Beartown by Fredrik Backman

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Beartown is all about hockey. The boys in this town all play, the men coach and donate, the town watches and cheers. The boys are unnecessarily idolized by the men and there is a lot of pressure for the team to win.

Because the people in Beartown are sad or worn down and hockey is a highlight in their small town, there is a skewed importance on the sport. Their town isn’t always an easy place to live but hockey is always there.

There are twists in the plot that I didn’t see coming and a third if the way in the real storyline emerges. There are a wide range of characters between the players, coaches, manager, over involved parents, the other kids who root on the team, and other townspeople. Backman does a great job of building the background and understanding of what drives the main characters.

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