wit and has twists and turns that you don't see coming. 100% recommend this book!
Date published: 2019-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Bear Town Absolutely loved this book. You really get to know and feel for the characters. I couldn’t put it down from start to finish. You don’t have to be a hockey fan to love this book, a fantastic read!!
Date published: 2018-12-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Just OK I bought this book based on the high number of great reviews. It was just okay! I think I had higher expectations of it and was a bit disappointed at some parts. I am glad I've read it, but it was definitely a slower read for me. I would still recommend this book.
Date published: 2018-12-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent read I bought this book only because of the insane amount of good reviews, It was not at all what I expected it to be and I did really enjoyed it. It's a little slower starting but after about 100 pages its impossible to put down.
Date published: 2018-12-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it even though I don't watch hockey! I was a bit hesitant to read this book as the story suggests a tale of hockey - and I am not a sports person at all. But the book is so much more than a story about sports. It is a story about community, a story about hopes and dreams, a story about relationships and loyalty. It is a story about issues that communities keep to themselves and how that silence can affect a person.  From being hesitant about reading this story, I have become a fan of Backman's writing. His words have caused me to feel emotion, and his descriptions of a life in a small town that breathes hockey encouraged me to love his characters. Reading the story reminded me of those family films centring on sports that always have a good moral behind it but instead this story is more adult. It is a story that shows the underbelly of humanity - and yet also shows its positive side. The statements made by the author throughout the novel are succinct, and yet get straight to the heart of the issue.  I would highly recommend this novel - even if you do not watch or play hockey. You will feel emotional, you will feel anger. And you will come to understand what being part of a sports team can be to a person. 
Date published: 2018-11-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A must read! I fell in love with this book! It is so heart wrenching and will leave you wanting more! My favorite character was Benji, how can you not get attached to a wild heart, good natured hockey player.
Date published: 2018-10-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A tough story The story may not be set in Canada, but it's about hockey! Hockey and some of the not-very-nice passions that run junior hockey in a small town whose identity is based on winning. A tough story that sometimes moves too slowly but leaves a hockey-loving Grandmother with lots to think about. Looking forward to reading Backman's next book.
Date published: 2018-10-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Greatest book I've ever read Words can't even describe how much I loved this book. It's beautifully written and everything about it is as perfect as it can be. If you're scrolling through the reviews to see if its a good book to read, don't hesitate and just read it. You won't regret it.
Date published: 2018-09-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So Good! How have I not read anything by Fredrik Backman before? I love his story telling, the character development, his imagery and how he tackles and discusses the many themes in Beartown. I love how he describes emotions and how his words pulled, and sometimes tore, at my heart. I felt an entire spectrum of emotions reading this wonderful book. I think I now need to read everything Backman has written. . Beartown is a heavier read but the writing has a touch of magic to it and it is beautiful. Sometimes emotional reads leave me drained but not this book. This book almost left me energized and wanting to read more. This novel has themes of community, friendship, family, group mentality and discusses the importance of speaking up and not being a silent bystander. It discusses rape culture, homophobia and it makes you reflect upon humanity and your own values. It discusses parenting and victim guilt. All of this with the backdrop of hockey. . This book creeps up on you. It starts off slow and before you know it you are fully invested in the lives of the people who live in Beartown. My heart both rose and broke for so many of the characters for many different reasons. I highly recommend this novel
Date published: 2018-09-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Highly reccomend this book to nay Person looking for a good healthy cry
Date published: 2018-08-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Mostly loved it Thought it dragged in a few spots but mostly I loved it.
Date published: 2018-08-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Takes a while It took me forever to get through the first half of the book, I found it very boring. Afterwards things started to pick up, but that first section really brought down the ratings of the novel for me.
Date published: 2018-08-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great story! A friend of a friend had recommended this story and before picking it up, I really didn't know much about it. It drew me in from the start! While it had a lot of characters to keep track of, it was a very interesting (and very relatable) story about a town (and its community members) obsessed with the game of hockey. I am excited to read the sequel, "Us Against You."
Date published: 2018-08-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pleasantly surprised with how well the author captured victim blaming and wove it into such a fascinating story. I'm not a huge hockey fan, but I really enjoyed the way the author used the sport to connect the town in a way that created an "us against them" mentality. I grew to like all the boys, excluding Kevin and William, and fully cared for how their characters grew together. I was cheering for Beartown in the final game, and I was disappointed with the outcome. This book mirrors what we see within the media - promising young athletes who "slipped up" or "made a mistake" and are not being held to a standard the victim deserves solely because if they are, their future will be ruined. This unfairness is explored through Maya, Kira, Ana, and Peter's narrative and was done incredibly well.
