Finished Beartown by Fredrik Backman. I received a copy for review.
Beartown is a hockey town. Pretty much everyone who lived there played hockey when they were younger (or has a kid who plays now). Hockey is king and there is definitely a culture that a kid who plays hockey can get away with anything. This is their team’s year–the boys are in the semifinals and it’s believed they can go all the way. And then a crime is committed, one that throws everything into jeopardy. Sides are picked. Horrible things are said and done.
This is about as different from A Man Called Ove as you can get. If you read this, be aware that it’s basically nothing but hockey for almost half the book. (It’s still interesting; I hate sports and I was still…well, not riveted, but invested enough to keep going.)
The second half is much better than the first. The first half is hockey and characters; the second is action and further character development—the reader learns just how decent these people are, and the happy answer is that most people do the best they can. (Some are still awful but they are the minority.)
Fredrik Backman is an amazing author. You really need to read this. Recommended.