Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Monday, June 12, 2017

Bear Town by Fredrik Backman

How I Heard About It:  Two of my favorite novels published for adults are A Man Called Ove and My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell She's Sorry.  I was excited to learn that he was releasing a new novel this past spring.  Being the end of the school year, I didn't get to it as soon as I had hoped, but once I got into it the last couple of days, I couldn't put it down. 

What It Is About:  Hockey is everything.  At least it is everything in Bear Town.  Bear Town is a small town located in the middle of a forest.  There isn't much to do in this town, but everyone knows how important hockey is not only to the young men that play, but all of the community members.  The team is made up of a variety of members who all come from different backgrounds and family life.  After a win in the semi-finals which will send the team to the "Juniors Finals", there is a tragedy which involves the general manager's daughter.  This event tears the small town apart dividing them into two halves with opposite view points.  At the center of this "debate" is one young female and the star hockey player.  The supporting cast of characters seem to either "side" with the female while others stand by the hockey player.  Life for everyone in this tiny hockey village will never be the same and many of them learn what is truly important in life.  

What I Thought Of It:  Fredrik Backman is quite the talented writer.  Each of each novels is so different from the others.  After reading previews that this story centered around hockey, I knew it was going to stand apart from his earlier stories.  When I first started I was a bit confused because there is quite an array of characters.  I actually got to a point where I wrote down the characters and what each of their "roles" was.  The more I read, the more I began to know them all.  This time around, the writing style was different.  The story consisted of short passages centering on the various people.  As the reader, you got a glimpse of each person and how the story affected them.  I did have a few favorite characters and they warmed my heart with the decisions they made throughout the story.  As I got to the final third of the book, I literally could not be the book down.  There was a such a powerful ending that it almost made me want to start over and read it again.  

Who Should Read It:   Everyone should read this novel because I know they will love it.  Even if you don't normally read novels published for adults, you need to give this one a try.  If you have read the previous Backman novels, then you must read his newest release.  If you have any background and/or history with hockey, then you should experience the story.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  5 STARS out of 5 Stars

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