Date published: 2018-08-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Important Read This book should be a must have for all youth to read, it started out with an interesting story and then as you read it it brings awareness to a crisis that is very much real in many peoples lives. It truly takes you on a roller coaster of emotions
Date published: 2018-08-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I'll be checking Us Against You The ending was bittersweet, and that’s the best way I can put it without spoiling anything. I probably wouldn’t have written it any differently; Backman even used the story technique of writing about the characters life ten years in the future. This is a particularly interesting move since he has another novel published called Us Against You, which is the continued story of the Beartown community after the incident. The aspect I love most about this is that nobody has to pick up his sequel for this story to be finished, but it’s the choice of the reader if they want more. You won’t be losing anything from the original book if you choose not to read the second. I love the freedom Backman allows his readers, and because of that, I’ll definitely be picking up a copy of Us Against You.
Date published: 2018-08-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Not Just For Hockey Lovers! On the surface, this book is about hockey. Really, it is about how a town reacts in the wake of a horrific event. While hockey plays a big part of the character development, it does not always take centre stage - this book is about the people of Bear Town. Backman manages to make each and every character real, and I felt drawn into each of their stories. I was hooked from the first page. Even if you don't know anything about hockey, you will be able to follow along with the plot, so don't let the hockey component dissuade you from reading this book. Also, I just discovered it is the first in a trilogy - the second book comes out in Canada in September!
Date published: 2018-08-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Not just a book for Hockey Lovers I absolutely loved this book! This was my first read from Backman and was not my last. I found the character development in this book to be fantastic and love how the perspective switched between all the residents of Beartown. The hockey component of the book was not so strong as to be overpowering. I am not a huge hockey fan, but I knew just enough to have those parts keep my interest. I also just saw someone reading this on the subway and was so excited to talk to them about it.
Date published: 2018-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent I wasn't sure what I would think of this book, given that I'm not a huge hockey lover but I am certainly aware of the hockey town mentality. I felt for the characters in this book, so many of them, with universal similarities. As a mother, it was heartbreaking....as a teacher, it was heartbreaking and it brought to my awareness how easily this type of tragedy can occur.
Date published: 2018-07-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read! This was an easy read for me. Perfect for long summer days.
Date published: 2018-07-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Engrossing read! A fellow reader recommended this book to me and when I finally got around to reading it I was kicking myself for not reading it sooner! It was engrossing and thought provoking. It reminded me of Herman Koch's 'The Dinner', which has stuck with me. #plumreview
Date published: 2018-07-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My favourite book this year! Loved this book so much. There were many characters you were cheering for and cheering against. The characters were beautifully written.
Date published: 2018-07-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A charming story! Similarly to Friday Night Lights, Bear Town extends far beyond the realm of youth sports. Hockey serves as the backdrop to this tight-knit community. This compelling novel and engaging characters will prompt you to re-examine relationships and open your eyes to the fragile nature of the latter. Bear Town is a great read, and you don't have to be a hockey fan to enjoy this one! #Plum Rewards
Date published: 2018-07-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read I really enjoyed this book. Didn't think it would be a 5 star rating for me due to the fact that I am not a huge hockey fan. Loved the story line, and the growth of characters.Could not put this book down. Looking forward to reading the sequel and more from this author.
Date published: 2018-07-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect I am completely mesmerized by Backman’s storytelling ability. As a hockey fan myself, this book hit all the emotional targets just as the sport does. I noticed a few spots in the book in which many other people would probably cry because of how heartfelt and real they were, but I only broke down in one spot. A coach telling his player how proud he was. I completely lost it. Belonging to a team means being a part of a family. I had a tingling feeling in my chest the entire time I was reading this book. It was absolutely incredible.
Date published: 2018-06-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Slow start... This book had a very slow start. You really don't have to have knowledge about hockey to enjo. About the middle of the book, I could not put it down. I will admit I was not a fan of the ending, hoping that maybe a sequel will come out.
Date published: 2018-05-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read! Very long but worth it! I was very excited to read this book, especially because I grew up in a smaller hockey community town. This book was very well-written, and about halfway through the book was when I really couldn't put it down. The first ten chapters were a bit slow-going, but once I hit the middle, I couldn't stop! I love how the author has so many different characters. The only reason I'm giving it 4 stars instead of 5 is because of the beginning being so slow, and the fact that the end I feel like just didn't give enough closure to the story.
Date published: 2018-05-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My favourite book of 2017 I'm re-reading Beartown in preparation for Backman's sequel coming out this year and I have recommended it to so many people, whether they like hockey (like me!) or don't.
