Author, Therapist, Mediator
Susan Kraus has been a therapist for over three decades, a mediator for two, and a writer since she held a pencil.
In addition to a well-respected private therapy practice, Susan Kraus has been a successful travel writer, enticing readers with adventures around the globe. By 2014, she had completed her first two novels in the Grace McDonald Series. Flint Hills Publishing is honored to have re-released the first two books in this series and to release the third, Insufficient Evidence.
The Grace McDonald Series
Grace McDonald feels blessed: she has a strong marriage, healthy kids, and satisfying work as a therapist. And she has no idea how easily it can all be lost.
For Mandy, marrying a hunk like Danny Rivers is a dream come true. So, when Danny treats her badly, she does what millions of women do to keep their families intact - she makes excuses and puts up with it. Until, one day, she reaches out for help.
Fall From Grace crosses genres. It is a psychological thriller, but where characters trump action. At the core is a murder, but more compelling is what happens to an array of relationships - friendships, families, therapist/client - in the aftermath. Pitting integrity against DNA and intuition against evidence, Fall From Grace challenges our middle-class illusions of control and assumptions about who will stand by us when we're faced with the unthinkable.
When therapist and mediator Grace McDonald returns to Kansas after a ten-year hiatus in Alaska to be with her daughter and autistic grandson, she expects a tough adjustment. But what Grace cannot anticipate is being assigned the mediation case from hell.
Not just about parental rights and custody, the case becomes a battle for the heart and soul of a child. Mike is a combat vet who was never told he had a son. Becca is a member of the gay-bashing, funeral-picketing Westboro Baptist Church and what is often labeled the “most hated family in America.”
David, eleven years old, is their son.
Meticulously researched, All God’s Children moves fluidly between verifiable facts and the what if of fiction. Kraus takes readers behind the closed doors of mediation and locked gates of the Westboro Baptist Church compound. When a brutal assault leaves the community reeling, Grace is pushed to uncover the truth.
At her very first fraternity party, college freshman Hannah is thrilled with the attentions of Logan, a good-looking senior. They talk and flirt.
And then it all goes very wrong.
Across town, Shelby, a junior, wakes up naked after a date, with no memory of what happened. Therapist Grace McDonald works with both Hannah and Shelby as they try to process their experiences and seek justice. Grace struggles to fully understand college hookup culture and its impact on personal accountability and the legal system. When her drive for truth collides with professional ethics, she goes just a little bit rogue. Insufficient Evidence draws readers into a reality where one word -consensual -or the disclaimer - "It was just a hookup”—undermine all traditional forms of evidence. It’s a page-turning psychological thriller, but even more compelling are the relationships that test the limits of friendship, family, loyalty, and revenge.
Grace returns from a cruise to find that life has been upended by the COVID-19 pandemic. Her daughter's graduate program goes virtual, and her grandson on the spectrum is home 24/7 with school by Zoom. Her best friend, Katrina, contracts the virus early on but isn't recovering. On top of that, Grace is called to facilitate a COVID grief group, whose members express rage and sadness at the senseless deaths of people they love.
Meanwhile, Molly and Mike forge a long-distance friendship over Zoom. A young couple, Zed and Cherry, finds validation and connection in QAnon. And on another front, Theo, a respiratory therapist, questions the ethics of keeping oxygen-starved patients alive.
When We Lost Touch is a contemporary historical fiction set during the first 18 months of a deadly pandemic. Ordinary people lose touch with friends, family, reality, and truth as they're caught in a war zone where most of the casualties are taken down by friendly fire. Kraus expertly weaves stories that portray life during a pandemic, providing a gripping, nuanced look at political, social, and medical challenges.