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Bleachers by John Grisham

Bleachers (2003)

by John Grisham

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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3,514561,507 (3.11)85
  1. 10
    Playing for Pizza by John Grisham (KimSmyth)
    KimSmyth: Another sports themed Grisham book that is really not about sports after all
  2. 00
    The Best Short Stories of Ring Lardner by Ring Lardner (Cecilturtle)
    Cecilturtle: sports fan will enjoy this collection on baseball

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» See also 85 mentions

English (53)  Dutch (2)  German (1)  All languages (56)
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
The story while interesting is rather sad and disappointing. The events could easily have been based real characters. Grisham identifies some truths in life about victories and regret. I mildly recommend this book. Perhaps those interested in football would be best served. ( )
  GlennBell | Mar 1, 2016 |
This book is a departure from the legal fiction with which John Grisham established himself. In this book, a number of former football players return to the town of Messina to hold vigil for and then mourn their former coach, Eddie Rake. One of those players is Neely Crenshaw, a former star quarterback who was destined for great things until he sustained a career ending knee injury. In fact, the last time he'd seen Rake was in his hospital room just after the injury.

For years, Neely and his teammates have kept a secret. During halftime of the 1987 state championship game, Rake struck Neely. and Neely struck back. The team then finished the second half without any coaches and came back from a 31-0 deficit to win the game. Neely would like nothing more than to forget the glory days of his past. Slowly, Neely reintegrates into life in Messina, where the town revolves around football. He ties up some loose ends in his life. ( )
  JenniferRobb | Jan 22, 2016 |
One of Grisham's few non-legal books. An interesting story of a high-school athlete's relationship with a hard nosed, old school football coach. Offers a little insight into that extreme love/hate relationship. ( )
  biggs1399 | Jan 19, 2016 |
it was kinda like all the great teen football movies only in a book. ( )
  kdf_333 | Jan 17, 2016 |
it was kinda like all the great teen football movies only in a book. ( )
  kdf_333 | Jan 16, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
Mr. Grisham's stories -- even the short, anomalous ones like his last small book, ''Skipping Christmas'' -- generally have more storytelling force than ''Bleachers'' does. His purpose this time seems more reflective than showy, and his love for this sports-related subject matter is palpably real.

» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Grishamprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gyllenhak, Ann-SofieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gyllenhak, UlfTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Ty, and the wonderful kids he played high school football with;
their superb coach;
and the memories of two state titles
First words
The road to Rake Field ran beside the school, past the old band hall and the tennis courts, through a tunnel of two perfect rows of red and yellow maples planted and paid for by the boosters, then over a small hill to a lower area covered with enough asphalt for a thousand cars.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0385340877, Paperback)

With Bleachers John Grisham departs again from the legal thriller to experiment with a character-driven tale of reunion, broken high school dreams, and missed chances. While the book falls short of the compelling storytelling that has made Grisham a bestselling author, it is nonetheless a diverting novella that succeeds as light fiction.

The story centers on the impending death of the Messina Spartans' football coach Eddie Rake. One of the most victorious coaches in high school football history, Rake is a man both loved and feared by his players and by a town that relishes his 13 state titles. The hero of the novel is Neely Crenshaw, a former Rake All-American whose NFL prospects ended abruptly after a cheap shot to the knees. Neely has returned home for the first time in years to join a nightly vigil for Rake at the Messina stadium. Having wandered through life with little focus since his college days, he struggles to reconcile his conflicted feelings towards his former coach, and he assays to rekindle love in the ex-girlfriend he abandoned long ago. For Messina and for Neely, the homecoming offers the prospect of building a life after Rake.

Physically a narrow book, Bleachers is a modest fiction in many respects. The emotional scope is akin to that of a short story, with a single-minded focus on explorations of nostalgia and regret. The dialogue, especially that of Neely's friend Paul Curry, is sometimes wooden as characters recall Messina history in paragraphs that were perhaps better left to the narrator. But Grisham has otherwise written a well-made, entertaining--if a bit sentimental--story. --Patrick O'Kelley

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:31 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

"High school all-American Neely Crenshaw was probably the best quarterback ever to play for the legendary Messina Spartans. Fifteen years have gone by since those glory days, and Neely has come home to Messina to bury Coach Eddie Rake, the man who molded the Spartans into an unbeatable football dynasty." "Now as Coach Rake's "boys" sit in the bleachers waiting for the dimming field lights to signal his passing, they replay the old games, relive the old glories, and try to decide once and for all whether they love Eddie Rake - or hate him. For Neely Crenshaw, a man who must finally forgive his coach - and himself - before he can get on with his life, the stakes are especially high."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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