Date published: 2018-05-22
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Too much hype Don't see what all the hype is about for this book. I couldn't get into it.
Date published: 2018-05-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enjoyed it Was hard at first to get into jumped around, but once caught on, was really good read
Date published: 2018-05-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book The first book that I've read by Backman and I absolutely loved the writing style, which was so poetic and beautiful at times. The story and characters were all so well developed, the book sucked me in to Beartown!
Date published: 2018-04-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enthralling I'm not interested in hockey and yet while I was reading this book I was intensely interested in hockey
Date published: 2018-04-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved this book Hard to get into at first but couldn't put it down by the end. Will definitely be reading more by this author!
Date published: 2018-04-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Everyone should read this This is the type of book that everyone should read. It gives you different perspectives of people who are part of a difficult situation. The book starts off a little slow but then grabs your attention.
Date published: 2018-04-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic novel! WOW! This book reads like a poem at times, the start is a fantastic portrait of a small town obsessed with hockey and all that comes with that. Midway through the book really picks up, the style continues to be amazing and the story is hard to put down. Going to grab anything i can by this author.
Date published: 2018-04-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Tough and lovely Backman's writing and storytelling is so purposeful and smart. It is a craft. He brings you into this small town, wholly, with these people, their lives, and the drama that lives with them. I think I agree with a previous review: there was a bit too much hockey talk in the beginning - and this, for me, made it difficult to be engaged at first. Once you move past this, you'll find a great story, beautifully told.
Date published: 2018-04-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great read. love this book. one of the best book that i have read.
Date published: 2018-03-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Slow at the start but worth it This novel takes a bit to get into it but you will definitely be glad you picked it up by the end. It highlights important themes in the best possible way
Date published: 2018-03-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read i had read Ove and so picked up this book as i loved A Man Called Ove. this book is nothing like that which i find really cool that the same author can write such different stories and i think that made me like the book even more.
Date published: 2018-03-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow! What a heart wrenching story! The story line was so deep and complex, and so were the characters!
Date published: 2018-03-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Plot Will Keep You On Your Toes Beartown was quite different from what I was expecting from the style of writing from Fredrick Backman, although a little different, I was not disappointed! He is an amazing author who is extremely talented to be able to make his characters come alive and make you feel for them as if they are real people. The story revolves around hockey and the moral struggles each player to the coach, GM and all the families involved deal with. There are many unsuspected surprises that pop up with the personal lives of the characters that you wouldn't expect. This book is good at keeping you on your toes, so even if you don'r like sports or hockey, you won't be bored with this story. The Gm's daughter is raped by the star player on the Beartown Ice Hockey team after being dared by one of the other players, another player witnesses the horrific act and is paid off by the guilty players father to keep quiet about it. The whole town turns against the young teen girl and her family and stand behind the hockey team, calling the girl a liar. Chapter One starts off: "Late one evening toward the end of March, a teenager picked up a double-barreled shotgun, walked into the forest, put the gun to someone else's forehead, and pulled the trigger." You will have to read the book to the very end to find out what happens!
Date published: 2018-03-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from solid it took a while to get into it, but then it got fantastic.
Date published: 2018-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Book of 2017! I really liked A Man Called Ove and Britt-Marie was Here, but Beartown was definitely my favourite Fredrik Backman novel to date! This was quite different then his other work, but it was excellent! I was totally impressed with the writing in Beartown. I highlighted so many passages throughout reading the book and I was really impressed with how Backman handled the serious topics in the novel as a male writer. I found the entire novel to be very insightful into sports culture and rape culture, both of which are often largely entwined, as well as the emotions that cause us to perceive things the way we do. It was a great novel about family, friends, sportsmanship, winning, and community (among many other things). There was so much going on in this book and so many different themes explored alongside the main theme. Definitely recommend this one for everyone! There was no part of this novel that I disliked and I think anyone can relate to the story.
Date published: 2018-03-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Phew - what a ride! Amazing if this is really how small towns obsessed with hockey operate, but it wouldn't surprise me. Loved the strength of some of the underdogs that the author brought out along the way. Had me hanging in to see how it would all end and be resolved!
Date published: 2018-03-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Powerful and Moving Like many others have said, I was feeling rather "meh" about the beginning of this book. I kept at it because I had felt that same way during "A Man Called Ove", and I had a very good friend who insisted it was one of the best books she'd ever read. Wow, am I ever glad that I did! I have never read another book quite like this one. It should be required reading in every high school. There are so many incredible characters, and the way Backman writes is like non one else. Highly recommended!
