Strangers and Cousins

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Product Details

Riverhead Books
Publish Date
6.3 X 9.1 X 1.2 inches | 1.1 pounds

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About the Author

Leah Hager Cohen is the author of five works of nonfiction, including Train Go Sorry, and five novels, including The Grief of Others, which was longlisted for the Orange Prize and the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and was a finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. She is the Barrett Professor of Creative Writing at the College of the Holy Cross.


"Cheerful and lively, Cohen's new novel -- set at an anarchic family gathering in rural New York -- packs a lot of themes into its satisfyingly simple frame. As in a Shakespearean comedy, disparate relationships are resolved and familial love prevails."--New York Times Book Review, Editor's Choice

"Cohen's characters are familiar in their failings and lovable in their tender quirks. Her writing style and tone lend a lightweight grace to at-times heavy subject matter... Cohen's gentle philosophizing reminds us that while the past may not even be past, and the future often feels dangerously obscure, the present--bountifully populated by both strangers and cousins--offers its own rewards, if we choose to embrace them."--Bookpage

"Cohen perfectly captures the chaos of a big family event, with all the personalities and baggage that come with the territory, adeptly mixing humor and sentiment to create an intoxicatingly rich story that bursts off the page with life." --Booklist

"[A] serious yet joyous comedy, reminiscent of the Pulitzer-winning Less, as it tackles issues of racism, anti-semitism, zoning, and pollution with a satirical edge. Cohen's demonstration of a modern family, and the hopes it may have, are a triumph and well worth your read."

"An absolute delight. . . A perfect summer novel: funny and tender but also provocative and wise. . .Cohen's ability to acknowledge the agony of that strife in the context of a modern, loving family makes this one of the most hopeful and insightful novels I've read in years." -Ron Charles, The Washington Post

"In even the simplest wedding there is a hint of pageant, a truth that is at once celebrated and subverted in Leah Hager Cohen's luminous new novel. Strangers and Cousins has the old-fashioned feel of a sprawling multi-generational tale even as it is animated by very contemporary ideas about love, marriage and family. A beautiful novel by one of our most gifted and insightful writers." -Ann Packer, New York Times bestselling author of The Dive from Clausen's Pier and The Children's Crusade