After reading Beartown, I knew I would be reading the sequel, Us Against You by Fredrik Backman. This book picks up pretty much where Beartown ends. It was an easier book to get into because I already knew the characters and the town. It was like visiting a town you already know well.
Like Beartown, this book is intense and the story line is how the families, the hockey team and the community are picking up the pieces from their town crumbling. The town is still divided, some turning to Hed, another local community and hockey rival, and others willing to put in the effort to salvage Beartown's team against all odds.
If you are a fan of Beartown, you will definitely be a fan of Us Against You. In some ways, I enjoyed this one more. Backman's writing is top notch, as usual. It explores the characters more, it plays with your emotions in the best way, and it continues to deal with a number of social issues which no other author does like Backman.
One of the main topics is the aftermath of rape for the survivor, the family and friends, and the community. For most authors, this would be more than enough to take on, but Backman takes it all on, sexual orientation, politics of a small town, death and grief, and various complicated relationships,
Benji and Maya are still my favourite characters, but the large cast all bring something to the story. The new coach quickly became a third favourite for me in this one. Love her spunk. You'll see! The politician... not so much.
This is a series that needs to be read in order and it continues to build upon itself. I cannot wait for the third book, coming in 2021.
Bookworm Rating: 🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