Gateway Gazette

From My Bookshelf: Zoe Whitall

By Lynn Willoughby

The Best Kind of People ~ Zoe Whitall

The man you know as your husband/father has been arrested for sexual assault.  Prior to this he had been voted “Teacher of the Year”, many times.  How do you handle it?
This story is developed through the eyes of the many people who thought they knew George Woodbury – his wife, his daughter, his son, his students, his collegues, his neighbours.  The tension swings back and forth.  He is “innocent until proven guilty;”   “nobody lies about these things”,  “he is being framed.”  Where do you stand?
“…Zoe Whitall explores issues of loyalty, truth and the meaning of happiness through the lens of an all-American family on the brink of collapse.” ~ Amazon.  I HOPE this is not a typical family for all kinds of reasons.
Aside from the poor writing, the cliched characters, the inconsistencies and the non-editing, this story is just not handled well.  I didn’t like anyone in this family or feel much empathy for them.  And the ending – well it felt to me like the author just decided to wrap it up.  It was very inadequate and unsatisfying.
The reason I read this novel was because it was short listed for the Giller Prize.  I will have to find a different standard in the future.
  • The Middle Ground
  • Bottle Rocket Hearts
……………and several others

Related Articles

Leave a Reply