Date published: 2018-03-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Real Stuff. This author must have seen some crazy stuff in their day.
Date published: 2018-03-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Worth the Read It takes awhile for the story to pick up which made it a bit difficult to get into but once the story does pick up, it is well written and worth the read. The characters are well developed in this book.
Date published: 2018-02-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from powerful and beautifully written After reading A Man Called Ove - which I LOVED, I couldn't wait to read this book. Like some of the other reviews have said, the first part of the book is a little hard to get into, lots of hockey and small-town references and a ton of characters. but don't let this dissuade you - the first part of this book paints the picture of the beautiful story that follows. There were times reading this book where I had to stop, pause and take a breath before I could continue reading. There are moments of this book that take your breath away. Highly recommend.
Date published: 2018-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVED!!! What an amazing story! Heartwrenching...plot twisting....just kept me wanting more...MUST READ!!!
Date published: 2018-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Phenomenal POV This novel is one that I would highly recommend. Backman and structured the novel in a way that not only catches the reader, but provides astounding development and insight for his characters. He manages to take a very sensitive subject and present it in a way that all audiences can relate to.
Date published: 2018-02-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read! This book was awesome! I loved every minute of this book. The story line was really good and very thought provoking. Heart wrenching at times.
Date published: 2018-02-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Outstanding Very topical and devastating. I absolutely loved it.
Date published: 2018-02-05
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Just an okay read It took a while to read this book. It's slow and does not pick up until about page 100.
Date published: 2018-02-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very Great Book To be fair, I grew up in a hockey town, so I might be a bit biased. I very much enjoyed this novel and its characters. Would recommend!
Date published: 2018-01-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Paced I highly recommend this to anyone who wants a slow, lovely read.
Date published: 2018-01-31
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Good for a lazy Sunday This story is about a hockey town and its people living in it. It is a story about how the culture of hockey affect this town and all people in it. I thought it was ok but not my cup of tea.
Date published: 2018-01-29
Rated 1 out of 5 by from ummmm This was SO hard to get into, I wanted to give up.
Date published: 2018-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from More than just a hockey town story Beautifully written, this story is about a hockey town and its people living in it. It is a story about how the culture of hockey affect this town and all people in it. And important book to read
Date published: 2018-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved This book was so thought provoking and has such an important lesson to be learned. Very relatable and is now one of my new favourites.
Date published: 2018-01-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I LOVED this book I absolutely could not put this book down. The story and the characters sucked me right in. This story is about grief and so many different experiences with it. I also love the style of writing, where the author had you knowing what was going on with each character at the same time. An absolute must read!
Date published: 2018-01-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from loved it! fast paced, enjoyable read!
Date published: 2018-01-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved It! Beartown is a very intriguing read that shows many perspectives throughout the book. Being a hockey player at high level it I found all of these perspectives very interesting and it was a book that always kept me thinking. It is much more than a book about hockey, but rather a book about a town and the many different kinds of people that keep the town alive. I highly recommend it!
Date published: 2018-01-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I bought this book and loved every bit of this
Date published: 2018-01-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I was reluctant to order this book but I did! I should have gone with my but feeling because a few pages into the story I was disappointed.
Date published: 2018-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Don't Turn Away If Scared This Story Is JUST About Hockey - IT'S MUCH MORE! This was such a well written book and I can see why it is so highly rated. Though I found it a little hard to get into at first (and this book has been sitting on my shelf waiting for me since the start of December,) the pace picks up quickly and does not slow down from there. It did take me until I was about 20-25% into the book to feel really into it, but once I got to that point I was hooked. Fredrik has a very different writing style, and in the beginning it seemed a little redundant. Perhaps that is because I am from a small hockey town and grew up involved in the community and know how it functions. I think for someone as an outsider, what he has written is very important for them to understand the culture that surrounds this sport. The characters are so dynamic and I was moved to tears throughout this story. I strongly recommend it to anyone – please don’t feel turned off if you feel this is a ‘hockey’ story because it is so much more than that.
Date published: 2018-01-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great read Was enthralled by this book. It is really well written and a great story line.
Date published: 2018-01-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This book did not hold my attention. The characters were flat
Date published: 2018-01-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Surprisingly Great! I'm not a huge sports fan, and I don't watch much hockey so I wasn't sure I was going to like this. However, this story was absolutely enthralling. The set up is a little slow but once it got going I had a hard time putting it down. Beautifully written.
Date published: 2018-01-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok A friend recommended this to me, and it was wonderful!
