A Novel

Book - 2017
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A poignant story of a hockey town paralyzed by scandal. Jobs are disappearing and Beartown is slowly dying, so for its citizens, hockey is everything. This is the story not just of hockey, but of a 15-year-old named Maya Andersson, whose father, Peter, the general manager of the hockey club, loves hockey, but loves his family more. Seventeen-year-old Kevin Erdahl is the star of Beartown, with a chance to go professional. One night, after a huge win, Maya goes to a raucous party at Kevin's house and is thrilled at his attention, but things get out of hand, and what takes place changes Beartown forever.
Publisher: Toronto, Ontario : Simon and Schuster, A Division of Simon and Schuster, Incorporated, 2017.
Edition: Simon & Schuster Canada edition.
ISBN: 9781501163104
Characteristics: 418 pages ;,24 cm
Additional Contributors: Smith, Neil - Narrator
Alternative Title: Björnstad.


From Library Staff

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.

Beartown explores the hopes that bring a small community together, the secrets that tear it apart, and the courage... Read More »

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Jun 19, 2019

DNF - About a hockey crazy town

Jun 16, 2019

Overly dramatic, preachy, slow read.

Jun 12, 2019

Fabulous book. I don't care for hockey, but this book is about hockey in the same way The Boys in the Boat is about rowing.

Great character development, great storytelling. The tale is told by leading out a little rope at a time.

Fabulous first VERY SHORT chapter that lets you know upfront how it will end, but takes a fascinating journey getting to the predicted end.

_McGeek_ Jun 04, 2019

I was recommended this book by many people and it did not disappoint. It was written in such an interesting and captivating way I hadn't expected and was pleasantly surprised. I honestly don't think it matters that I grew up in Canada raised around hockey and hockey rinks, and currently live in a mountain town, I don't think it makes this book any more enjoyable for me than it would for someone with no hockey knowledge who grew up on a beach. It's about the people, the culture, and the dangers of sports idolization in general, no previous hockey knowledge required.

VaughanPLDavidB Mar 12, 2019

Understanding that this is is trilogy has radically altered my initial dim view of this book. It is actually the excellent opening act of the story of the death of Beartown. I'm more than half way though Part 2, Us Against You, and loving it.

Feb 27, 2019

This was my first novel by Mr. Backman. I absolutely loved it. I am not a hockey or sports fan, and, when reading the synopsis, it echoed common story lines (13 Reasons Why), so I was intrigued to see how it was going to be different. After the first few chapters, it was apparent why it has such high ratings. He is very detailed in character development and foreshadowing. By the time I reached the climax of the novel, I felt close with the characters and felt an emotional connection with each. I'm looking forward to reading Us Against Them, as well as A Man Called Ove and his other books.

Feb 25, 2019

This is one of my favourite books EVER! He is a beautiful, compassionate writer that has an incredible gift. I can hardly wait to read the sequel to see where the characters go... I loved “A Man Called Ove” but “Beartown” was even better!

Feb 01, 2019

Absolutely love this author and his story-telling and character development abilities. This was like Friday Night Lights on steroids except it's about hockey and takes place in a small town in Sweden. Mr. Backman takes the reader through a cast of characters and shows how all their individual hopes, dreams, wins, losses, and motivations, intertwine to contribute to the culture and obsession associated with a town that hangs its success and survival on a single sport. I was not a hockey fan before, but after reading this book can see how it can become a part of your mind, body and soul. A totally engrossing read and well worth the time. Also, since this book was originally written in Swedish, mega kudos to the person(s) who translated this into English...........a magnificent job!

Jan 29, 2019

Mr. Backman takes a current and controversial subject and knits a story together that is very well written, keeps you engaged, and most of all, makes you think. If you think you will put this book down and not think about what you have just read, you are sorely mistaken.

The characters, the town, all of it, is neatly thought out, thoughtfully told. Very fitting for this controversial subject. You will not be left knowing all the characters, their fears, their triumphs, almost every singular aspect about them. Truly and engaging and thoughtfully story. So many hopes and dreams, of young teenagers, aspiring to be more than they are, dreaming of their future, a town also aspiring on those same inspirations to become something bigger than it is. Then when tragedy grips the town and people have to take sides, this is when the dark side of humanity comes out at its worst to divide friends as well as the town. How Mr. Backman brings this story to life and to its end, is the mark of a very good author.

I read and enjoyed Mr. Backman's previous book which I enjoyed very much, I had to give this new book a shot. I was not disappointed. I can not encourage you enough to read this book. You WILL NOT regret it.

neyoscribbles Jan 23, 2019

Backman delivers once again!!!!!!! I don’t follow hockey at all but you will become one with hockey and this town. It has all the charm and worries of a struggling small town that has fallen prey to one-ish identity. Although there are tons of characters, they all manage to provide some kind of insight for the reader. It is very easy to keep track of all their backstories and character developments. Backman writes in a manner that both breaks your heart and simultaneously restores your faith in those around you. I found the ending to be just perfect, so I am curious as to what the sequel will entail…

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Dec 27, 2018

You've never been alone. You just need to be better at choosing the company you keep.

Sep 02, 2018

"Sometimes life doesn't let you choose your battles. Just the company you keep."

Sep 02, 2018

"Staying silent in return for being allowed to join in."

Sep 02, 2018

"Sune has always been more interested in the length of the string than the size of the balloon."

Sep 02, 2018

"That was the morning the boy realized that the only way to become better than the bears at their own game was to stop playing it their way."

JanieHH Aug 02, 2017

“She’s fifteen, above the age of consent, and he’s seventeen, but he’s still “the boy” in every conversation. She’s “the young woman”.

Words are not small things.”
― Fredrik Backman, Beartown

letstakeashelfie Jun 22, 2017

"There's a thin line between living and surviving, but there's one positive side effect of being both romantic and very competitive: you never give up." -p.123

Jun 02, 2017

“Community is the fact that we work toward the same goal, that we accept our respective roles in order to reach it. Values is the fact that we trust each other. That we love each other…. For me, culture is as much about what we encourage as what we actually permit.” - p. 210

Jun 02, 2017

“People sometimes say that sorrow is mental but longing is physical. One is a wound, the other an amputated limb, a withered petal compared to a snapped stem. Anything that grows closely enough to what it loves will eventually share the same roots. We can talk about loss, we can treat it and give it time, but biology still forces us to live according to certain rules: plants that are split down the middle don’t heal, they die.” - p. 138

Jun 02, 2017

“One of the plainest truths about towns and individuals is that they usually don’t turn into what we tell them to be, but what they are told they are.” - p. 73

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JCLEmilyD Sep 09, 2017

Violence: rape

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