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  1. What does hockey and winning mean to the people of Beartown?
  2. Have the club’s leaders (David, Sune, Peter, and the others) prepared the boys to deal with the pressure of winning and losing?
  3. How do issues related to social class affect the people of Beartown and the hockey club?
  4. What does Kira’s role as a working mother, and her job as a lawyer, mean to her?
  5. Peter loves hockey because it demands his all, his everything. What does hockey demand from each of the characters in the book?
  6. There are many different parents and styles of parenting portrayed in the book. Which parents do you think are the most successful at preparing their children for the real world? Why?
  7. Several characters must find the courage to go against the tight-knit Beartown community. What is at stake for each character who does so, and is it worth it for them?
  8. Discuss the difference between male and female roles in the small village of Beartown. What is expected of the girls and women vs. the boys and men?
  9. In the course of the novel, we see that playing on a sports team teaches young people values like loyalty, responsibility, and commitment. But we also see instances of exclusion, aggression, and entitlement. Are their certain behaviors that are rewarded in a sports competition but considered inappropriate in daily life?
  10. At the end of the novel, do you think the tradition of the Beartown Hockey Club continues? Has its fundamental character changed? How do you think it will change going forward?