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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
Whose Fault? by Ryan D. Patterson Sr. is an intense portrayal of the rarely talked about the culture of blame. Abbey and Doug are a typically happy couple blessed with two wonderful children. Their marriage and faith are about to be tested when their children perish in a tragic plane crash. Abbey begins to question God about the reason, as their family has always been prayerful and lived their lives according to Christ. There isn’t an answer in this world that is going to be good enough for her. Domestic disturbance follows as Abbey throws dishes against the kitchen walls as a means of coping. They point fingers at each other, holding the other responsible for the deaths of their children. As a deacon, Doug will try to make sense of it all, and make an effort to persuade Abbey to renew her faith.
Whose Fault? is a powerfully emotional tale of love and faith lost and renewed. Ryan D. Patterson Sr. firmly dissects the anatomy of blame as his two main characters look for the flaws of each other and erode the foundation of the life they built together. He establishes the fact that Abbey and Doug cannot reconcile with the idea that their beloved kids are gone, and given that it was accidental, the backlash of blame is insidious. Patterson’s narrative is a brilliant study on the nature of blame as a mechanism to discharge pain and discomfort. It will initiate a reaction in the reader which could make them feel uncomfortable. This is an intense, realistic story that everyone should read. It serves to remind us of pain avoidance, and whether or not we are exercising reasonable behavior in dealing with it.