Date published: 2018-01-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Top-notch literary fiction! Backman is in a league of his own! Where to start? When you absolutely LOVE a book, it is hard to know how to write a review without sounding 'gushy'. I hate gushy. Deep in a forest in Sweden lies a small town called "Beartown". Beartown is a hockey town, and this book is about hockey. But it's not really. It is about society, it is about life, parenthood, loyalty, bravery, and so very much more. It is about a scandal, and how the people of Beartown are forced to take sides... Beartown is a town that is in economic decline. Pretty much all it has left is its hockey club. The hope is that if the town's team wins the final, money and prosperity might return to the town as a result. It is hard to pinpoint a protagonist in this novel. All the characters shine brightly, and you will come to care for them all. "It doesn't take a lot to be able to let go of your child. It takes everything." The Andersson family: Peter, his wife, Kira, their fifteen year old daughter Maya, and their twelve year-old son, Leo. Peter, a former professional hockey player, is the General Manager of the Beartown Hockey Club. Kira is a talented lawyer, Maya loves her guitar, and Leo his games. Oh, and then there is Ana, Maya's best friend, who practically lives at the Andersson's. The Erdahl family: Seventeen year-old Kevin is the town's star hockey player. He was born with the talent to excel at his sport. He is the only child of affluent parents who are not demonstrative in their affections. His father is one of the primary financial backers of the team. "Kevin is too good. Kevin is the jewel, Benji the insurance policy." Benjamin (Benji), is Kevin's best friend. He has been since they were both tiny. A fighter on the ice, Benji always has Kevin's back. Kevin wouldn't be half the player he is without Benji's support, both on and off the ice. Fatima, works as a cleaner at the hockey rink. An immigrant, and the mother of fifteen year-old Amat, a small boy in stature, but a big man in moral fibre. He loves hockey and is one of the fastest skaters in Beartown. The only thing he loves more than skating, is Maya Andersson. "The most painful fall for anyone is tumbling down through a hierarchy." Sune, the A-team coach of the Beartown Hockey Club. He has been around as long as anyone can remember. He is patriarch of the hockey club and mentor to both Peter and David. David, the hockey coach. The players love him and have done so since they were seven years old. He is who they strive to win for. Ramona, the chain-smoking owner of the town's only tavern. Ramona is a childless widow. "People say she's gone mad, because that's what people who know nothing about loneliness call it." This book did exactly what literary fiction should do. It makes you think. About others in your life - about yourself. It makes you chuckle, it makes you weep. This is a book about parents and children, friendships, loyalty and betrayal, loss and loneliness, bravery and cowardice, vengeance and justice, the value of social acceptance. "Another morning comes. It always does. Time always moves at the same rate, only feelings have different speeds. Each day can mark a whole lifetime or a single heartbeat, depending on who you spend it with." In my opinion, if you spend your time reading Beartown, it is time well spent. Highly recommended!
Date published: 2018-01-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Too long Book was too long got boring really quickly
Date published: 2018-01-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it! Easily one of my top of 2017!
Date published: 2018-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read -- a Disturbing story I enjoyed how you get to know and understand all the different characters in this book. The story was disturbing to read how the boys club sticks together for the love of hockey vs what is right. As this story unfolds it made me angry to see how a hockey hero can do no wrong. How poorly a young lady can be treated in a world so focused on sports. I liked how they ended the book I only picked this book up as it was on the Top 10 list for 2017, I am so glad I did as it was an interesting story.
Date published: 2018-01-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from a good leisure read good read for parents with kids in hockey
Date published: 2018-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it one of the best books of 2017 and it's not hard to see why.
Date published: 2018-01-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really enjoyed! The writing style of this book makes it very hard to put down!
Date published: 2018-01-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Relatable and addicting read! As someone living in a small town that pushes hockey life into the young minds, I found this book incredibly relatable; seeing how hockey affects different people in different ways, as well as the influence a shared topic can have on a town, was incredibly spot on. Also the truly relatable truth of a pressing issue between the young boy and girl was very applicable to the times today. I loved this book, and it shook me to my core.
Date published: 2018-01-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read It took a bit for this one to capture my attention but once it did I couldn’t put it down.
Date published: 2017-12-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it I adored this book. It was quite difficult to read at parts because of the serious subject matter, but the intensity of the novel made it that much more satisfying. I would just say that it is kind of obvious that the novel was translated, but I was able to forgive the writing style because I loved (most) of the characters so much. I'll definitely be reading his other books
Date published: 2017-12-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read! Loved this book from start to finish. The characters were well developed with differing perspectives of the same events. It's more than a story of life in a small town or elevating athletes to near hero status; it's a story of choices, of circumstance, actions and reactions. Will read more from this author.
