Reservation Road tells the story of two ordinary families facing an extraordinary crisis - a book that reads like a thriller but opens up a world rich with psychological nuance and emotional wisdom.
At the close of a beautiful summer day near the quiet Connecticut town where they live, the Learner family - Ethan and Grace, their children, Josh and Emma - stop at a gas station on their way home from a concert. Josh Learner, lost in a ten-year-old's private world, is standing at the edge of the road when a car comes racing around the bend. He is hit and instantly killed. The car speeds away.
From this moment forward, Reservation Road becomes a harrowing countdown to the confrontation between two very different men. The hit-and-run driver is a small-town lawyer named Dwight Arno, a man in desperate need of a second chance. Dwight is also the father of a ten-year-old boy, who was asleep in the car the night Josh Learner was killed.
In a gripping narrative woven from the voices of Ethan, Dwight, and Grace, Reservation Road tells the story of two ordinary families facing an extraordinary crisis--a book that reads like a thriller but opens up a world rich with psychological nuance and emotional wisdom. Reservation Road explores the terrain of grief even as it astonishes with unexpected redemption: powerful and wrenching and impossible to put down.
A triumph...character-driven as it is, it reads like a thriller, swift and complete. - The New York Times Book Review
A poignant thriller...the novel's resolution is quietly breathtaking. - Vanity Fair
Haunting .... A powerful and affecting novel. - The New York Times
A dark and irresistible miracle: a heartbreaking thriller. - Los Angeles Times
A deeply moving, darkly satisfying novel. - The Boston Globe
So beautifully written and compelling that you can't will yourself to put it down. - The Denver Post
Thrums with suspense and moral ambiguity...This is one of those rare-very rare-novels that you don't so much read a inhabit and that makes everyday life seem altogether mysterious. - Entertainment Weekly
This book possesses a conclusion of such power that it would be a literary crime to reveal it. - USA Today
John Burnham Schwartz is the bestselling author of five novels, including Northwest Corner, The Commoner, and Reservation Road, which was made into a film based on his screenplay. His books have been translated into twenty languages, and he has done extensive screen and television writing for the major Hollywood studios, including as screenwriter of HBO Films' The Wizard of Lies starring Robert De Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer, for which he was nominated for a 2018 Writers Guild of America Award for Outstanding Writing. Literary Director of the Sun Valley Writers' Conference, he lives in Brooklyn with his wife, writer Aleksandra Crapanzano, and their son Garrick.