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Why you must read Jenny Harper’s Loving Susie


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She thought she knew her husband, but he’s been keeping a secret … about her.

Scottish politician Susie Wallace is under pressure. She risks censure from her Party for her passionate and outspoken views on arts funding. A charity she’s involved with runs into difficulties. And a certain journalist seems to have it in for her. Susie stumbles across some information that rocks her world but not, apparently, her husband’s – Archie has been in on this particular secret for thirty years. Now Susie wonders if she can trust him at all. Soon, unemployed son Jonathan and successful daughter Mannie begin to feel the fallout too, fracturing the family and leaving Susie increasingly isolated. Troubled by mounting pressure from her family, her Party and the Press, Susie goes into hiding. The Party needs her back for a crucial vote, but more importantly, Archie knows he needs to find his wife quickly if they are to rebuild their relationship and reunite the family.

What type of novel is this?
Contemporary women’s fiction, family relationships.

Who is it aimed at?
Mainly women, who like a great read with big issues and strong relationships that come under threat.

Tell us about Susie and her husband. His name’s Archie, right?
Susie Wallace was a well-known actress. She has a cloud of curly red-gold hair and striking eyes, and she’s a passionate person – passionate about her family, but most of all, a passionate defender of the arts and theatre and a champion of the disadvantaged.

Her husband, Archie Wallace, is a folk/rock musician. He is the antithesis of Susie – he is quiet, thoughtful, balanced. And he can keep secrets – though his life might have been much easier if he’d talked to his wife about the things that are troubling him.

Who else do we need to know more about?
Margaret-Anne Wallace, their daughter, resembles neither of them. She’s a sales manager in the hotel trade, very driven and ambitious, smart, attractive, but restless and easily bored.

Jonathan Wallace, their son, is a graphic designer who has not been able to land a job since he graduated. He’s solid and capable, but right at the moment, very lacking in self esteem.

Have you written any other books that we should read next?
Yes. Face the Wind and Fly is also set just outside of Edinburgh. Wind farm engineer Kate Courtenay is landed with a controversial project near the pretty conservation village where she lives. Her famous novelist husband is nearly twenty years older – even her stepson is older than she is. And she has a difficult teenage son. When she discovers her husband is having an affair, she finds herself drawn to gardener Ibsen Brown. But Ibsen is very opposed to the wind farm she is managing.

Tell us about yourself.
Born in India of Scottish parents, I’ve lived in Scotland for many years. I was a publishing editor of non fiction books, a journalist and a director of a company that produced corporate magazines. I’ve always written. I love family and friends and food. I like walking in the glorious Scottish countryside, and travelling to warm places, especially the southern US in our winter, and India.

Do you have a website? (NB website currently under redesign to make it easier to add links etc!!)

Maybe we should check you out on social media then.

How easily do new storylines come to you? If we give you four random words – Man, Woman, Mexico, Future – can you give us a brief storyline?
Catriona Muirhead was jilted at the altar, but she’s determined not to miss out on the fab honeymoon they’d planned, so she has swept off to Mexico. Her future may look bleak but she’s holding her head high.

She’s not looking for love, but heavens, the novelist in the next bungalow is incredibly attractive – and is very drawn to her. Surely a fling is justifiable in the circumstances? But then Jonas, the man who jilted her, arrives, throwing her world into turmoil again. Which man should she chose? Or does her destiny lie in another direction altogether?

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