3 Stars Reviews

Book Review: Beartown by Fredrik Backman

Goodreads summary: People say Beartown is finished. A tiny community nestled deep in the forest, it is slowly losing ground to the ever encroaching trees. But down by the lake stands an old ice rink, built generations ago by the working men who founded this town. And in that ice rink is the reason people in Beartown believe tomorrow will be better than today. Their junior ice hockey team is about to compete in the national semi-finals, and they actually have a shot at winning. All the hopes and dreams of this place now rest on the shoulders of a handful of teenage boys. Being responsible for the hopes of an entire town is a heavy burden, and the semi-final match is the catalyst for a violent act that will leave a young girl traumatized and a town in turmoil. Accusations are made and, like ripples on a pond, they travel through all of Beartown, leaving no resident unaffected. 

I’ve wanted to read this for SO. LONG. I lived in Sweden for just under a year during undergrad and absolutely fell in love with the country. I lived in a real hockey town too, though not as small as Beartown, so I was really excited to read this. I enjoyed it, but I was a little disappointed. There were a lot of characters, all of which were fleshed out, memorable, and interesting. The characters definitely carry the narrative. It felt like the book was trying to address a lot of different social issues but ended up not really fully dealing with any of them as adequately as it thought it was. Saying that, I enjoyed the ‘world’ and the characters in it so it’s likely I’ll read the sequel.

Rating: 3 / 5 stars

Read for the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge prompt: a book about or involving a sport.

1 thought on “Book Review: Beartown by Fredrik Backman”

Leave a comment