I remember some years ago when a high school teacher was accused of sexual impropriety with one of his students. It was a small town, and everyone (with or without knowledge of any evidence) had an opinion about his guilt or innocence. He was eventually exonerated, as the girl admitted she was unhappy over a grade. All charges were dropped, but his life was ruined. He and his family left town.
I was reminded of this incident as I read this book about a high school teacher accused of a similar crime. The impact of the accusation on the teacher, his wife and children, and friends, is the topic of this book. No one is left untouched by the shock of such a serious accusation.
As the book describes the events over time, we learn about the trauma experienced by the people who know him. No one is left untouched, whether they are supporting him or convinced of his guilt. The teacher is mostly out of the picture, being held in custody. It is the people around him who are left to cope with the fallout of the accusation.
The question of his innocence or guilt is left late in the book, and it almost doesn’t matter, The damage is done and cannot be undone.
Thanks to Netgalley for ARC.