Synopses & Reviews
From celebrated authors Amy Hempel and Jill Ciment writing as A.J. Rich, a smart, thrilling, sexy, and emotionally riveting novel of psychological suspense about an accomplished woman involved with a man who proves to be an imposter.
Morgan Prager, at age thirty, is completing her thesis on victim psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Manhattan. She is newly engaged to Bennett, a seductive but possessive and secretive man. She returns from class one day to find Bennett mauled to death, and her dogs — a Great Pyrenees and two pit bulls she has rescued — covered in blood. Bewildered and devastated that her dogs could have committed such violence, she worries that she might suffer from one of the syndromes she studies: pathological altruism, when selfless acts do more damage than good.
When Morgan tries to locate Bennett’s parents to tell them about their son’s hideous death, she discovers he was not the man he said he was. Everything he has told her — where he was born, where he lives and works — was a lie. In fact, he has several fiancées, and fits the clinical definition of a sociopath. And then, one by one, these other women are murdered. Suddenly Morgan’s research into Bennett takes on the urgency of survival: to stay alive, she must find out who is killing the women Bennett was closest to.
Unsettling and highly suspenseful, this is a brilliant collaboration between two outstanding writers.
“A fascinating premise, a blindsided narrator, dangeroussurprises, and dogs. What more can you ask for?? The Hand That Feeds Youis an unnervingly credible story about the most intimate deception.”
"A.J. Rich's The Hand That Feeds You is mesmerizing and terrifying—a smart, compelling thriller with the kind of suspense that burns calories while you sit perfectly still with breath held. It is also a wise wealth of information about numerous topics: dogs, forensics, the human psyche and perhaps most satisfying of all, it is an exploration of love, grief and compassion."
“Extremely interesting.…This slim, nasty thriller is hard to put down.” Kirkus
“Rich’s gripping psychological thriller addresses our basic fears about becoming a victim.” Library Journal
“Masterstorytellers Amy Hempel and Jill Ciment, writing as Rich, pose provocative questions: Do nice people attract murderers? Can we ever really know anyone? Inspired by the betrayal of a friend in real life, this riveting read’s masterly prose style sets it apart.” O, The Oprah Magazine
About the Author
Amy Hempel is the author of four collections of stories: Reasons to Live, At the Gates of the Animal Kingdom, Tumble Home,
and The Dog of the Marriage.
Her Collected Stories
was published in 2006, and was named one of the New York Times
Ten Best Books of the Year. She has won many awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, an inaugural USA Foundation Fellowship, and the PEN/Malamud Award for the Short Story. She teaches writing at Bennington College and the University of Florida, and is a founding board member of two dog rescue nonprofit organizations: The Deja Foundation (DejaFoundation.org), and Morgan’s Place, a rescue in Connecticut. She lives in Gainesville, Florida, and New York City.
Jill Ciment is the author of Small Claims, a collection of stories and novellas; The Law of Falling Bodies, Teeth of the Dog, The Tattoo Artist, Heroic Measures, and Act of God, novels; and Half a Life, a memoir. She has been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a NEA Japan Fellowship Prize, two New York State Fellowships for the Arts, the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Ciment is a professor at the University of Florida. She lives in Gainesville, Florida, and Brooklyn, New York.