"Leslie Vryenhoek has written a spellbinding story about female friendship, family relationships, love, deceit, debt and gifts, and you should read it. Read Jean Graham's review in the Northeast Avalon Times (PDF)
"Vryenhoek manages to weave a deep and engaging novel out of money matters, though she makes it about more than that. ... the connections between all these people over the decades yield surprising insights and remarkable depth, culminating in a really wonderful story. Vryenhoek?s prose is bright and accessible, the novel fast-paced and compelling, and there is a startling originality to all of it." Kerry Clare's review at Pickle Me This
"The writing in Leslie Vryenhoek's debut novel, Ledger of the Open Hand, is flowing and descriptive, with some images so beautiful you know they've come from the mind of a serious wordsmith." Read Kerri Cull's review in The Overcast
"With Scrabble Lessons, Leslie Vryenhoek becomes a new literary voice that's helping to revitalize the Canadian short story." Dave Williamson, writing in the Winnipeg Free Press (Dec. 19, 2009) - Read the review
"Some authors show you well-rounded lives in their stories; Leslie Vryenhoek takes you inside the skin." Samuel Thomas Martin
"I stopped breathing. Shocked, without a trace of cheap thrill. Then I felt only gratitude for the creative leap." Jim Bartley's review in the Globe and Mail.
"With each poem functioning as an integral relic in the suitcase that is the collection, Gulf itself become a sanctuary for the uprooted. Entirely salient, Vryenhoek's debut leaves an impression of permanence in a culture of temporality." Whitney Moran, writing at ArtsEast.
Awards & Nominations
Longlisted, International DUBLIN Literary Award (2017) for Ledger of the Open Hand
Finalist, Winterset Award (2016) for Ledger of the Open Hand
In stories that variously explore the isolating loneliness of being human, Leslie Vryenhoek's spare, elegant prose entertains, shocks and surprises.~ Joan Clark, author of An Audience of Chairs
"Scrabble Lessons" ...feels as natural and intimate as a kitchen-table monologue, and yet close reading reveals an intricately elliptical structure.... The resilience, elasticity and playfulness of words, and their ability to bolster us in the face of illness and death, constitute the heart of the story. ~ Richard Cumyn, The Antigonish Review
Rich, visceral images; realistic and convincing dialogue. ...it has the mysterious complexity of a true short story. ~ Judges comments, Eden Mills Writers' Festival Literary Competition, 2007