Review: BleachersEditorial Review - Bookreporter.com - Stuart Shiffman
BLEACHERS takes us to the community of Messina, Mississippi during four days in October as the town anticipates the death of Eddie Rake, the legendary high school football coach who molded the Messina Spartans into a state high school football dynasty. The four days are viewed through the eyes of Neely Crenshaw, the high school AllAmerican quarterback who exemplifies the glory days of Spartan ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - christinejoseph - LibraryThing
football hero returns 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 ... Read full review
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Bleachers by John Grisham is a very detailed story on the lives of former high school football players in Messina. Grisham brings the reader into thinking he or she is a part of one of the magical team coach Eddie Rake had guided through his years at Messina High School. The characters are easy to relate to in their reliving of the glory days, because I am in high school and im living them now. Bleachers is written in accordance to Grisham’s high school years playng football, so the details are very descriptive, making it seem as if you were suited up next to him on the field.
The setting is a small town called Messina, and the time is early twenty first century. Many former Spartan players come back to Messina and are waiting for ledgendary coach Eddie Rake to pass away. Among those that have returned is Neely Crenshaw. Neely was an All-American quarterback for the Spartans in the 80’s and is making his first return back to his hometown since his number nineteen was retired. Many of the former players meet every night at Rake Field to relive the glory days of their high school careers. With Eddie Rake about to pass away, the players discuss his “unusual” coaching methods and struggle with the question every former Spartan asks himself: Do I love or hate Eddie Rake? This novel presents the consequences when winning becomes everything to everyone.
Grisham writes so that the reader will feel as if they are up in the bleachers of Rake Field hearing the old stories of the greatness of Messina football. Grisham wants the reader to be split in Neely’s decision whether he loves or hates Coach Rake. This book is divided up into days of the week leading up to the death of famous coach Eddie Rake. Bleachers makes me realize that the glory days are fading and that no matter how hard it is now, I will miss these days.
John Grisham uses a lot of literary elements in Bleachers, but his vivid description tops all. Grisham writes, “The road stopped in front of an immense gate of brick and wrought iron that announced the presence of Rake Field, and beyond the gate was a chain-link fence that encircled the hallowed ground.” Grisham describes football as more than a sport. It was almost a religion to the 10,000 people in Messina. The reader is captured in the magical moments of high school football when Grisham describes Paul Coffey’s play by play color analysis of the ‘87 championship game. Grisham states, “Clock is ticking, ten-oh-five left in the third quarter. Messina is ten yards from a touchdown and a thousand miles from a state title. First and goal, Crenshaw drops back to pass, a draw to Mabry, who’s hit in the backfield, shakes loose, scoots wide right. There’s nobody there! he’s gonna score! He’s gonna score! And Marcus Mabry dives in for the first Messina touchdown! Touchdown Spartans! The comeback has begun!” The description from Paul Coffey really captures the emotions of high school football. Grisham uses unbelievable details as he conveys his own high school playing days.
I normally do not enjoy reading, but Bleachers really caught my interest from the beginning and kept it throughout the entire book. It has really opened my eyes to the fact that we will not be in high school forever, so we should cherish the times we have with our teammates, classmates, and playing the sports we love. Bleachers is an extremely well written book and I would absolutely recommend it to anyone who enjoys the ups and downs of high school athletics.
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Awsome awsome stuff.Im beyond excited when it comes to this one realy brought back the fell of that type of couch who might have seemed tough but was actually a softy inside...