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edition:Paperback
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category: Fiction
published: Aug 2016
ISBN:9781770899421

The Best Kind of People

by Zoe Whittall

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literary, family life
0 of 5
0 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $22.95
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
category: Fiction
published: Aug 2016
ISBN:9781770899421
Description

National Bestseller

2016 Scotiabank Giller Prize finalist

National Post 99 Best Books of the Year

Indigo Best Book of the Year

Globe and Mail Best 100 Books of 2016

What if someone you trusted was accused of the unthinkable?

George Woodbury, an affable teacher and beloved husband and father, 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 wrestling 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 living 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 issues of loyalty, truth, and the meaning of happiness through the lens of an all-American family on the brink of collapse.

About the Author
Zoe Whittall is the author of numerous novels and poetry collections, including the critically acclaimed The Best Kind of People, Holding Still For As Long As Possible and Bottle Rocket Hearts, a Globe and Mail Best Book of 2007. She has a master's degree from the University of Guelph. Originally from Quebec, she has lived in Toronto, Ontario, since 1997. For more information, visit www.zoewhittall.com.
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Contributor Notes

Zoe Whittall is the author of The Best Ten Minutes of Your Life (2001), The Emily Valentine Poems (2006), and Precordial Thump (2008), and the editor of Geeks, Misfits, & Outlaws (2003). Her debut novel Bottle Rocket Hearts (2007) made the Globe and Mail Top 100 Books of the Year and CBC Canada Reads’ Top Ten Essential Novels of the Decade. Her second novel Holding Still for as Long as Possible (2009) won a Lambda Literary Award and was an American Library Association Stonewall Honor Book. Her writing has appeared in the Walrus, the Believer, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, Fashion, and more. She has also worked as a writer and story editor on the TV shows Degrassi and Schitt’s Creek. Born in the Eastern Townships of Quebec, she has an MFA from the University of Guelph and lives in Toronto.

Awards
  • Short-listed, Scotiabank Giller Prize
Editorial Reviews

…exquisitely emotional…

— Owen Sound Sun Times

An astounding portrait of a character by omission.

— The National Post

The Best Kind of People is all-of-a-piece and well worth the read not only for what it adds to the conversation about accusation and rape, but also for the pleasure it offers to those who like a good story.

— Hamilton Review of Books

The Best Kind of People is a story with so many shades of grey that you won’t know what to believe but you’re guaranteed to feel almost every emotion possible while reading this new novel.

— Niagara This Week

Toronto author Zoe Whittall’s new novel The Best Kind of People is the best kind of book — it’s got a compelling story characters readers will recognize and come to love and writing that makes it effortless to turn page after page.

— Vancouver Sun

…fast-paced…but never melodramatic.

— Maclean's

Nuanced to the end, Whittall’s novel achieves something that’s rare in real-life cases of sexual violence. She gives a voice to the ones we never hear from: those who are collateral damage.

— Chatelaine

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 — which, for the record, is one of my favourite novels.

— Kate Harding, author of Asking For It: The Alarming Rise of Rape Culture — and What We Can Do About It

With incredibly rare nuance, sensitivity, and insight, Zoe Whittall takes us deep into our contemporary conversation around sexual violence and shines a vital spotlight on the individuals and communities that live in its long shadow. Whittall’s undisputed talent as a writer shines, as does her understanding into the complexity of our sympathies, our morality, and our humanity. With The Best Kind of People, Whittall has created an urgent and timely document, one that asks us to reflect on how we can best serve survivors of abuse and best support all of those who exist in its aftermath. 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

Whittall places the reader right at the centre of their pain. It’s the best depiction of female suffering I’ve read since Jane Smiley eloquently tackled sexual abuse in A Thousand Acres.

— The Toronto Star

Zoe Whittall's novel gets into the hearts and minds of an ordinary family forced to confront the monstrous. There are no heroes and no villains in this world — there are only people grappling with guilt and truth. This novel is a timely discussion of what we owe those who abuse and those who are targeted in our communities. It's a compelling exploration of the ways a crime implicates all of us.

— Kaitlyn Greenidge, author of We Love You, Charlie Freeman

The jury found Zoe Whittall’s The Best Kind of People urgent and timely, nuanced and brave. This gripping story challenges how we hear women and girls, and dissects the self-hypnosis and fear that prevent us from speaking disruptive truth. With subversive precision and solid veracity, Whittall calls into question pervasive forms of silence and acquiescence.

— 2016 Scotiabank Giller Prize Jury

Heartbreaking and complex, The Best Kind of People offers no easy answers. This is a masterly exploration of the damage an entire community incurs when the secret at the heart of its most perfect family detonates.

— Lynn Coady author of The Antagonist

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Other Titles by Zoe Whittall

Bottle Rocket Hearts

Bottle Rocket Hearts

edition:eBook
also available: Paperback
tagged : literary
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