ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
From Susan: I've always loved reading, history, and horses. These things come together in several of my historical books. My young adult novel, Sarah's Long Ride, also spotlights horses and the rugged sport of endurance riding, as does the contemporary romance Trail to Justice. I took a vocational course in horseshoeing after earning a bachelor's degree in history. I don't shoe horses anymore, but the experience has come in handy in writing my books.
Another longtime hobby of mine is genealogy, which has led me down many fascinating paths. I'm proud to be a DAR member! Some of Jim's and my quirkier ancestors have inspired fictional characters.
For many years I worked for the Central Maine Morning Sentinel as a freelancer, covering local government, school board meetings, business news, fires, auto accidents, and other local events, including a murder trial. I've also written many profiles and features for the newspaper and its special sections. This experience was a great help in developing fictional characters and writing realistic scenes. I also published nonfiction articles in several magazines and had several short stories appear in Woman's World, Grit, and Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine.
My husband, Jim, and I moved to his birth state, Oregon, for a while after we were married, but decided to move back to Maine and be near my family. We're so glad we did. It allowed our six children to grow up feeling close to their cousins and grandparents, and some of Jim's family have even moved to Maine!
Our children are all home-schooled. The two youngest are still learning at home. Jim recently retired from his vocation as an editor at a daily newspaper, and we’ve moved from Maine to Kentucky.
ABOUT THE BOOK
IT'S 1915, AND EMMA SHUSTER HAS FAR TOO MUCH ON HER MIND TO ENTERTAIN NOTIONS OF ROMANCE...
A female Navy cryptographer seeks to save lives...and uncover her father’s killers.
In 1915, German sympathizers escalated acts of sabotage in the United States to keep the nation from joining in the war. With enemies lurking at every turn, whom can Emma trust? Is romance the true motive behind her tow suitors advances? Or could one-or both of them-have traitorous intentions in mind?
Following the mysterious murder of Emma Shuster’s father, Lt. John Patterson invites Emma to become a Navy cryptographer because of the expertise she gained in helping her father develop a cipher system.
Emma races to discover the nefarious plans of her country's foes and unmask their leader before others are killed. She finds new strength in her faith as she strives to outwit her adversary, known only as Kobold - German for goblin.
And yet, her greatest challenge may be deciphering the cryptic messages her heart sends whenever she encounters a certain navy lieutenant... Can Emma and John find love in the midst of turmoil as America plunges toward war?
If you would like to read the first chapter of The Crimson Cipher, go HERE.
The Crimson Cipher by Susan Page Davis is a fast-paced and intriguing look at the world of code-breaking in the days leading up to WWI. When Emma Shuster's father is found shot dead in his office, she assumes that he was murdered for information about the new ciphering machine he was creating for a bank. Navy lieutenant John Patterson arrived to talk to Professor Shuster but ends up helping Emma deal with funeral preparations and plans for the future in the wake of her father's death. The couple feels drawn together by the tragedy, and he helps her find a job with the military as a code-breaker. But suspicious activities by Emma's aunt, uncle, and cousin, and a suitor put in her life in danger, as does the man who will stop at nothing to find that machine. Davis truly brings to life the tense days when Europe is at war and the US tries to remain neutral, even when its ships are being attacked and sabotage is happening all over the country. Her portrayal of the fascinating role code-breakers played in that time makes the story compelling and enjoyable. I hope that she isn't done writing about this era, Doris and the other women rooming at Mrs. Draper's boarding house could each support their own book!