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Book Clubs

Download book club guides here.

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Classroom Visits & Writing Workshops

Student comments from Susan's presentation to a
Southern Literature class at the University of Miami

I really enjoyed this story and was surprised at how much I enjoyed it.

Amazing book; beautiful and dramatic tale about life's difficulties.

So glad this

was part of

the course's


I loved this book so much and meeting the author was super cool.

Praise for presenting The Girl from the Red Rose Motel in classrooms

In The Girl from the Red Rose Motel, Susan Zurenda writes with authenticity about a high school English teacher’s life inextricably bound with her students’, their diverging experiences connected to one another through the rhythms of the school calendar and through the complex and challenging events of their lives. Readers are treated to a compelling glimpse into the life and love of a teacher, as well as the fraught world of teenagers, pushing forward toward independence and adulthood. 

Erin Hubbell

AP English teacher, Spartanburg High School, Spartanburg, SC

In The Girl from the Red Rose Motel, Susan Zurenda has penned a novel with characters who come alive on the page to captivate both adult and high school readers. Young people will especially relate to the wealthy Sterling and the vulnerable Zell and how their lives connect in unpredictable ways. Their challenges are those that teens face with everything from social status to peer pressure. In the end, it’s about belonging and being more alike than different, and we are all the better because of the connection. Zurenda’s understanding of the high school experience through her many years of teaching high school English engenders the authentic voices and circumstances in this compelling story. I see this novel becoming a must read for many high school students as well as adult readers.

Dr. Terry O. Pruitt

Chief Academic Officer, Spartanburg School District 7

Simultaneously sensitive and provocative, The Girl from the Red Rose Motel explores issues in society, families, and education that are all too relevant in the here and now. Readers will fall in love with the spirited young heroine and the unlikely friendships she forges. While this novel resonates with any age, the fast pace, nuanced characters, and engrossing conflicts are especially well suited for a discussion-based high school classroom. I look forward to using it with my seniors in the approaching years!

Marion Nelson

Upper School English Teacher, Christ Church Episcopal School, Greenville, SC

Susan enjoys visiting high school and college classrooms, as well as presenting
writing workshops to groups at libraries, literary festivals, and related venues.

If you're interested in a writing workshop or class presentation,
please contact below.

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