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Beartown: A Novel by Fredrik Backman
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Beartown: A Novel (original 2016; edition 2017)

by Fredrik Backman (Author)

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3523831,026 (4.14)25
Member:stoutlibrary
Title:Beartown: A Novel
Authors:Fredrik Backman (Author)
Info:Atria Books (2017), Edition: Tra, 432 pages
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Beartown by Fredrik Backman (2016)

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Showing 1-5 of 38 (next | show all)
This is my first Backman novel and now I want to read them all immediately. I began this book on audio but since my time expired on my library account, I had to finish the last 15 chapters by checking out the physical book from my library. (Thank goodness it was available!) This riveting story of the town of Beartown in Finland (I think) is centered on its inhabitants whose lives are consumed with hockey. But, it isn't just a hockey story, but a story of coming of age, peserverence, and so much more. Gosh, I really loved this book. Read it. Listen to it. It doesn't matter.

The book starts with a teenager holding a gun to someone's head and then takes you through the previous year to find out how the teen got to that point. There is tension and heartbreak and friendship and hatred. But, most of all there is love....love shown many different ways by people who maybe weren't loved much themselves and others who love so much they would put their own lives in jeopardy.

"Sometimes life doesn't let you choose your battles. Just the company you keep." ( )
  Staciele | Sep 8, 2017 |
I hated the story. It was tense, ugly, nasty, divisive and destructive. I loved the truth of the story. Extraordinary perspective and juxtaposition. Spectacular writing. ( )
  kimkimkim | Aug 21, 2017 |
BEARTOWN
Fredrik Backman

MY RATING ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
PUBLISHER Simon & Schuster Audio
PUBLISHED April 25, 2017
NARRATED Marin Ireland

BEARTOWN Is a masterfully thought-provoking book about community, integrity and courage.

SUMMARY
Beartown is a small town on the edge of the forrest. The town is losing the fight; the fight with with the forrest the economy and the cold. Hockey is the town’s only hope. It is what brings everyone together, but, can just as easily tear everyone apart. The junior hockey team is headed for the national semi-finals, and the win is important to the economic survival of the town. Being responsible for the hopes and dreams of the town is a heavy burden for the boys; the Bears from Beartown.

The aftermath of the match is a catalyst for a violent act, that leaves a 15 year old girl traumatized, and a town in turmoil. Accusations are made that ripple through Beartown, tearing the town in two. BEARTOWN explores what it takes to bring a community together, what can tear it apart, and the courage to stand up for the right thing.

REVIEW
I am emotional exhausted from reading this book! I feel like I have been to Beartown and seen the hockey tournament, been to the afterparty, attended a town meeting, and met all the residents at the Bearskin It's been like riding a emotional roller coaster,

BEARTOWN seemed a little slow off the starting line. A good many pages were spent introducing the characters; and there is a huge cast of characters including: the members of the hockey team, the hockey coaches, the hockey management, the family members, the town merchants, and the team sponsors, just to name a few of the groups. I stopped counting characters at 25! Just as I beginning to wonder if this book would be worth the read, the pucks started flying. Bang! Bang! Bang! When the semi-final game began, BEARTOWN was totally game on! And by the end of game day I realized that without that tremendous character build up, BEARTOWN is just another story. The understanding of the characters and the town, is essential to what makes this book great.

FREDRIK BACKMAN’s writing is masterful. Below are just a few of my favorite quotes.

“You can’t live in this town, you can only survive it.”
“The people that live in Beartown are as tough as the forrest, and as hard as the ice.”
“When you win, you own the clouds.”
“There are a thousand ways to die in Beartown, especially on the inside.”
“Time always moves at the same rate, only feelings have different speed. Every day can be a whole lifetime or a single heartbeat, depending on who you spend it with.”

The setting; the encroaching forrest, the frost-biting cold, and the rabid hockey culture all coalesce to create an instrumental part of this story. It's almost as if the setting is another character in the book. BEARTOWN Is a wonderful thought-provoking novel about community, integrity and courage.


A prayer is handwritten on a scrap of paper stuck to the wall of a 15-year-old boy’s room. He reads it every day.

If you are honest people may deceive you, be honest anyway
If you are kind people may accuse you of selfishness, be kind anyway
All the good you do today will be forgotten by others tomorrow, do good anyway
What you create, others can destroy, create anyway,
Because in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and anyone else anyway.

When the boy was five he added this line in red crayon:
They say I'm to little to play, become a good player anyway.

He did! ( )
  LisaSHarvey | Aug 18, 2017 |
I ended up really enjoying this one. And since there are many reviews and details of it everywhere, I'm not going into the whole story here. My only negative is that I missed the quirky characters and light-heartedness that I felt in Backman's other novels (I missed Ove and Britt-Marie!). That being said, by the time I got half-way through the book (I think the second half was definitely the best part), I started to understand why everyone was giving it such good reviews. I liked it that much too. The author really had a lot of good things to say. I definitely recommend this book to one and all! ( )
  TerriS | Aug 17, 2017 |
Wow. I don't feel good after finishing this. I feel depressed, blue. The writing was excellent the emotional depth completely overwhelming. I don't read books with rape. I don't like to see it used as entertainment. There was nothing here but brutal honesty about all the views. Each person had a different reaction, different reasoning, it was painful to read at times. I finished this book and didn't feel good. I'm glad I read it now, but if I had known what it was about before I picked it up I wouldn't have read it. I read for release, escape, the dream, not a nasty dose of reality like this book went into. I am rating this on my feelings on the book not the writing.
Humans can be so cruel. Humans can be such selfish jerks. Humans can reason anything no matter how horrible if it make sit easier on them. Humans justifying rape is WRONG. The mentality of this town is so wrong. Humans will fight dirty to stay in the crowd. Humans can also be kind, unwavering and wonderful but these standouts can be rare in tough times.
This book, arguh, emotional roller coaster. I've known all these people at one time in my life. The realistic feel of them makes the punch in the gut more painful. It's all begins to decline with the rape of a 15 year old girl. You know the story, you've herd in on the news on TV shows, the blame game. Mr. Backman takes us to a deeper level and to the outer levels of this traumatic event. How Hockey rules over empathy, over friends, over family in this town and how it goes down, down. ( )
  TheYodamom | Aug 4, 2017 |
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For my grandmother, Saga Backman, who taught me to love sports. What a quiet life I would have lived without her. I hope that the big bar in heaven serves proper dry martinis, and that they always show Wimbledon on the big screen. I miss you.

And for Neda Shafti-Backman, my funniest, smartest, most argumentative best friend, who picks me up when I need it, and keeps my feet on the ground when I deserve it. Asheghetam.
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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.
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