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"WONDER DRUG is both a first-rate medical thriller and the searing account of a forgotten American tragedy. Drawing on six years of groundbreaking research and guided by a keen eye for the indelible detail and an unwavering moral conviction, Jennifer Vanderbes has produced a shocking saga of pharmaceutical malpractice."
— Patrick Radden Keefe, New York Times
bestselling author of author Empire of Pain
"A tale of scientific detective work, corporate corruption on a grand scale, and human resilience in the face of repudiation and tragedy. This is narrative nonfiction at its most compelling."
Margot Lee Shetterly, New York Times
bestselling author of Hidden Figures

"A powerful and deeply reported book - Vanderbes’s dogged investigation has finally exposed the true scale of this public health catastrophe, giving us an important story that honors unsung victims and heroes while blowing the lid off decades of cover-up.”
Charles Graeber, New York Times

bestselling author ofThe Good Nurse

“Vanderbes’s thorough investigative work and her lucid prose bring to life a little-known American tragedy. WONDER DRUG is a compelling read and reminds us why regulatory scrutiny of new drugs matters.”

Abraham Verghese, New York Times

bestselling author of Covenant of Water


"Jennifer Vanderbes’s WONDER DRUG is an utterly engrossing, thrilling and horrifying look at both a shocking episode in the history of Big Pharma, and at the intersection of medicine, profit, and government bureaucracy. Vanderbes brings a novelist’s skill to the extensive archival work she’s done, creating a stunning, immersive account of a medical scandal."
Phil Klay, National Book Award

winning author of Redeployment
"Meticulously researched and emotionally powerful, WONDER DRUG is a must- read for anyone seeking to understand the far-reaching impact of the thalidomide scandal. Jennifer Vanderbes uncovers layers of corporate negligence, government inaction, greed, and deception, shedding light on the devastating consequences. WONDER DRUG is not only a page turner, but a much-needed call for accountability and justice--an essential addition to our understanding of medical history."
Meghan O'Rourke, New York Times
bestselling author of The Invisible Kingdom
"A novelistic investigation of the shocking story of thalidomide in the U.S. In a wide-ranging, thoroughly researched, and suspenseful account, novelist Vanderbes creates a compelling cast of heroes and villains… The author weaves the various strands of her riveting tale together with aplomb... A significant work about a horrifying example of widespread pharmaceutical negligence."
KIRKUS, *starred* review

"In this exhaustively reported look at the reckless use of the sedative thalidomide, prescribed for everything from insomnia to nausea during pregnancy, Vanderbes practices "show, don't tell" journalism at its best... Vanderbes makes a complex and important story understandable... This is a medical must-read."

BOOKLIST, *starred* review

"In this mind-boggling horror story of pharmaceutical malfeasance, journalist and novelist Vanderbes profiles one of the most notorious drugs in history: thalidomide...A deeply researched and chilling must-read."
PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY, *starred* review
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