Strangers at the Feast

On Thanksgiving Day 2007, as the country teeters on the brink of a
recession, three generations of the Olson family gather. Eleanor and
Gavin worry about their daughter, a single academic, and her newly
adopted Indian child, and about their son, who has been caught in the
imploding real-estate bubble. While the Olsons navigate the tensions and
secrets that mark their relationships, seventeen-year-old Kijo Jackson and
his best friend Spider set out from the nearby housing projects on a
mysterious job. A series of tragic events bring these two worlds ever
closer, exposing the dangerously thin line between suburban privilege
and urban poverty, and culminating in a crime that will change everyone’s

Jennifer Vanderbes masterfully lays bare the fraught lives of this complex
cast of characters and the lengths to which they will go to protect their
families. Strangers at the Feast is at once a heartbreaking portrait of a
family struggling to find happiness and an exploration of the hidden costs
of the American dream.

Published to international acclaim, Jennifer Vanderbes’s first book, Easter
Island, was hailed as “one of those rare novels that appeals equally to
heart, mind, and soul,” by the San Francisco Chronicle. In her second
novel, this powerful writer reaches new heights of storytelling. This page-
turner wrestles with the most important issues of our time—race, class,
and above all else, family. Strangers at the Feast will leave readers
haunted and deeply affected.

"Elegant and insightful and delightfully precise...SRANGERS AT THE FEAST
is a bona-fide delicacy." -John Wray,  author of LOWBOY

"Family conflict, fascinating social commentary, and a riveting plot
converge in Jennifer Vanderbes' stunning STRANGERS AT THE FEAST, a
thriller that also raises large and haunting questions about the meaning of
guilt, innocence, and justice."
-O, The Oprah Magazine  
(read the full review)
Simon & Schuster Video Interview
Leonard Lopate Show Radio Interview