Thursday, January 22, 2015

BLOG TOUR: The Cottage Park Puzzle by Richard M. Siddoway

Cottage Park Puzzle blog tour


When two teenagers are found beaten in the quiet town of Cottage Park and another boy is standing over them holding a baseball bat, it seems like a simple task to convict the perpetrator. There’s just one problem: he’s autistic. This poignant tale of one town’s journey to forgiveness and love will stay with you long after you've finished reading.


Richard M. Siddoway was born in Salt Lake City and reared in Bountiful, Utah. He was a professional educator for over 45 years. In 1994, he was asked by Governor Leavitt to create the nation’s first state-wide virtual high school—the Electronic High School—which served students nation-wide. Richard served three terms in the Utah House of Representatives; the last two years he served as Speaker Pro Tempore of the House. He has served as a Bishop and Stake President in the Bountiful Utah Val Verda Stake. He and his wife, Janice, have served missions in Nauvoo, Illinois, and Taylorsville, Utah. He is the author of ten books including the New York Times best seller—The Christmas Wish which was made into a movie starring Debbie Reynolds, Neil Patrick Harris, and Naomi Watts.


I found this to be a very thought-provoking book.  The story follows the reactions of a number of characters to the beating of two young men.  Corky Rogers who is severely autistic was found with the bat in his hands and it causes a great deal of furor.  The boy's parents are heart-broken and even enraged and plan to sue the school district, principal, superintendent, as well as Corky's parents.  An even bigger question is why no one saw it coming.  Corky doesn't communicate and so the only witness who can speak is the principal's son, Scott.  But things aren't always what they seem and Cottage Park has a difficult journey ahead of them in coming to terms with what did and did not happen.

I really liked seeing the events from multiple perspectives, it gave the story a more complete feel as I considered the different reactions. For a tender story of love and forgiveness set against a background of anger and suspicion I can recommend this one.

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