Susan Rivers biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Susan Rivers
Photo: Tasha Thomas

Susan Rivers

Susan Rivers Biography

Susan Rivers was awarded the Julie Harris Playwriting Award for Overnight Lows and the New York Drama League Award for Understatements. She is also the recipient of two playwriting grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and has had short fiction published in the Santa Monica Review. In 2007 she earned an MFA in fiction writing from Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina, where she was also awarded a Regional Artist Grant from the Arts and Sciences Council. She currently lives and writes in a small town in upstate South Carolina. The Second Mrs. Hockaday is her first novel.



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Interview

Susan Rivers talks about the true story that inspired her first novel The Second Mrs Hockaday, set in South Carolina during the Civil War.

Voices, an essay by Susan Rivers

In the summer of 2014, I was in the library near my home in rural South Carolina. I was doing research for a book I'd been trying to write on and off (mostly off ). It can be a hellish experience for a writer when no amount of work on a project pays off in terms of the story taking flight, and that was the case with my draft about a middle-aged woman living on a farm during the Civil War. I seemed unable to locate the nexus of the story, what Turkish novelist Orhan Pamuk so aptly refers to as "the secret center." On

that July day, however, locked in the tiny, stifling History Room, I stumbled across the summary of an 1865 inquest. As soon as I read it, I knew this was a story begging to be told in novel form. A Confederate soldier who had been away from his teenaged wife for four years arrived home at war's end to confront rumors that his bride had become pregnant while he was away. It was alleged that she had given birth to a son who had been killed and buried on their farm. The baby's remains were unearthed, and the angry husband pushed to have his wife indicted for murder. The young woman refused to speak about the baby or to...

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Books by this Author

Books by Susan Rivers at BookBrowse
The Second Mrs. Hockaday jacket
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All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Susan Rivers but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Tara Conklin

    Tara Conklin

    Tara Conklin was born on St. Croix in the US Virgin Islands and raised in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. She is a graduate of Yale University, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and New York University School of Law. Most... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Second Mrs. Hockaday

    Try:
    The House Girl
    by Tara Conklin

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    Hannah Crafts

    Hannah Crafts lived in the mid 1850s and is believed to be a runaway slave from N. Carolina. This recently discovered manuscript, "The Bondwoman's Narrative," is believed to be the first novel written by a female ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Second Mrs. Hockaday

    Try:
    The Bondwoman's Narrative
    by Hannah Crafts

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