Date published: 2017-12-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from neat i have heard that this book is so good, i am really excited to read it #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Read I don't like hockey, but I did like this book. The best part for me was the ending, the first half of the book was not as good as some parts dragged on for too long. Some of the characters were really well developed though and overall this was an enjoyable read, especially for winter. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-28
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Boretown? I know many people praised this novel but I'm writing this review to share my dissenting opinion for those who have read the book and disliked it but may have thought, "am I crazy for disliking it?" Here's the deal. The first quarter of the book drones on endlessly about how hockey is life for everybody in the small town. It drives the entire economy. Ok, fine. We got the message the first five times but did the author have to go on and on about this concept ad nauseam for the first 160 pages? Did the author have to introduce so many characters in those 160 pages and move abruptly back and forth between these characters and their stories so that the plot and story became choppy and disjointed and lacked flow? After the first quarter of the novel when the "big event" finally occurs, the book does become better and the story started to become more interesting and started to flow better but then, BOOM or should I say BANG? The author retreats back to his previous formula of dragging the story on and on and writing in a choppy fashion. JUST GET ON WITH THE STORY! There's a good story to be told but instead of getting on with it, the story is dragged out needlessly. A good story could have been told in 200 fewer pages with an author who could have zeroed in on the appropriate emotions of the main characters better. Another thing the author does constantly is interjects questions such as "what is community?" or "what is home?" and it feels like the author is a professor writing notes before having to give a lecture to a class of students. It's a device which further fails to advance the plot. This novel was on many best 10 books of 2017 lists and for the life of me, I can't understand why. If I had a list of one million best books, this book wouldn't make the cut. All I was wishing for in the last 100 pages was for the book to end and I ended up skimming those last 100 pages as I could bear no more of reading it normally. Again, I know many liked this book but I had to get my contrary opinion out there.
Date published: 2017-12-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from amazing I loved everything about this book!
Date published: 2017-12-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved! This book had me hooked from the first page. Absolutely loved Backman's writing, and now want to read everything else he's ever written! Trigger warnings for sexual assault. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book There is something about Fredik Backman’s writing that is so compelling (although I know it has been translated). Admittedly, the pace of the novel is very slow but it is so full of small town woes nonetheless. I felt each emotion alongside the residents of Beartown and felt especially slighted and betrayed when they turned on their own kind. It was neat of Backman to give us glimpses into the future of the kids of Beartown. I just found out there’s a sequel, so I’ll definitely be looking into that!
Date published: 2017-12-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I loved it to the ending. The ending was a bit too much, but I have hope that the series will be redeemed
Date published: 2017-12-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I need to re-read this, as I rushed through it the first time because I was busy, but nonetheless, I enjoyed it.
Date published: 2017-12-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Twist of Events I enjoyed this book, but would not be on the top of the list of books I'd recommend. I thought the way that the book started and the description it was going to be strictly about the hockey town, Beartown. Half way through the book everything took a turn and it was not at all what I would have expected. After I got into it I wasn't able to put it down, but it did take a while.
Date published: 2017-12-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from worth a read I enjoyed this book and think it's high time we start exploring the free pass we place on sports figures.
Date published: 2017-12-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best book of 2017? I say YES. This was my favourite book of 2017. Backman is so skilled at the art of writing. Would make a fantastic gift for anyone this Christmas!
Date published: 2017-12-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from enjoyable this book was okay, it gets dark sometimes but overall it was very enjoyable
Date published: 2017-12-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This book was really good and full of action in the second half
Date published: 2017-12-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Amazing author with great character development.
Date published: 2017-12-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from It was okay I enjoyed the book until I hit the part at the end that tells you about their futures. It was just stupid. Skip that part and you'll feel better about the book when you put it down.
Date published: 2017-12-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok good book- takes a while to get into but left me wanting to read the sequel!!!
Date published: 2017-12-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok good book- takes a while to get into but left me wanting to read the sequel!!!
Date published: 2017-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must-Read I am a huge fan of two things: (1) hockey and (2) books that keep you guessing. This book combined both of those things. I haven't read any of the author's other books, but this one has become a personal favourite. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great Talks about issues present in our society.
Date published: 2017-12-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down Great character development and story overall.
Date published: 2017-12-05
Rated 2 out of 5 by from not my favourite it was okay, not my taste but may be yours!
Date published: 2017-12-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This book consumed me. I lived in every word, and felt every feeling.
Date published: 2017-12-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This book consumed me. I lived in every word, and felt every feeling.
Date published: 2017-12-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This book consumed me. I lived in every word, and felt every feeling.
Date published: 2017-12-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from good book This was a good, well written book! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-01
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Talks about issues present in our society.
