Us Against You

Us Against You

A Novel

Book - 2018
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"After everything that the citizens of Beartown have gone through, they are struck yet another blow when they learn their beloved local hockey team will soon be disbanded. Even more galling is the obvious pleasure that all the former Beartown players, who now play for the club in nearby Hed, feel about this news. As tensions between the two rivals rise, it falls to Peter, Beartown Hockey's general manager, to find a way to rescue the Bears. But even as Peter fights to delay the end of the club, someone else is already planning its rebirth. Elisabeth Zackell is a no-nonsense former pro-athlete, handpicked to be Beartown's new hockey coach. Shrugging off the ugly rumors about her, Zackell begins to build a new team around Amat, the fastest player you'll ever see; Benji, the crazed lone wolf; and Vidar, a born-to-be-bad troublemaker. Bringing the team together is a challenge, one that becomes even more difficult when Benji is outed, leaving his friends and teammates feeling betrayed by his having kept his sexuality a secret for years. Old bonds are broken, new ones are formed, and the rivalry with Hed grows ever more intense. As the big match approaches and winter darkness settles across both towns, the not-so-innocent pranks and incidents between the communities grow more dangerous, and hatred grows deeper. When the last game is finally played, one of Beartown's key players will be dead, and residents of both towns will be forced to wonder whether, after all they've been through, the game they love can ever return to something simple: a hockey stick each, two goals, two teams; us against you, in its purest, most innocent form. Us against you is a declaration of love for all the big and small, bright and dark stories that form and color our communities. Compelling and heart-breaking, it's a rollercoaster of emotions, and it is Fredrik Backman at his very best."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Toronto :, Simon & Schuster,, 2018
Edition: Simon & Schuster Canada edition
ISBN: 9781501163128
Branch Call Number: F BAC
Characteristics: 435 pages ; 23 cm

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a
annbiggar
Nov 08, 2018

Strib op ed

s
StaciaEHBurton
Oct 30, 2018

What a read !

I have been impressed by Fredrik Bachman before, specifically: My Grandmother Told Me to Tell You She's Sorry, but this takes the prize. Regardless of the fact that I have zero interest in the game of hockey, Fredrik makes these characters come alive so vividly that I readily chowed this down within the week's allotted time frame. Just wanting to mention how accurately this story conveys the politics of the heart on many levels.

Best - Stacia

s
swheeler89
Oct 22, 2018

Agreeing with feedback... I loved Beartown and struggled with this. It was not how he used one character from a previous novel (Brit Marie from My Grandmother Asked Me...) to form a whole new novel and storyline. Us Against You spends the first 100 pages recapping Beartown and the rest stuck in his prior novel. That being said, he is the best new story-teller and I still enjoyed the book. But a big let-down compared to his prior works. Hoping for some fresh material in the future.

c
charlotfun
Oct 22, 2018

I enjoyed Beartown, but this novel read like a repeat of the same story, 5 minutes later. Disappointed!

c
CarleeMcDot
Oct 18, 2018

This is the follow-up book of Beartown. I really enjoyed the first book and was excited to get into this one (although, truth be told, I didn’t have overly high expectations because I was worried the first would be hard to top - sequels always tend to fall a bit short in my eyes). I started it on our plane ride to Hawaii, and, I’ve gotta say, I sort of wanted the flight to be longer so I could finish it. I wouldn’t say it was as amazing as the first (mostly because I felt like there was so much going on it was hard to dive into all of the different characters and story lines as much as I would have liked), but I definitely liked it. I really enjoy the foreshadowing done throughout the book that keeps me on my toes (the author sets you up for an event and then it happens to someone you weren’t expecting). And seeing as hockey season just started, I think it was perfect timing for me to pick up this book. I would give it a 9 out of 10.

p
pennys54
Oct 03, 2018

Predictable, soapy, very disappointing

JCLAmandaW Sep 19, 2018

Backman's regular attempts at philosophy and constant foreshadowing of events (with spoilers!) made it hard for me to get through this book. I did hang in to the end only because he managed to create an interesting story with characters I cared enough about to see where the story took them.

h
h19835195
Sep 16, 2018

Backman has had me hooked since A Man Called Ove, but I found this particular book spent too much time going over the events of the previous book "Beartown", which made it not as enjoyable for me. However, I do love the authors ability to grasp the nuances of people, small towns, and the complexities of life. His characters are always interesting.

w
wmtlady
Sep 13, 2018

"Beartown" is the book preceding this one. For some reason, Backman felt it wasn't enough to make some scattered references to what took place in that book; he takes a full third of this book to rehash and philosophize about the former story. Then he carries on with "the rest of the story." I had to take away a star from this very good book because of how arduous and wearying it was to read that beginning third part. Again, the editors seem to give writers a free hand once they knock off a few winners. Aside from that, Backman fans will find this a rewarding read.

a
abbi_g
Sep 07, 2018

"It's so easy to get people to hate one another. That's what makes love so impossible to understand. Hate is so simple that it always ought to win. It's an uneven fight."

Fredrik Backman can do no wrong in my eyes. I love his writing. I love his stories. I love his characters. I love his novels!

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Quotes

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c
cknightkc
Jun 30, 2018

“Sometimes good people do terrible things in the belief that they’re trying to protect what they love.” - pp. 1 - 2

c
cknightkc
Jun 30, 2018

“What does it take to be a good parent? Not much. Just everything. Absolutely everything.” - p. 4

c
cknightkc
Jun 30, 2018

“Sports are only sports until someone who doesn’t give a damn about sports has something to gain from them; then sports suddenly become economics.” - p. 26

c
cknightkc
Jun 30, 2018

“At some point almost everyone makes a choice. Some of us don't even notice it happening, most don't get to plan it in advance, but there's always a moment when we take one path instead of another that has consequences for the rest of our lives. It determines the people we will become, in other people's eyes as well as your own.” - p.336

c
cknightkc
Jun 30, 2018

“The complicated thing about good and bad people alike is that most of us can be both at the same time.” - p. 368

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cknightkc
Jun 30, 2018

“..communities are like ice, not water. They don’t suddenly flow in new directions because you ask them to, they change inch by inch, like glaciers. Sometimes they don’t move at all”.

p
Pigmama6
Jun 26, 2018

"Why does anyone love team sports? Because we want to be part of a group? For some people the answer is simply that a team is a family. For anyone who needs an extra one or never had one in the first place."

DBRL_ReginaF Jun 21, 2018

"He’s twelve years old, and this summer he learns that people will always choose a simple lie over a complicated truth, because the lie has one unbeatable advantage: the truth always has to stick to what actually happened, whereas the lie just has to be easy to believe."

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