Susan's new novel, Paris Was the Place, is on the Amazon Big Fall Books list for fiction, an Indie Next pick and an Elle Magazine Readers Prize Pick. People magazine calls it “a satisfying cassoulet of questions about home, comfort and love, served with a fresh perspective on a dazzling city”.
In Paris Was the Place, Susan offers a beautiful meditation on how much it matters to belong: to a family, to a country, to any one place, and how this belonging can mean the difference in our survival. Willie Pears begins teaching at a center for immigrant girls in Paris all hoping for French asylum. As she learns their stories, the lines between teaching and mothering quickly begin to blur. Willie has fled to Paris to create a new family, and she soon falls for Macon, a passionate French lawyer.
Gita, a young girl at the detention center, becomes determined to escape her circumstances, no matter the cost. And just as Willie is faced with a decision that could have dire consequences for Macon and the future of the center, Luke is taken with a serious, as-yet-unnamed illness, forcing Willie to reconcile with her father and examine the lengths we will go for the people we care about. It’s a story that reaffirms the ties that bind us to one another. The novelist Richard Russo describes Paris Was the Place as “by turns achingly beautiful and brutally unjust, as vividly rendered as its characters, whose joys and struggles we embrace as our own.”