Date published: 2017-11-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I wish I could see, smell, taste ,hear, and touch this story!
Date published: 2017-11-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Great read. The story builds up as you go along. The beginning provides the character backdrop and context. Definitely a page turner as you progress.
Date published: 2017-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome read! Really enjoyed this book. Bought it based on the review on this site and was not disappointed! Couldn't put this book down - it's fast paced, intriguing and will make your heart race.
Date published: 2017-11-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Can't wait for the next one.
Date published: 2017-11-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Meh I had huge expectations for this novel and that is probably why I was so disappointed when reading it all. Though I did get through the whole novel, and it was a good read. It is not something I would read again.
Date published: 2017-11-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I loved it I will admit it took me a few chapters to get into it, but once I did I couldn't put it down. excellent
Date published: 2017-11-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent! I can't say enough about this booked. I loved it from start to finish. I do not understand the comments that this is a "tough read" and has "a slow beginning". The beginning of the book is dedicated to the character development, which is essential to building the story. Without it, the rest of the book would not be successful. I haven't read a book this well written since The Nightingale. I also loved A Man Called Ove, though I would say that Beartown is an even more engaging story. This would be an excellent Christmas gift for anyone who loves hockey, small towns or just phenomenal storytelling.
Date published: 2017-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I couldn't put it down I think this is my favourite of the year
Date published: 2017-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow! Absolutely phenomenal writing. I felt connected to every character right from the beginning and went on an emotional journey through this incredible novel. I definitely recommend giving it a read; however, do be aware and ready for some heavy content.
Date published: 2017-11-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Long but a good book! It might take a while to get into but it's so incredible and captivating
Date published: 2017-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from love I loved this. So touching, honest, open and relatable.
Date published: 2017-11-19
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not as I expected A good story but not what I expected when rated so high
Date published: 2017-11-15
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Long book Heart wrenching and real. A good read.
Date published: 2017-11-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I’m dying for a sequel to be announced
Date published: 2017-11-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok It takes along time to finish
Date published: 2017-11-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from tough but worth it a tough novel to get through, but was heart wrenchingly worth each page
Date published: 2017-11-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from good The story was beautiful and really gets you thinking about the reality of small town challanges and values. Long in some parts and of course hard to read in others (not always in agreement with what is done).
Date published: 2017-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing, Beautiful Story I received an advance copy of this book from Simon & Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review. I’ve read a couple of other books by Backman, so when I heard this book was coming out, I knew instantly that I wanted to read it. Especially after My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologizes, which took a hard topic and made it accessible and easy to read, I was immediately intrigued by the event that takes place in this book to rock the hockey town. And holy macaroni, did Backman deliver. I don’t generally get emotional about books. But this book was so frustrating. Not because it was bad, or the author was making a mess of it, but because of the story itself and how much I disagree with some of the characters on a moral level. This is a hard book to read, because it isn’t the pretty picture we like to see in books of bad situations. It’s real, and it’s scary, and the characters worm their way into your heart until you start hurting when they do. The Good Points of Beartown: The first thing I really want to point out is how good the translation is. I’ve read a fair few translated books, and it often feels like something gets lost in the translation and it’s harder to connect with the story once it’s changed languages. But whomever translated Beartown did an amazing job. Definitely one of the best I’ve come across. The writing is also exquisite. There are so many beautiful lines and amazing quotes in this book that I promise you’ll fall in love with, on just about every theme you can imagine. I won’t say too much and spoil the story, but this book takes a really hard topic and forces the characters in the story as well as the reader to try and sort out where they stand on the topic. There’s no glossing over anything, and there are no rose coloured shades. It’s probably the first real depiction of the subject matter I’ve come across in books, and thank goodness, because it’s not something we should be sugar-coating. Kudos to Backman for not going easy on his characters. I love all the characters in this book, even the ones that were kind of awful. They were all so well rounded and so developed that you feel like you could be a resident of Beartown as well. They feel like your neighbours and friends, which is quite the feat considering the sheer number of them and the 400 and some pages of this book. The way that Backman paces this book is great. It’s long, there are tonnes of characters, and there’s a lot going on. But somehow, Backman pulls it all together in a way that you don’t get bogged down with one thing or another, jumps between parts of the story without leaving you hanging or sticking you with one situation or other too long. The Downsides of Beartown: There are a million and one characters in this book, which is a bit confusing early on. You mix up which kid is which and which adult belongs to which kid. You figure it out by about halfway through the book, but it’s a lot right off the bat. The beginning is a bit slow. All the stuff that happens in the early chapters is super important later on, and you appreciate it when you get there, but it does drag a bit. Even a bit of foreshadowing would have helped in the first hundred pages, just to keep you hooked in a little more. All in all, Beartown is an incredible read that you tear your heart to shreds, play on your emotions, and make you question your own beliefs and morals. I’ve never read a book that left me more angry, but in the best possible way. If you’re looking for a book that forces you to think and reconsider, know what it’s like to grow up and live in a small town, love the culture that surrounds sports, and/or aren’t afraid of heavy, serious topics, you’ll probably love this book. It’s one that everyone should read. I may actually end up doing another post related to this book, because I have a lot of thoughts, but don’t want to be including a bunch of spoilers in this review. And I’m not sure if I can rant about the things I want to without giving away some details about the story.
