Author Luncheon with M. C. Bunn and Susan Beckham Zurenda
Page 158 Books is pleased to host a luncheon on the topic of “Secrets Among Relationships in Novels" with M. C. Bunn, author of WHERE YOUR TREASURE IS, and Susan Beckham Zurenda, author of BELLS FOR ELI. Tickets are required and food will be provided. Please note that as this is an in-person event we will follow all current Covid-guidelines.
BELLS FOR ELI is a lyrical and tender exploration of the relationship between cousins drawn together through tragedy in a love forbidden by social constraints and a family whose secrets must stay hidden. Susan Beckham Zurenda masterfully transports readers into a small Southern town where quiet, ordinary life becomes extraordinary. In this compelling coming of age story, culture, family, friends, bullies, and lovers propel two young people to unite to guard each other in a world where love, hope, and connectedness ultimately triumph.
Susan Beckham Zurenda taught English for thirty-three years and now works as a book publicist for Magic Time Literary Publicity. A recipient of several regional awards for her fiction, including The South Carolina Fiction Project, The Porter Fleming Literary Competition, and The Southern Writers Symposium, she has also published numerous stories and nonfiction pieces in literary journals. She lives in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Learn more at www.susanzurenda.com.
About WHERE YOUR TREASURE IS: Feisty, independent heiress Winifred de la Coeur has never wanted to live according to someone else’s rules—but even she didn’t plan on falling in love with a bank robber. Winifred is a wealthy, nontraditional beauty who bridles against the strict rules and conventions of Victorian London society. When she gets caught up in the chaos of a bungled bank robbery, she is thrust unwillingly into an encounter with Court Furor, a reluctant getaway driver and prizefighter. In the bitter cold of a bleak London winter, sparks fly. Winifred and Court are two misfits in their own circumscribed worlds—the fashionable beau monde with its rigorously upheld rules, and the gritty demimonde, where survival often means life-or-death choices. Despite their conflicting backgrounds, they fall desperately in love while acknowledging the impossibility of remaining together. Returning to their own worlds, they try to make peace with their lives until a moment of unrestrained honesty and defiance threatens to topple the deceptions they have carefully constructed to protect each other. A story of the overlapping entanglements of Victorian London’s social classes, the strength of family bonds and true friendship, and the power of love to heal a broken spirit.
Catherine Bunn fell in love with Victorian England and its literature before she could read, as she listened to her father and mother read aloud from the great novels at the family dinner table and as bedtime stories. Those stories ignited her imagination. “There was never a time when I wasn’t making up a story or exploring a character,” she laughs. Inheriting her father’s great passion for storytelling, by five years old Catherine was inventing her own characters; by eight she scoured libraries pouring over dusty history books for the social and cultural web that made her characters come alive. That devotion to character, research, and writing propelled Catherine to UNC-Chapel Hill and North Carolina State for degrees in English and then to the classroom to inspire other young writers like herself. Yet, for twenty years those characters haunted her dreams, crying out to be heard, to be placed on paper, and to be shared with the world. When life took a difficult turn, they came to her fully formed, tying her to her computer for three years, as scene after scene spilled out on the page. An unconventional high-born heroine and her handsome, dangerous, street-gutter paramour filled the pages with action and passion, resulting in her debut novel WHERE YOUR TREASURE IS.