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Best-selling author headlines annual Peace House luncheon

Author Rachel Louise Snyder
Donald Rutledge
Rachel Louise Snyder
Author Rachel Louise Snyder

The Peace House is hosting its annual spring luncheon Thursday featuring best-selling author Rachel Louise Snyder as the keynote speaker.

The book, “No More Bruises,” was named as a New York Times book of the year in 2019. Its author, Rachel Louise Snyder said the book is an examination of what we don’t understand about domestic violence and the way that it can ripple, not just through a family, but a community.

“It also offers, you know, some paths forward, some things that we can do that we're not doing right now,” Snyder said. “I spend a lot of time with abusers, just trying to figure out if it's possible for them to change, what it, what it is like for them to be in a moment of violence. And that was incredibly illuminating for me, and I think is an important part of the book and the conversation.”

Snyder has worked as a journalist for 25 years and has lived around the world writing stories about human rights abuses.

“I always had an attraction to where people, the people who were being failed by systems, or by patriarchy, or by their governments or whatever,” Snyder said.

When she moved back to the U.S. in 2009, she met someone who worked in the domestic violence field who told her about a program that was developed to look at the highest risk indicators of domestic violence homicide and figure out a way to predict it and prevent it. In fact, since the program started, Snyder said there has not been a single death in that area’s caseload.

“And my jaw just dropped,” she said. “I was like, how can you do that? No one really ever sees this take place. So, this just felt like something pulled out of some miraculous future," she said. "And so, I ended up writing about them for the New Yorker. And that became the seed of my book. And I thought, if someone like me, who had traveled the world, who was very attuned to issues of violence against women, if someone like me could miss so much about domestic violence, then there was a real problem. And we needed a bigger venue to hear about it. And that became my book.”

There are still a few tickets available for Thursday’s luncheon, the Peace House’s largest fundraiser of the year. Development Director Sally Tauber said they hope to raise $350,000 to support the services to victims and survivors of interpersonal violence and sexual assault. Find the link to register here.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story had an incorrect spelling of the author's name.