“The best way to describe this novel is to call it an ‘extreme’ coming-of-age novel—one that portrays how an eclectic group of young adults from different socioeconomic backgrounds handles a bizarre, rare and extreme situation… In the Company is dark and frightening, but full of lessons about growing up, growing apart, and learning from your erroneous ways.”
Lara Bryn, Lara’s Book Club

…a fast-paced read with a nice narrative twist that creates big drama from small coincidences… making it appeal to readers of both coming-of-age stories and crime thrillers.” [5 star review] - Jeff Fleischer, Foreword Reviews

Read the interview with Leonce Gaiter in Thriller Books Journal

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In the Company of Educated Men - Leonce Gaiter

Lennie cajoles, wheedles and bribes his best friends, Paul and Louisa, both equally adrift post-graduation, to come alongas if to bear witness. He makes them an irresistible offer. He offers to take them along to live a dream.

At first, the journey's a lark, and they continue to see themselves and this country through the prism of their comparatively privileged preconceptions.

Until that one stop in the Heartland that changed everything.

In the Company of Educated Men - Leonce Gaiter

At an Oklahoma gas station, they meet Jesse, a teenager, strangely compelling, seemingly half dangerous, half innocent, and wielding a gun. To Paul and Louisa's horror, it's clear that Lennie is genuinely intrigued by him--despite (or maybe because of) the danger he represents.

Soon after, the group encounters a 10 year-old girl desperate to flee her battling parents.

Three recent Harvard graduates, literally and figuratively adrift in a strange land that happens to be their own country, a teenager with a gun, a little girl seeking respite from a domestic hell
this is the group that fate flings together. It took twenty hears before Lennie could look back, rekindle it, make sense of tit--the terror, the grand betrayals, the blood and the losses.

"In the Company of Educated Men" is his attempt.

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In the Company of Educated Men - Leonce Gaiter

"In the Company of Educated Men" is a first-person tale of a man reckoning with his past. A tense, intimate story of richly drawn, deeply flawed characters who dare to dream that fate has touched them, or fear that it’s abandoned them altogether. As one of the characters says, she once heard a story about a boy who thought he was special.

“He made pretty wings of wax and feathers,” she says, “and flew too close to the sun."

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Leonce Gaiter’s novels include the historical novel, "I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang," and the noir thriller "Bourbon Street." His non-fiction has appeared in The Huffington Post, LA Times, The Washington Post, Salon, NY Times, NY Times Magazine and in national syndication. He has worked professionally in the creative ends of the film, recording, and marketing industries.

More about the author and his writings at