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The Best Kind of People

byZoe Whittall(Goodreads Author)
A timely novel about an accusation against a beloved schoolteacher and the repercussions on his loved ones, exploring issues of loyalty, truth, and the meaning of happiness through the lens of an all-American family on the brink of collapse.

George Woodbury, a celebrated teacher, is arrested for sexual impropriety at a prestigious prep school. His wife, Joan, vaults between denial and rage as the community she loved turns on her. Their daughter, Sadie, a popular over-achieving high school senior, becomes a social pariah. Their son, Andrew, assists in his father’s defense, while grappling with his own unhappy memories of his teen years. A local author tries to exploit their story, while an unlikely men’s rights activist attempts to get Sadie onside their cause. With George locked up, how do the members of his family pick up the pieces and keep on with their lives? How do they defend someone they love while wrestling with the possibility of his guilt?

With exquisite emotional precision, award-winning author Zoe Whittall explores the irrevocable damage of an accusation—not on the man accused, but on the family who have built their lives around him.(less)

Hardcover, 448 pages
Expected publication: September 19th 2017 by Ballantine Books (first published August 27th 2016)
0399182217 (ISBN13: 9780399182211)
Edition Language
Connecticut(United States)

What a thought provoking novel “The Best Kind of People” by Zoe Whittall is. I appreciate the many contemporary issues in today’s society, that Zoe Whittall had written about. I had so many emotions when I was reading this book. The genres for the book are Fiction and Adult Fiction. I also feel there is a dash and question of some mystery in here as well. The timeline of this book is  set mostly in the present, and goes to the past only to explain relevant issues of the characters or storyline. “The novel takes place in an affluent town of Avalon Hills, a suburb of Connecticut, and also in the city.
The author describes the characters as complicated and complex. The Woodbury’s are an affluent family in the small community of Avalon Hills. George, is a husband, father, and Science teacher at a private school, where he is known as a hero for stopping a man with a gun pointed at his daughter. Joan is a wife, mother and is an emergency room nurse. Sadie is the daughter, that still has memories of the attack in school, when she was little, but now is seventeen, and making plans for college. Andrew is the older son, now an attorney , and lives with his partner in the city.
Everything seems fine, until suddenly it isn’t. George is arrested for inappropriate sexual behavior that supposedly occurred during a skiing trip with his students. Several girls have made accusations.
My first thought is that with our legal system, isn’t one innocent until proven guilty? Suddenly everything changes for the family, and not only is the father on trial, but the media is involved, and the whole family seems to be on trial as well. There are twists and turns in this story.
I appreciate that the author describes contemporary problems such as sexual abusers and the effects of their actions on their families, the victim, and the victim’s families.
Also discussed is recreational use of drugs, sexual freedom in high schools, homosexuality, lack of adequate parenting and providing a role model for children, and the consequences of the media today.
The author writes about family, support, love, and hope. I would recommend this emotionally charged  book for readers that like to question things. I received a copy of this Advanced Reading Copy  for my honest review.

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