Review: The Best Kind of People






Synopsis

Shortlisted for the Giller Prize • A local schoolteacher is arrested for a heinous crime, leaving his family to wrestle with the possibility of his guilt in this exquisite novel about loyalty, truth, and happiness.

The Woodburys cherish life in the affluent, bucolic suburb of Avalon Hills, Connecticut. George is a beloved science teacher at the local prep school, a hero who once thwarted a gunman, and his wife, Joan, is a hardworking ER nurse. They have brought up their children in this thriving town of wooded yards and sprawling lakes.

Then one night a police car pulls up to the Woodbury home and George is charged with sexual misconduct—with students from his daughter’s school. As he sits in prison awaiting trial and claiming innocence—is it possible?—Joan vaults between denial and rage as friends and neighbors turn cold. Their daughter, seventeen-year-old Sadie, is a popular high school senior who becomes a social outcast—and finds refuge in an unexpected place. Her brother, Andrew, a lawyer in New York, returns home to support the family, only to confront unhappy memories from his past. A writer tries to exploit their story, while an unlikely men’s rights activist group attempts to recruit Sadie for their cause.

Provocative and unforgettable, The Best Kind of People reveals the cracks along the seams of even the most perfect lives and the unraveling of an American family.
Praise from Canada for The Best Kind of People.

“[Zoe] Whittall’s intuitive understanding of human nature makes The Best Kind of People a gripping novel, one that shines a light on family dynamics under extreme pressure.”—The Vancouver Sun

“Whittall’s undisputed talent as a writer shines, as does her understanding into the complexity of our sympathies, our morality, and our humanity. With incredible empathy and undeniable skill this book is sure to spark much-needed dialogue, vital debate, and richly deserved acclaim.”—Stacey May Fowles, author of Infidelity

“The Best Kind of People examines the effects of rape culture on an entire community with rare nuance and insight. Every character is fully rounded, flawed, and achingly human. It puts me in mind of a twenty-first-century Ordinary People.”—Kate Harding, author of Asking for It

“This may just be Whittall’s breakout novel, and deservedly so.”—The Winnipeg Review

“Taut, compassionate and clever.”—Toronto Star



Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

The Best Kind of People by Zoe Whittall is a stunning piece of fiction. It had the same intensity as the To Kill a Mockingbird and as The Crucible. All three novels were based on false accusations that built up into a nightmare. Destroying many lives. While it wasn’t as bad as The Crucible it certainly held the same kind of trouble. 

Watching how a man went from town hero to a victim of lies. Lies that were set up by young girls. Their lies brought a once closely held family to the ruins. A father sent off to jail, a wife feeling wary about her husband, and a daughter trying to deal with the torments at school. Zoe Whittall shows us, readers, that even the best kind of people can fall victim to cruelty and lies. George Woodbury a fellow teacher, husband, and father is wrongly accused of raping innocent girls. Yet these girls were far from innocent…they were the tormentors. Bullying, drugs, coming out, and marriage are just some of the strong themes present inside this captivating novel. It all felt so real. The pressure built to a point that I felt like all were drowning along with the victim. The whole Woodbury family were victims to slander. Sad, heartbreaking, and believable. This is a must read for all. I recommend this page-turning tale to readers everywhere. 

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Review: The Significant Other by Nicole Strycharz 

Synopsis:

Adam: I swore off men years ago to protect myself. I don’t trust guys. Guys break hearts, they take, and they don’t give like women do. That’s why for the past ten years I’ve entrusted my heart to a tattooed, multi-hair colored, vixen named Trix. Trixie is my safe haven. She doesn’t just back up my voice in our band she backs me in life. 
Sadly, I don’t reciprocate like I should. My phobia of PDA and my over-protectiveness are hard to put up with. It might be because I need more than I let on. More than I would dare to admit to. 
We moved to NY to grow as a band but then I met ‘him’…our boss; a sexy as hell, bad boy with a convict’s past and a talent for breaking men and women’s hearts alike. He’s bad news… An urban beast with too much edge and he’s prowling around my comfort-zone relationship. 
Now I’m not sure who my significant other is… my girl or the man determined to remind me who I really am and what I truly want. 

Trixie: Coming to the city was our ticket to fame. It was me and Adam against the odds of notoriety but since we arrived in the Big Apple, we’ve also been made aware how small our bubble of safe love is. 
I know what my boyfriend probably hasn’t admitted to himself… that I’m not enough for him. We both are just too chicken to do anything about it. 
New York is changing us. The people we meet here, the emotions we face, even our music… and if there is anything you learn from these streets, it’s this… 
Traffic and life, they both wait for no one. You have to go with the flow, ride the current, and keep up the pace. Both Adam’s love and mine is being tested, or it’s about to end. 
Hopefully we can figure it all out. Oh and add that to my list of to do’s like keeping my twin away from a dangerous drug lord, struggling not to fall from a stranger, keeping the band from falling apart and not becoming a bumbling idiot in front of our criminally hot boss. Yeah…criminal…

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Significant Other by Nicole Strycharz is another brilliant masterpiece. Striaght and the LGBT community will love this book. Once more, I got another taste of the heart and soul the writer puts into her words. Emotionally, tugging on my heart strings. I cried, I laughed, and I fell in love. Frustrating, stunning, and well-told. The entire tale was nothing but epic. 

Nicole Strycharz created her first novel featuring a gay couple. A man who likes other men. That was until he had his heart broken. Then, he went and fell for Trixie. A female singer. But despite her loving him…something just was missing. Both knew it. Adam just didn’t want to face it and neither did Trixie. Adam is a sexy hot alpha male who easily gets under readers skin, like he did to me. His has a big heart. I noticed that from the beginning. Adam hid himself with Trixie…keeping his heart guarded. Until, they meet their new boss. A boss that is more alpha than Adam, sexy hot too, and has a thing for Adam…

Trixie is a submissive kind of woman. Made her great for Adam. But she wasn’t meant for him. That’s thought love. She knew Adam’s real love and it wasn’t for her. Trixie too, has the biggest heart anyone has read in fiction. Despite her sexy tough looks, lies a sweet engaging woman looking for love. Trixie finds love but it fails…then she has a sister that made me want to hug Trixie. Trixie goes out and beyond for her sister. A sister who will never change…

Overall, The Significant Other is a book I can easily see made into a movie for 18-year-olds and above due to its content. Sex, drugs, and other things. Life is messy, complicated, and unfair. I really enjoyed this novel, because it brought out real life issues that people battle with each day. Believable, intriguing, and well-written. Nicole Strycharz has done it again with her latest piece. I applaud Nicole for her astounding job in creating three-dimensional characters whose stories I’ll never forget. So readers, yes, I highly recommend this talented writer’s book, The Significant Other to all.