Large Print - 2003
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High school all-American Neely Crenshaw was probably the best quarterback ever to play for the legendary Messina Spartans. Fifteen years have gone by since those glory days, and Neely has come home to Messina to bury Coach Eddie Rake, the man who molded the Spartans into an unbeatable football dynasty. Now, as Coach Rake's "boys" sit in the bleachers waiting for the dimming field lights to signal his passing, they replay the old games, relive the old glories, and try to decide once and for all whether they love Eddie Rake -- or hate him. For Neely Crenshaw, a man who must finally forgive his coach ---- and himself -- before he can get on with his life, the stakes are especially high.
Publisher: New York : Random House Large Print, 2003
ISBN: 9780375433306
Characteristics: 276 p. (large print) ; 22 cm


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Aug 15, 2018

This is a great book. It is different from most Grisham books but it was a page turner.

unless you are fascinated by American football, give this a miss

Aug 06, 2015

not one of his best. I didn't care for any of the characters or the plot. the only positive is that the book is short

A patron review from the Adult Summer Game: "This was a very quick read as it is only 163 pages and can be completed in single, dedicated sitting. In this story, former high school football players return to their hometown of Messina due to their former coach's imminent death and funeral. While they sit in vigil, they reminisce about their glory years together under the intense leadership of their former coach, Eddie Rake. He is a "win at all costs", "never lose", "love him or hate him", type of character and had a great influence over his players and on the town of Messina in general due to their legendary success as a football team under his direction. This book focuses mostly on the recollection of events and their impact in the life of Neely Crenshaw, a former admired, successful star quarterback for the Messina Spartans. His very strong feelings about the coach and the necessary resolution he requires drives the book. This book would probably be most enjoyed by former athletes as they may share some of the emotions/experiences written about in Bleachers."

Jul 09, 2014

Totally loved this book. I don't like football and don't understand it ~ but that didn't put me off. If you go beyond that, it is a great little book with interesting characters.

jeanner222 Nov 09, 2012

Another detour for the almighty Grisham—this one isn’t so great. Bleachers is a slim volume with very little plot or character development.

Coach Eddie Rake is dying, and his former players have returned to Messina to say goodbye to the toughest football coach that ever lived. Rake’s Spartans have a love/hate relationship with Coach, and Neely Crenshaw, our protagonist, is no exception. But the All-American quarterback seems to be quite a bit bitterer about his relationship with Rake.

As Neely and his fellow Spartans reminisce, the truth about Coach Rake is revealed—the good, the bad, and the ugly.

This is a disappointment after reading Playing for Pizza. Grisham needs to stick to his legal thrillers.

May 26, 2012

I thoroughly enjoyed this book - yes I'm a football fan and yes, I'm a Grisham fan. This was a quick light read.

Sep 10, 2011

You really have to love football to like this book. Not the usual good Grisham!

May 28, 2010

Not too exciting, but very interesting and dramatic. The usual good reading from Grisham. Also very strongly recommend 'Playing for Pizza', Heartwarming and funny.


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FavouriteFiction Oct 31, 2009

High School all-American Neely Crenshaw returns to his home town to say farewell to his former coach Eddie Rake. He reconnects with other former players to discuss old times, their late Coach and whether they can forgive him.


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