☕ Book Break ☕ |~Beartown by Fredrik Backman~

~Beartown by Fredrik Backman~

Fredrik Backman can always hook me with the characters he creates, plunging me into a story. Beartown is no exception.

A small town is slowly dying. The one thing they have going for them is their hockey team. With little else to hold on to, the pride of the townspeople is tied up in the performance of their young men.

Beartown is fiction that portrays a realistic picture of what a sports town looks like and goes into the reasons why people get so involved and invested in sports. The characters in this book are complex. This book makes you think. Watching the story unfold, one can understand how something like the incidents and crimes that take place could happen.

There is violence. A lot of language in this book, but it feels natural. This is how it is. This is what can happen.

I did start to get worried towards the end, and while there’s no unringing the bell, there is a certain level of satisfaction with the way the story wraps up. An well done portrayal of a sports crazed town and of human behavior.

This one is a serious read that will stay with you for a while. It’s not an easy read due to some of the subject matter, but definitely one on my must read list. Gritty. Thought provoking. There are issues that may be of concern for some. There is a sequel, Us Against You.

Book Review| A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

I didn’t expect to be captured by this story, but I was. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman and translated by Henning Koch opens with Ove in a computer store, trying unsuccessfully to communicate with one of the employees. Having often been stymied by things tech, I could so relate to the quandary Ove had in the store.

A recent retiree,  Ove is the typical outspoken, inflexible grump, but we suspect from the get go he just might have reason to be. His life is severely structured by routine and he lives his days out following his own strict ideas of what is right. Patrolling the neighborhood, he keeps watch, always ready to enforce The Rules. A young family moves in next door and immediately upset Ove by running into his mailbox.

This character driven tale spins out beautifully, feeding us bits that make up Ove’s story as we need them. It is a poignant story about the human condition, of learning to love and be loved, of looking past the oft not-so-lovely exterior and seeing a fellow human. I was moved. Ove isn’t a man you would care to deal with, but we can’t help but love him, warts and all.

The novel jumps around in time, but is easy to follow. The story is sweet, funny, and sad all at the same time. I think this one may end up on my favorites list. It’s not often a book can make me laugh, cry, and think.

I listened to the audio book narrated by George Newbern and was well done. On a side note, a good narrator can ruin an otherwise good book, but this is a good narrator. The audiobooks I select books are greatly influenced by who is reading, and whether or not past books by an author were narrated well.

I will be checking out other books by Fredrik Backman.

I did not realize this novel had been made into a movie, and I plan to watch it sometime. I am big on reading the book first, and this is a good one. I can’t imagine a movie being as good as the novel. If you watched the movie or read the book, let me know what you thought.

Recommended. Some language and the content is serious at times.

Click here for a reading guide from Simon and Schuster for A Man Called Ove.

Here’s another reading guide from LitLovers.

I’d love to hear from you! Leave a comment below. This book is full of wonderful quotes. Here’s a few.



“And time is a curious thing. Most of us only live for the time that lies right ahead of us. A few days, weeks, years. One of the most painful moments in a person’s life probably comes with the insight that an age has been reached when there is more to look back on than ahead. And when time no longer lies ahead of one, other things have to be lived for. memories, perhaps.”