“A quietly powerful story, at times harrowing but ultimately a joy to read.” – Kirkus Reviews
Named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2012!
Set in 1940s Appalachia, The Secret Sense of Wildflower tells the story of Louisa May “Wildflower” McAllister whose life has been shaped around the recent death of her beloved father in a sawmill accident. While her mother hardens in her grief, Wildflower and her three sisters must cope with their loss themselves, as well as with the demands of daily survival. Despite these hardships, Wildflower has a resilience that is forged with humor, a love of the land, and an endless supply of questions to God. When Johnny Monroe, the town’s teenage ne’er-do-well, sets his sights on Wildflower, she must draw on the strength of her relations, both living and dead, to deal with his threat.
With prose as lush and colorful as the American South, The Secret Sense of Wildflower is a powerful and poignant southern novel, brimming with energy and angst, humor and hope. Read more here.
Listen to chapter one: click play button below.
About Susan . . .
- Finalist for the 2011 Linda Flowers Literary Award
- Finalist for the Women Playwrights’ Initiative Competition
- Finalist for the Robert Ruark Short Fiction Contest
Susan Gabriel writes with passion, humor and insight about Southerners, both wise and wounded; teens, both ordinary and odd; and the people who love them, both explicit and unconscious. While she at times has written plays, poetry and nonfiction (see her blog), Susan primarily writes southern fiction and short stories.
Secrets figure prominently in Susan’s work, secrets we keep from ourselves and the ones we keep from others, secrets we dare not tell and the ones we must reveal in order to survive.
Susan recognizes few labels other than “human” (“I’m a writer, not a genre” she says) and delights in the feedback from her readers from Portugal to Portland, New York to New Zealand. Read more here.