About Susan Sutherland

Writing a novel is a strange thing to do, for a person usually so gregarious, it is a lonely occupation. To lock yourself away in an attic office for months on end, tapping away at a keyboard, with only the radio for company. So why do I do it?
The story of Martha of Bethany is so compelling that I wanted to share it with others. Leaving Bethany is based upon the Biblical accounts, interwoven with church tradition and a good dollop of my imagination. The story of Martha started as a short story, then a novella, before finally ending up as a full-length novel.
The story of Jesus’ female disciples has for too long been given less prominence than his male ones. So, to redress this balance, I tell the story in her words. Far from the common misconception, that Jesus only had twelve male disciples, there were many women disciples who sat and learned from him alongside their male companions.
Quite suddenly a few years ago, I found myself at a break in my career as a teacher, creative therapist, and independent trainer, and the long-held love of writing resurfaced. I had written articles which appeared in various magazines before my career break, and the creative juices began to flow once more, and Martha appeared on the page for the first time.
I want to thank my family and friends who encouraged me along the way when I felt like giving up, especially my hubby, David. I could not have done it without all of you cheering me on from the sidelines. You know who you are, so thank you all.

What People Say

There are not many books that show the life of Jesus from a woman’s point of view. That itself is interesting. But Sue also shows the radical way Jesus treated woman compared to contemporary society. An emotional and enjoyable first book.

Peter, Wales

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