Date published: 2017-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from sweet A touching book. This author knows how to pull on your heart strings...
Date published: 2017-11-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Thought it was pretty good but not spectacular
Date published: 2017-11-06
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Thought it was pretty good but not spectacular
Date published: 2017-11-06
Rated 2 out of 5 by from bearing ahead We have a lot of bears around here but they are a different kind of bear so...not sure this covers that.
Date published: 2017-11-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I found the writing a bit boastful and dull at the same time.
Date published: 2017-11-03
Rated 2 out of 5 by from its a 50/50 for me. This is quite a long read the author really stretched out the story line here but it is worth it if this is the kind of thing your into.
Date published: 2017-11-02
Rated 2 out of 5 by from its a 50/50 for me. This is quite a long read the author really stretched out the story line here but it is worth it if this is the kind of thing your into.
Date published: 2017-11-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome!!! I so excited to read his point of view. you ready know both side the story on how he feels. CAN'T WAIT!!!!
Date published: 2017-10-31
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Such an inspiring and interesting read, simply could not put it down! Great job!
Date published: 2017-10-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I thought I would be lost with no idea about what was going on within the story or the characters. Man, I'm happy I was wrong on that account.
Date published: 2017-10-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I thought I would be lost with no idea about what was going on within the story or the characters. Man, I'm happy I was wrong on that account.
Date published: 2017-10-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I thought I would be lost with no idea about what was going on within the story or the characters. Man, I'm happy I was wrong on that account.
Date published: 2017-10-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from easy read bought this on a recommendation from a friend. .will keep you reading to find out more and see just how money talks
Date published: 2017-10-27
Rated 2 out of 5 by from no It's not especially well-written and basically serves as millennial bait.
Date published: 2017-10-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from excellent I love the examination of place in this novel. It's visceral and intriguing.
Date published: 2017-10-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great story! The story was a little slow at the beginning, but once it got going it was hard to stop. I loved the variety of characters and everything they brought to the table.
Date published: 2017-10-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfectly Swedish Everything I've come to expect from Backman - that Swedish sense of humour is so perfect.
Date published: 2017-10-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Great book! Loved it very much!
Date published: 2017-10-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This was an interesting read full of life lessons learned through experiencing a terrible loss. Reading this provides insight into the grieving mind along with strategies to support someone experiencing los
Date published: 2017-10-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Dripping with Emotion You can't help but find a love and appreciation of hockey after reading this book. There is so much raw emotion dripping from each and every page that you will feel it. This is great storytelling and characters. Just sit back and enjoy. Highly recommend. #plumreviews.
Date published: 2017-10-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok caught my attention almost immediately and I could not put it down. Great read
Date published: 2017-10-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down This was a read that made me question my world. As a person who is heavily involved in the hockey community it made me question what would I do. The story line was compelling, it will pull not only on your heartstrings but on your moral compass too. I definitely recommend this read but be prepared to be still pondering it well after you are done.
Date published: 2017-10-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Too slow/long for my own taste. This was my first Backman and I loved his writing. I really appreciated his style and rhythm. The book subject and his way to use it were good. However, the first half of the book seemed really long to me... like it took half the book to finally get to the point. And once we were finally there, I would have wanted more of it, but the book was over. I'll probably read another Backman in a near future to figure out if I love it or not.
Date published: 2017-10-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Overall, this book could have used some work but the general atmosphere was very gripping, and the character development was great!
Date published: 2017-10-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely wonderful! The same magic Backman is known to weave into his stories. Waiting for the next translation will be bothersome!
Date published: 2017-10-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I couldn't put this book down. There is always something going on that keeps you reading
Date published: 2017-10-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I couldn't put this book down. There is always something going on that keeps you reading
Date published: 2017-10-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok Found it somewhat dry at times.
Date published: 2017-10-01
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I personally wasn't a big fan.
Date published: 2017-09-30