Thrilled to welcome back Suanne Schafer to the blog today. She’s here to discuss her second novel, Hunting the Devil, which is out now.
Author Name: Suanne Schafer
Book Title: Hunting the Devil
Book Genre: Women’s Fiction/Suspense
Release Date: September 15, 2019
Publisher: Waldorf Publishing
Welcome back, Suanne! Please tell us about your latest release.
Part medical procedural, part global political thriller, part justice / revenge-seeking novel, and part fractured romance, Hunting the Devil is a gut-wrenching novel of a doctor pushed to her limits during one of the most grotesque moments in modern world history, the Rwandan genocide in 1994.
What inspired the idea for Hunting the Devil?
One of my bucket list of things to do included an African safari. I took my adopted biracial son on a three-week private safari. He freely admits to being an Oreo, black on the outside, white in the middle. He had with some vague, Alex-Haley idea of connecting with his black roots. While considered black here, he was a mzungu (a white person) in Tanzania. He was quite uncomfortable during our entire time there. This book arose from witnessing his efforts at reconciling these different visions of himself. And, of course, an author’s job is to toss their protagonist into the hottest possible pot of water. And where might that person be most uncomfortable? Questioning their racial identity during a genocide.
How close is the end product to that seed of an idea?
I think it’s pretty close. I wanted an edgy heroine who doesn’t rely on the assistance of men to complete the job she’s undertaken, despite the despair her search drives her toward. I also like writing books that showcase my world travels, and Hunting the Devil with its three continents (Europe, Africa, and North America), five countries (the United States, France, Belgium, Rwanda, and Tanzania), eleven locales (Philadelphia, Paris, Brussels, Den Hague, Kigali, Kirihe, Rusumo, Benaco Refugee Camp, Ngara, Dar Es Salaam, and Arusha) and five languages (English, French, Dutch, Kinyarwanda, and Swahili) does that.
In what ways do you think you’ve evolved as an author since your first book came out?
I’d originally planned to write romances because they sell, but that, either due to a series of failed relationships or a genetic distrust of happily-ever-after, I couldn’t for the life of me write a traditional romance. As I’ve finished my third book, I find that writing isn’t easier so much as I am more open to exploring that which my muse pushes me toward. I no longer say I write “for fun”, though that certainly is a great part of why I write. As a result of the slow but steady expansion of my bibliography on my Amazon author page, I’ve begun to feel like a “real” writer and my “imposter syndrome” is no longer a terminal case.
What’s your favorite part about writing/being an author? What do you find challenging?
The most challenging? The first sentence/paragraph/page that will drag readers into my story. My favorite part about writing? Going to work in my jammies and getting to visit worlds of my own creation.
What are your interests outside of writing and reading?
I knit (my excuse for watching TV—so that I don’t completely waste my time) and quilt. I also really mentoring other writers and editing their works.
What are you working on now?
My third book went to the editors on August 3rd. Now, I’m struggling with the opening of my fourth book and doing the research behind it. Like my others, it’s not an easy book to write or research. Hunting the Devil involved a genocide; book #4 takes place within an insane asylum in the 1890s.
Where can readers find you (website, blog, social media, etc.)?
Thank you, Suanne! Hunting the Devil is available now.
HUNTING THE DEVIL
When Dr. Jessica Hemings volunteers for a medical mission in Rwanda, she becomes entrapped in the maelstrom of Rwandan politics and the enmity between Hutus and Tutsis. Her Tutsi features plunge her into the Rwandan Genocide. Dr. Cyprien Gatera, Jess’s superior and a Hutu radical, commandeers her clinic, slaughters her patients and her adopted sons, then forces her to treat his wounded. She escapes and survives three weeks in hiding before finding refuge at Benaco refugee camp in Tanzania.
There, Jess vows revenge. She searches for Gatera with the help of Michel Fournier, a French lawyer-turned-war-correspondent, and Dr. Tom Powell, her long-time lover. When an unknown informant passes information to Jess about her nemesis, she returns to Rwanda, despite warnings from the Belgian Secret Service that Gatera plans to assassinate her. In their final showdown, Jess must decide if revenge is best served cold or not at all.