Sunday, October 31, 2021

Book Review: "Doubting Thomas" by Matthew Clark Davison

Matthew Clark Davison's debut novel, Doubting Thomas, is beautifully written and thought-provoking.

Thomas is an openly gay elementary school teacher at a progressive private school in Portland, Oregon. In a school and a city where many kids have same-sex parents, Thomas’ sexuality is far from an issue—it’s an asset to many, and one the school boasts proudly.

Until the day he is accused of inappropriately touching a male student, an accusation he’s ultimately cleared of. But the damage is done. He is forced to resign from the job he loves and is shunned by those who liked him, his every move and every word questioned and overanalyzed.

At the same time Thomas is dealing with the accusations and their aftermath, he is reeling from a recent breakup, and one of his brothers is facing a health crisis. Thomas rallies to support his brother as relationships change and dynamics shift, both within his family and among his friends. He needs to figure out how to chart his future without teaching.

This is a powerful story of finding yourself, of finding the strength to rebuild your life after it falls apart through no fault of your own. It’s also a story of family dynamics in the midst of crises, of finding allies and discovering those you can depend on. It’s a different story than I expected but it really blew me away.

My thanks to Amble Press for the complimentary (and signed!) copy, and thanks to Davison for the gift of this book.

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