“With a vision as wide as the tall grass prairie and prose as focused as a poem, Anne LeClaire reminds us how love can subvert the hardest and most stubborn of hearts, and that the ties that bind are not easily undone. An honest and tender ache of a story.”

Judith Ryan Hendricks

Author, Bread Alone


The Law of Bound Hearts is a story of family that lingers in the mind even as it confronts the mystery of family and the confounding nature of love, how it frees us and how it binds us. The novel, set in Lake Forest, Illinois and in a seaside town in Massachusetts, is told in the voices of two sisters. It explores the precarious nature of even the strongest of ties and the terrible ease with which we can abandon one another. It is a novel about courage, betrayal and forgiveness that penetrates the very core of love.


One morning while scanning the font page of The New York Times, I saw a photo of two sisters. The cut line identified them as sisters from Pembroke, Massachusetts and one had given the other her kidney and thus saved her life. I immediately got that hair-raising sensation of story recognition. I started to think about sisters and how key they can be in our lives. Siblings are our oldest peers and witnesses. I wondered what would happen if you were estranged from your sister and then learned that she needed a kidney or would die. Of course, once I started, other questions followed. Can we ever truly forgive a loved on who has betrayed us? What are the obligations of family? Must forgiveness be earned or can it be granted, like grace. What does it take to make a wise choice and what is wisdom’s cost? These questions are at the center of the novel.

To order The Law of Bound Hearts, please click here.