Mad Mischief: A Novel

October 8, 2018

What happens when an elite African safari is transformed into a psychotic journey of survival for a society wife traveling with her narcissistic husband? In Mad Mischief, the shimmering beauty and primal power of Sub-Saharan Africa is the setting for this story of love, deceit, obsession and ultimately, escape and redemption.

Inspired by true events, Mad Mischief is the haunting tale of Sarah – a woman struggling with the unforgiving callousness of her selfish husband, the sadistic machinations of their safari guide, the unscrupulous actions of a Nairobi shopkeeper, and the enigmatic behavior of a world-renowned photographer who inexplicably appears whenever she is in desperate need of a guardian angel. Her very consciousness altered by an adverse reaction to anti-malarial medication, Sarah barely maintains a vestige of her sanity and personal fortune as she travels through the game parks of Kenya and Tanzania, finally winding up in the city of Nairobi, where she confronts roguish men aiming to take advantage of her drug-induced state of mind.

The word safari means ‘long journey.’ The events of Sarah’s safari take her on a life-altering rite of passage that begins with an epiphany as she glimpses a matriarchal herd of elephants on her first day in the wild. From that moment on, her life and sanity slip away until she is rescued, and ultimately emerges with a transformed state of mind and a once unimaginable core of strength.

Susan spent nearly 20 years as Vice President of Sales for a major division of MCA/ Universal Studios, implementing sales programs to increase the attendance for The Universal Studios Tour, The Amphitheatre, the Tourmobile in Washington, D.C., and the hotel concessions at Yosemite National Park. She then went on to create two very successful entrepreneurial ventures, one delivering unique financial services to high-level executives, and the other providing innovative networking and marketing opportunities for a broad cross-section of businesses. She now resides in Montecito, California amidst an eclectic art collection gathered from her travels around the world, with a kitchen full of pots and pans for cooking gourmet dishes. Her passion for culinary masterpieces and wondrous art are very much a reflection of what she has poured into this work of fiction.



Susan St. John beautifully captures the magic of Africa.

By Piaras on October 8, 2018 (Emerald Book Reviews)

Author Susan St. John weaves a compelling and haunting saga, with intriguing twists and turns that will easily captivate the reader’s attention from the beginning. The author paints a gripping and mesmerizing story of love, power, obsession and redemption in a very vivid and convincing way. In addition, the characters are drawn with great credibility and conviction. It’s a unique and very interesting novel that will keep you engaged from the first page to the last.

The book description gives a sneak preview: ‘Mad Mischief is the haunting tale of one woman’s adventure to the edge of her own sanity and an unforgettable testament of her indomitable spirit to survive.

Featuring the shimmering beauty and primal power of sub- Saharan Africa, Sarah embarks on an elite safari with her cantankerous husband, setting the stage for a story of love, deceit, power, obsession and ultimately, escape and redemption.

The word safari means ”long journey,” and the story of Mad Mischief tells of one unlike any other–a journey of the heart, mind and spirit. Sarah’s plans to save her marriage with this journey are shattered when, thrown off balance by a dangerous combination of prescription drugs, she struggles to maintain her equilibrium in the face of the callousness of her husband, the sadistic machinations of their safari guide, the unscrupulous actions of a Nairobi shopkeeper, and the enigmatic behavior of a world-renowned photographer who appears almost magically whenever she is in need of a guardian angel.’

Now, if that’s not enough to get your curiosity juices flowing, I don’t know what will. But if you want to find out what happens, you’ll just have to turn the pages for yourself! However, I will say it was well worth the read. It’s an impressive debut novel by St. John, so it will be interesting to see what comes next.

Mad Mischief had every element a good story should have. An intriguing plot, attention to detail, but best of all fleshed out, well-written and well-rounded character development. There’s an abundance of well-illustrated scenes that make you feel like you are right there in the story, and that’s something I really look for in a good book.

Very appealing and alluring, this work had me immersed from the beginning. The story flowed from scene to scene with ease, and the author shows exceptional ability when it comes to storytelling. There is plenty of drama in this page turner that will take the reader on a truly gripping and intriguing journey.

It’s one of those books that come along occasionally that makes you want to read it non-stop until you get to the end. I’m giving nothing further away here. And this, I hope, will only add to the mystery and enjoyment for the reader.

If this book is anything to go by, I’ll certainly be looking forward to reading more from this author in the future. It also has a distinctly cinematic feel to it and I could easily see it being adapted for a made-for-TV movie or the Silver Screen. A well-deserved five stars from me.



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