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Bleachers Paperback – 15 Jul 2004

2.9 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow; New Ed edition (15 July 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099468190
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099468196
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 1.5 x 18 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 718,461 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


"An easy going, but not over-sentimental read, Grisham touches the soul and scores a winning touchdown with his sixteenth novel" (Evening Standard)

"I defy even the hardest jock not to shed a tear" (The Mirror)

"John Grisham is a copper-bottomed promise of reliable storytelling" (Independent)

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By A Customer on 17 Sept. 2003
Format: Hardcover
After a somewhat return to form with his last book (King of Torts).John Grisham returns with another book less than a year unfortunatly this is no legal page-turner but a story of a returning high school football hero attending his old coach's funeral.
Neely Crenshaw is the former all star quarter-back who has issues about returning ti his old high school,but once he meets up with his old buddies they start to re-live their former glories.This is were we start to find out about coach Eddie Rake's methods of training the football team, and also about the legacy he has left not just on the field but also in the town of Messina.
Bleachers is only a short story and won't take very long to read(a couple of hours) but it does have some good emotional moments which will have you reaching for your handkerchiefs.
A good stop gap till Mr Grisham gives us his next legal caper.
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Format: Paperback
Sometime last year, I read The Runaway Jury. I was hooked almost immediately and ended up buying all his books (except this, Skipping Christmas and A Painted House) on-line. I read every single one, enjoying some (The Firm, The Runaway Jury) more than others (The Partner, The Pelican Brief).
A few months ago, after forgetting about John Grisham for a while, I bought The Last Juror which reawakened my love of his books. Inevitably, I bought Bleachers, thinking that I would enjoy it despite the bad reviews from the non-Americans. They can't be die hard Grisham fans like myself, I thought.
I have to apologise to those who warned me - this book is just as pointless and impenetrable as I heard. The main character returns to his home town, after a fifteen year absence, to wait for his old high school football coach to die. The coach, it seems, has touched the lives of many men, a large proportion of whom meet up at the football field and sit in the bleachers, waiting for the inevitable.
What John Grisham is trying to do is well beyond that which can be achieved in such a short story. Neely, the main character, has very little to recommend him. He's just not been developed enough - we get little snatches of his life, his friends, his past loves but there's very little emotion evoked. I know that in a book about American football I shouldn't expect the characters to share their feelings at the drop of a hat but I did expect a wider range of emotions on Neely's part.
What we see is a town in mourning. The men that Neely commanded on the field seem shell shocked to a degree that doesn't fit in with the story.
Also, the plot is very weak. Nothing happens in this book to keep you turning the pages.
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Format: Hardcover
I am a huge fan of John Grisham's early works, so when I heard that Bleachers was being published, I was really excited and pre-ordered the book straight away.
Bleachers is a short tale about the lives of american football players who have been touched by their coach, even after his pupils stop playing the game. Most of the plot is centred around Neely, the infamous All-American player who left his home town after a sporting injury, and only returning 15 years later to pay homage to his coach, who lays on his deathbed. Neely relives the character of the coach through meeting with former players and team mates on the bleachers of the playing fields, and we discover just how much the coach is admired - and hated - through his passion and dedication to the sport.
Half way through the novel, the old team of '87 meet and relive an historical game, that turns out to be the focal point of Neely's & the coach's careers. These 30 pages are a bizarre distraction to the natural discourse of the book, set out like a play with a commentary of the match intertwined. A clever piece of writing, but it made the book seem very disjointed.
The meagre 160+ pages only took me an evening to read. Even only a short way into the book, I did not believe that Bleachers was written by the same man who wrote the hits such as A Time To Kill, and The Firm. Bleachers is a 'nice' enough tale, but I feel it lacks any substance and the desire to turn the next page. I would not recommend Bleachers to someone who is expecting the next great legal crime novel - certainly not one that will be made into a film. If you are passionate about american football, then maybe this is the book for you. For me, I am happy for Bleachers to remain on my bookshelf gathering dust, and not get so excited about his newest novel next time...
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Format: Hardcover
I am like many readers,I find an author I love and will read everything they write,often pre-ordering the title.
John Grisham is one of these authors. I love his legal thrillers where each page reveals another shock or twist and you cannot wait to get to the thrilling climax.
I even brought 'A painted House' and 'Skipping Christmas' , even though I knew they would not be legal based.
These books still had the emotion which I like in Grisham but with his latest book I found this completely missing.
Bleachers tells the story of Neely Crenshaw who goes back to his hometown - despite vowing never to do so , when his much hated but equally much loved former coach is dying.He never goes to see the coach , but spends the days before his death reminising with other former football legends in a town where football is more than just a game.If you love American football and understand the rules then you might like this book, its descriptions of 'plays' and 'moves' is detailed and complex.However for those of us that even find rugby too complex to understand this book doesn't mean much.The emotion which should be evident in a book about memories and past glories is lacking and in the end I found myself wondering what it was all about.It was almost as if we were reading the diary pages of a former player -perhaps John Grisham once played?.
I hope John Grisham returns to the courtroom for his next novel , it's what he does best.
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