Our Best Intentions by Vibhuti Jain
Vibhuti Jain’s compelling, character-driven novel introduces readers to a fresh new voice in fiction. In the affluent suburb of Kitchewan, Babur Singh believes he has done everything possible to ensure a bright future for his daughter Angela, a talented swimmer. One afternoon Angela stumbles onto a shocking scene – Henry McCleary, her friend’s brother, has been stabbed and left bleeding on the school campus. The blame falls to a young girl with a troubled home life, one of the school’s only Black students. Henry’s wealthy parents immediately unleash their social connections to garner public sympathy and gain control of the narrative. Before they know what’s happening, Angela and her father find themselves at the center of controversy as the community divides itself along lines of race and class. Book clubs will want to make room on their spring reading schedule for this arresting debut, a thought-provoking reflection on opportunity and belonging.
Reviewed by Mary Kinser, collection development librarian, Whatcom County Library System
(Originally published in Bellingham Alive April 2023 issue.)