New Reviews – Where the Sun Rises…

Sunrise in Kobane, Syria.

A story of devastating loss and ultimate triumph

“This is a war story unlike any I’ve read. Thoroughly researched with easy to read prose, I was initially intrigued by a story about female soldiers: what makes vibrant young women risk everything by taking up arms and leaving families already decimated by war? As each woman is drawn into the conflict we learn more about them: their culture, their land, their history and yes, why they take up arms. While we learn about how they train and fight, this was not the highlight for me. With each new chapter I was drawn deeper into the lives of these truly courageous women bravely confronting the horrors of ISIS. Together they suffer devastating losses but also experience the deepest love of friendship, sisterhood and sacrifice. The story builds to a tragic climax of seemingly senseless loss that will bring tears to many readers (as it did for me). But the final chapters show us the results of all they suffered, made all the more poignant by the historical truth it’s based on. My life is richer having read this novel. Definitely recommend it!” 

Amazon Customer

“A great account of what the Kurdish women and men achieved against a vile enemy. Not just a book about conflict but the conflicts that these women faced. A book that well documented the human struggles of all wars. I highly recommend it to all modern history buffs.”

Angus McGeachie

No. 3 on the Red List, Coverfly…

Hey guys,

I was excited to see that my book had reached number 3 on Action Manuscript of the month and is Number 4 – Action Manuscript of the year.

This is on coverfly which is a database for screenwriters to host their screenplays or manuscripts.

“Our goal is to become the most efficient way for writers to be discovered by the entertainment industry, and the most trusted guide for emerging writers to achieve their goals…In addition to hosting your projects for free, Coverfly uses your project’s reviews from submissions to top-tier festivals, competitions, fellowships and coverage services to provide a measure of our confidence that an Industry professional would be interested in your screenplay.”

So, it is nice to have this opportunity to have my book up on this site. πŸ™‚ My place has been earned by being the semi-finalist for the Cinematic Book Contest with Screencraft that I was informed of a few weeks ago.

Anyway, thanks for reading! If you’re curious about my book Where the Sun Rises it is available everywhere online in print and ebook. I will include an amazon link, but you can get it in print on Book Depository all around the world.

Have a great day! Kind regards, Suz

Expectant New Year! 2020

Hey guys,

It’s this time again – when we all seek to celebrate the advent of a New Year. I love this time of year and I seek to reflect on what went before this and then be expectant for the year to come. Or in the very least focused again. πŸ™‚

This year, of course had many challenges within it, but also many adventures. I am excited that my book Where the Sun Rises was launched this year, I travelled to Singapore to see my friend get married and I was part of an Indigenous program in schools which opened up new avenues to help Indigenous youth. I met amazing people this year, and there were also areas of pain as well, as in everything there is darkness and light. In life, and in any writing, life is full of difficulties but also a lot of wonder and awe, and peace.

I am looking forward with expectation for the New Year. I will be teaching part time at university again, working in the Indigenous program and I have started writing my second novel. This second novel is already a lot easier, in the sense that it is closer to my life. It is about one of my characters in my first novel. It will be set in Sydney, Syria and the Sunshine Coast, which I have never done before. It will be so interesting. πŸ™‚ I am also writing from a different point of view, to the first novel, which is still being decided at the moment. πŸ™‚

I am excited to explore this narrative about Sarah Johns, who is from my first book, Where the Sun Rises. In 2020, I am expectant that there will be many adventures, obstacles, fun, excitement, as well as joy and happiness.

For all of my friends, loved ones, family and people I know, I wish you a beautiful celebration tonight and a challenging, exciting and awe inspiring New Year. πŸ™‚ Kind regards, Suz

Courage…in 2020!

Hi guys,

Yesterday, I was reflecting on the journey of writing my novel I released in October, 2019. The central idea I had for this novel four years ago was to explore the idea of courage, and to reject the notion that it is purely a male characteristic. I have pondered this for a long time how women in my life have showed so much courage and some men have not showed the same courage. A few friends have told of stories when they faced a partner that was violent and how they were not scared at all of them.

A juvenile example of this is when I was a young kid I loved going on those little rides, like the cars in the shopping centres, but my brother only wanted to sit on them and was too scared for them to actually go. When I was a three year old, I walked off into the Australian bush to go explore and find a dam that was on our vast outback property and my brother said he couldn’t go with me. I had two dogs with me and I reached the dam and then realised I was very lost. Consequently, my family had to come and find me, miraculously they did find me and I was okay. I am not sure if this is courage or just a desire for adventure and not knowing what I was doing. (haha). But still…

Also, I have heard many stories from my friends who were fearless towards men fighting etc and stepped into situations like this. After I experienced domestic violence once, since that I have found myself in a couple of situations where I have stepped in between two men fighting or a man victimising a woman. I will always go towards helping in these situations as I remember that feeling that there was no one to help.

So, the notion of courage I always felt had been mosty unrecognised in women. However, in 2015 I became enthralled by the extreme courage shown by the Kurdish women fighting Daesh in Syria.

For more than three years, I have lived and breathed this novel and been with these women. They inspired me to walk in courage, and every time I felt afraid of something I thought of what they sacrificed and what perils they faced. Then I was able to do somethings and overcome.

These women still live with me and will always be with me. The women in my novel are based on a lot of research I conducted, but they are fictional. I created their back stories, personality and characters. These characters will always be with me throughout out my life. In Where the Sun Rises I sought to reflect the courage I saw in these phenomenal Kurdish women, but also that I see around me in my female friends and I hope to reflect myself.

I think that coming to the end of 2019, I am reflecting on the year that was, and also how thinking about these women spurred me into many things this year. I wish to continue to take this inspiration from these women – and it is for men as well, into 2020. I am so keen for a New Year, this year had many challenges, but was also glorious as well.

Let’s move in to the New Year with Courage! Bring it on! Thanks for reading! Suz πŸ™‚

Where the Sun Rises free for 2 days…

Hey guys, if you are curious about my book Where the Sun Rises and in the spirit of Christmas – I am giving it away for two days. πŸ™‚

Feel free to download it and read and review if you an on amazon. πŸ™‚

Thanks heaps for reading! It’s a joy to communicate with you all.

Suz

‘Budding Nadine Gordimer…’

A very kind review on Amazon.com for Where the Sun Rises. πŸ™‚

Espionage Lover

5.0 out of 5 stars

A Budding Nadine Gordimer

Reviewed Amazon in the United States on December 17, 2019

“”Where The Sun Rises” by Suzanne Strong confronts the soul in ways reminiscent of Nadine Gordimer’s writing. The author’s ardent prose follows an earthy drumbeat that resonates in the manner of Hemingway’s “For Whom The Bell Tolls” yet it is made all the more poignant by Strong’s empathetic touch.

The story unwinds the most recent tragedy for the Kurdish people in Syria seen through the eyes of two women friends. Daesh beheadings and atrocities perpetrated against their family members, friends and neighbors enrage Karin and Roza and provoke them to enlist in the Kurdish Women’s Brigade where they make war employing guts and daring.

Experience the ISIS siege of Kobane on the ground and feel the way a woman brings the tragedy of the war in Syria and the ongoing struggle of the Kurdish people to life.”