Susan O'Dell Underwood


Glenna Daniels faces a midlife cul-de-sac. She bears a recent miscarriage and third divorce the way her Appalachian parents taught her to cope with tragedy-in stoic secrecy. She quits her social work position in Knoxville and runs away from home at the age of thirty-six, heading west with childhood friend, Carey, a gay professor in Atlanta. During their years in school, Glenna protected him from bullies. Now Carey is her savvy guide as she tries to heal her fractured life. Through the wilds of America Glenna grapples with the past and reconciles a way back home.


Susan O'Dell Underwood grew up in Bristol, Tennessee, the daughter and granddaughter of public-school teachers who also farmed. She earned an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and holds a PhD in English from Florida State University. She directs the creative writing program at Carson-Newman University, where her husband, artist David Underwood, also teaches.