Ledger of the Open Hand


A sad, funny tale of friendship and families, of debts owed and lives restored. Ledger of the Open Hand crackles with the clarity and purity of voice .... A wonderful, wonderful read.  

~Will Ferguson 

Worlds collide when cautious, small-town Meriel-Claire meets her well-heeled college roommate--the self-assured, charismatic Daneen. The two form an improbable friendship. But as Meriel becomes beholden to her shrewd friend, and as Daneen insinuates herself into Meriel's family, suspicions and deficits start to accumulate. Meriel eventually finds her calling as a debt counsellor.


Straightening out the books for strangers, however, is far easier than reconciling her own complicated relationships. After years of allegiance, family tragedy, and romantic conflict, an astonishing discovery forces Meriel to reconsider the high cost of loyalty.

With wit and remarkable insight, this debut novel takes a fresh look at our tendency to treat love as a balance sheet. 

Michael Crummey named Ledger one of his 2015 Best Books of the Year, calling it a subtle, deeply affecting novel. "A story about friendship, family and debts of all description: financial, emotional, generational, literary. There are a lot of balls in the air here, and Vryenhook juggles them with a professional ease."